Written and directed by Ari Aster in his directorial debut, Hereditary is a 2018 supernatural horror film. Starring Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne, Milly Shapiro, and Alex Wolff, this chilling movie follows a grieving family that begins to unravel as sinister secrets come to light.
With stellar performances and shocking twists, Hereditary is one of the most well-received modern horror films. This bone-chilling and subversive movie explores themes of loss, grief, and depression as a family is pushed to their breaking point.
Hereditary was both a critical and commercial success. The film was made on a budget of $10 million and grossing more than $80 million, with rave reviews from critics and viewers alike. It’s understandable why you’re looking for similar films. Keep reading as we list 25 films to watch if you loved Hereditary.
1. A Quiet Place
A Quiet Place is a 2018 horror film directed by John Krasinski. The film follows a couple – played by Krasinski and his real-life wife, Emily Blunt – who must try to raise their children in a post-apocalyptic world that has been ravaged by blind creatures who listen for their prey.
Made on a budget of $22 million, the film grossed more than $350 million dollars at the box office. The film was nominated for numerous awards, including Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations for the film’s sound editing and score, respectively.
If you enjoyed the familial element at the heart of Hereditary, then you’re sure to love A Quiet Place. You’ll also be delighted to hear that there’s a critically acclaimed sequel, too, for double the terror.
2. The Babadook
The Babadook is the 2014 psychological horror film debut of Australian director Jennifer Kent. Kent’s debut is based on her own 2005 short film, Monster. The film follows a mother (played by Essie Davis) who is grieving the loss of her husband as she tries to raise her young son, who claims to have seen monsters lurking in their home.
Made on a tight budget of $2 million, this indie horror gem grossed more than $10 million at the box office. The film received much critical acclaim for the acting and how the film explores themes such as grief, trauma, and depression.
For those already familiar with Hereditary, they’ll definitely notice an overlap in themes between these two films. If you’re a fan of the realistic exploration of themes surrounding loss and grief in Hereditary, and the stellar acting, then you need to watch The Babadook immediately.
3. The Blackcoat’s Daughter
The Blackcoat’s Daughter is a 2015 psychological and supernatural horror movie that was written and directed by Osgood Perkins. The film follows Joan (Emma Roberts), a troubled woman who is drawn to a school where two students, Kat (Kiernan Shipka) and Rose (Lucy Boynton), face a malicious presence.
The film has been listed in numerous lists of the scariest modern movies to watch. After its release, the film garnered significant acclaim, especially for writer/director Osgood Perkins, who was praised for his fresh approach to the supernatural thriller.
Like Hereditary, The Blackcoat’s Daughter is filled with clues that viewers may not pick up on during their first watch. If you’re looking for a fantastic horror film that you can re-watch a few times, this film should be on your list!
4. The Blair Witch Project
The Blair Witch Project, released in 1999, is a supernatural found-footage horror movie that was directed, written, and edited by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez. The movie, which is presented as footage that has been found after the fact, follows three student filmmakers who hike into a nearby forest to report on a local legend.
This film is considered one of the most commercially successful independent films of all time, grossing more than $240 million on a budget of less than half a million dollars. In the years since its release, this film has solidified its place in pop culture and horror
Like Hereditary, the sinister occult themes take a while to reveal themselves in The Blair Witch Project. If you loved Hereditary for the occult themes therein, you’d love to see them explored from a found footage point of view!
5. The Conjuring
The Conjuring is a 2013 supernatural horror film directed by James Wan. The film, which spawned a horror franchise, follows fictionalized versions of paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, as they investigate a haunting in Rhode Island.
The film was an instant success, grossing more than $300 million at the box office on a budget of only $20 million. The film was praised for its sympathetic performances from its leads and their minimal use of tired horror tropes and digital effects.
Like Hereditary, James Wan’s masterful The Conjuring will terrify you, staying with you long after the movie has ended. Luckily, the film spawned a wildly successful horror franchise, so you’ll have no shortage of entertainment!
6. The Exorcist
The Exorcist is a supernatural horror film directed by William Friedkin. Released in 1973, the film is based on the novel by William Peter Blatty, who also adapted the screenplay. The film follows a twelve-year-old girl, Regan (Linda Blair), whose mother seeks out two priests to save her daughter from an evil entity.
Considered by many to be one of the (if not the)scariest movies of all time, The Exorcist has remained an acclaimed cult classic over the years. Made on a budget of $12 million, the movie grossed more than $440 million at the box office. The film received a whopping ten academy award nominations, winning two, and seven golden globe nominations, winning four.
When you finished watching Hereditary – heck, probably while you were still watching it – you knew what terror felt like. That’s how audiences felt watching The Exorcist back in the 70s. The film has stood the test of time and is a must-watch for any horror fan.
7. False Positive
False Positive is a 2021 horror film that was directed by John Lee. The film follows a couple (played by Ilana Glazer and Justin Theroux) who seek out the help of a brilliant fertility specialist (played by Pierce Brosnan). However, the couple will soon uncover the disturbing truth about their doctor.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, False Positive was released through streaming service Hulu. The film has been praised for its ability to get under your skin as you slowly uncover the shocking truth about what’s really going on in this movie.
False Positive, which has been described as a modern adaptation of Rosemary’s Baby, explores many complex themes through the horror genre. If you enjoyed the way Hereditary explored a mother’s grief admin increasingly sinister occurrences, then you’ll love this movie!
8. Goodnight Mommy
Written and directed by both Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala, Goodnight Mommy is a 2014 Austrian film. Described as psychological horror, the movie has received universal praise from audiences.
The movie follows two twin boys (played by Elias and Lukas Schwarz) who move into a new house with their mother (Susanne Wuest), who recently had cosmetic surgery that altered the appearance of her face. Under the bandages, however, is someone the twins don’t recognize.
Throughout Hereditary, Toni Collette’s Annie is forced to grapple with notions of identity, as a daughter, as a mother, as a wife, and as an artist. If you enjoyed the film’s exploration of those themes, you’re sure to enjoy Goodnight Mommy.
9. The Hole in the Ground
Co-written and directed by Lee Cronin, The Hole in the Ground is a 2019 supernatural horror film. The director’s debut follows a single mother (played by Seána Kerslake), who begins to think that her son’s increasingly erratic and disturbing behavior is somehow linked to a sinister sinkhole.
The Hole in the Ground premiered at Sundance Film Festival in 2019 and has received widespread acclaim. The movie is especially praised for its portrayal of parental fears throughout this unique horror narrative. If you enjoyed Hereditary’s exploration of motherhood, you’d love this!
10. Hour of the Wolf
Hour of the Wolf is a Swedish psychological horror film that was written and directed by Ingmar Bergman. Originally released in 1968, the film follows the disappearance of Johan Bord (played by Max von Sydow), a painter who starts having increasingly nightmarish visions.
Hour of the Wolf is commonly cited on lists of the best horror films of all time. In a 2012 poll that was carried out by the British Film Institute, Bergman’s film was classified as one of the top fifty films of all time, horror or otherwise.
If you’re looking for another movie, like Hereditary, that’s full of symbolism, then you’ll love Bergman’s Hour of the Wolf. This is definitely a film you’ll also want to watch a few times!
11. The House of the Devil
Written and directed by Ti West, The House of the Devil is a 2009 horror movie. Set in the 1980s, the film blends elements of both the slasher genre and the haunted house genre. The film follows a struggling college student (played by Jocelin Donahue) who has a babysitting gig on the night of a full lunar eclipse. She soon suspects her life may be in danger…
While the film only received a limited theatrical release, it was soon released through Video on Demand (VOD). The film received positive reviews, with many praising the slow-burn approach to the film. In fact, famed film critic Roger Ebert praised the film’s ability to build suspense in a Hitchcockian manner.
If you enjoyed the way small, seemingly insignificant events slowly escalated into pure horror, then you’ll thoroughly enjoy The House of the Devil.
12. The Killing of a Sacred Deer
The Killing of a Sacred Deer is a 2017 psychological horror film directed by Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos. The film follows a surgeon, Steven (Colin Farrel), who must make an unimaginable sacrifice to protect his family. The film is based on Euripedes’ Greek tragedy Iphigenia at Aulis, written between 408 and 406BC.
The film received much acclaim and grossed $7 million at the box office. The film is widely considered one of the best recent horror films, with many praising the acting and the uncliched approach to the horror genre. If you enjoyed the sheer originality of Hereditary, you’re sure to love this film.
13. The Lodge
Written and directed by both Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala, The Lodge is a 2019 psychological horror movie. The film follows a woman (Riley Keough) who goes to a remote lodge with her fiancé and his two children. However, when they are snowed in, increasingly bizarre and terrifying events begin happening.
Grossing $3 million at the international box office, the film is an underrated horror gem. The film was praised by critics, who applauded the film’s ability to affect the viewer on a subconscious level the way many horror films simply couldn’t.
The Lodge, and the occult themes that are present within it, has drawn comparisons to other films on this list. These include The Witch, Goodnight Mommy, and – of course – Hereditary. Now that sounds like a great movie night to us!
Midsommar, of course, is the second film written and directed by Ari Aster, the acclaimed director of Hereditary. This 2019 horror film follows a couple (played by Florence Pugh and Jack Reynor) who travel to Scandinavia for a mid-summer festival. However, their idyllic getaway soon turns nightmarish.
Midsommar grossed just under $50 million at the box office against a budget of $9 million. Critics praised Aster’s meticulous eye for detail, as well as the acting. Many critics especially praised the performance given by Pugh as Dani Ardor.
It is a known fact that Midsommar was written before Hereditary, although the latter film would be produced first. In many ways, Hereditary is the yin to Midsommar’s yang. In fact, you’ll even find this reflected in the contrasting color pallets of the two films. This is required watching for any Hereditary fan.
Mother! is a 2017 psychological horror film written and directed by Darren Aronofsky. The film explored the relationship of a couple – played by Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem – as their relationship is put to the test with the arrival of unwanted guests at their house.
Aronofsky’s film grossed $44 million at the box office, having been made on a budget of $3 million. Critic reactions to the film were polarizing, however, this was largely due to the polarizing nature of the film. Lawrence’s performance was widely praised by critics and audiences.
If you enjoyed the unpredictability of Hereditary that was backed by stellar performances from the cast, we’re sure you’ll enjoy Mother!
16. The Omen
The Omen is a supernatural horror film that was directed by Richard Donner and released in 1976. In this harrowing movie, a web of mysterious deaths surrounding an American ambassador is unraveled. At the center of it all? Their seemingly innocent son, Damien, who they come to suspect is the prophesied Antichrist.
The Omen spawned three sequels and a reboot. The film was a commercial success upon its release, grossing more than $60 million at the box office against a budget of $2.8 million. Furthermore, the movie won the Academy Award for Best Original Score.
If you loved Hereditary’s utilization of themes like loss and grief and how it intertwined these with bone-chilling horror, then you need to watch this seminal horror movie as soon as possible.
Directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, Orphan is a 2009 psychological horror film. The film follows a couple, played by Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard, who adopt an orphaned girl named Esther after losing their baby. However, as the movie’s tagline states, there’s something wrong with Esther.
Orphan was a commercial success, grossing more than $70 million at the global box office against a budget of $20 million. Furthermore, while the film received mixed reviews from critics, many praised the performance of Isabelle Fuhrman, who portrays Esther.
If you enjoyed the dread evoked by Hereditary as innocent children are placed in increasingly terrifying situations, then you’ll love Orphan. The climactic ending is sure to leave you reeling!
18. The Others
The Others is an English-language supernatural psychological horror movie that was written and directed by Spanish director Alejandro Amenába. Released in 2001, the film stars Nicole Kidman as Grace Stewart, a mother who lives in a remote country house with her two children, who are convinced their home is haunted.
The film was a huge success, grossing more than $200 million on a budget of $17 million. Many critics praised Nicole Kidman’s acting, praising her ability to play a ‘regular person that finds themselves in an increasingly disturbing situation.
If one of the (many) reasons you loved Hereditary was Toni Collette’s grounded performance as the family’s matriarch, you’d love The Others – from Nicole Kidman’s legendary performance right down to the shocking twists.
19. The Ritual
The Ritual is a Netflix Original horror film that was directed by David Bruckner. Released in 2017, the film follows a group of college friends who go on a journey through a forest in Northern Europe. However, when a malicious entity begins stalking them, things take a turn for the worse.
This premise of this movie is reminiscent of another film discussed on this list: The Blair Witch Project. If you’re interested in seeing occult themes explored in new and chilling ways, this is the perfect movie for you!
20. The Shining
The Shining is Stanley Kubrick’s infamous 1980 adaption of Steven King’s seminal horror novel of the same name. The film follows a family who heads to a remote hotel after the patriarch, Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), gets a job as the winter caretaker. Snowed in, a sinister presence takes hold of Jack as he descends into violence.
Made with a budget of $19 million, the film grossed more than $47 million upon its initial release. While the film initially received mixed reviews – especially from King, the author of the source material – the film has become a cult classic and is considered one of the best horror films of all time.
If you loved the climactic final act of Hereditary, which predominantly took place within the confined space of the family’s home, then you’re sure to love watching the Torrance’s harrowing ordeal at the snowed-in Overlook Hotel in The Shining.
Stoker, released in 2013, is the first English-language film of South Korean director Park Chan-Wook. This Hitchcockian thriller examines the relationship between India (Mia Wasikowska) and her mother (Nicole Kidman) after the death of India’s father. When her Uncle Charlie (Matthew Goode) arrives unexpectedly, their lives take a sinister turn.
The familial themes in Hereditary were complex. After all, it’s alluded to in the movie’s title. If you’re looking for a brilliantly acted thriller that explores complex family dynamics, then Stoker should be on your list of movies to watch.
Suspiria is an Italian horror film that was co-written and directed by Dario Argento. Released in 1977, the film follows an American student (played by Jessica Harper) as she arrives at a German ballet school. However, a string of gruesome murders reveals there is something sinister happening at the school.
Argento’s film was well received and has become a cult classic over time. A remake of Suspiria – directed by Luca Guadagnino and starring Dakota Johnson as the American student – was released in 2018.
Regardless of which version of Suspiria you watch – we’d suggest both – you’re in for a great slow-burn horror. If you enjoyed the way events in Hereditary slowly devolved into chaos, then you’ll love Suspiria.
23. The Uninvited
The Uninvited is a 2009 psychological horror film directed by The Guard Brothers and is a remake of the Korean movie A Tale of Two Sisters (2003). The film follows Anna (played by Emily Browning) as she returns home from a brief stay at a psychiatric facility after the death of her mother. Upon her return home, however, she finds that her mother’s nurse has moved in…
This remake grossed more than $40 million at the box office. Film critic Roger Ebert praised Browning’s performance, stating that she makes for the perfect horror movie heroine. Overall, The Uninvited is a stylish movie that is elevated by both the performances and a plot twist that will leave viewers reeling.
If you enjoyed the stellar acting in Hereditary and the mind-blowing twists throughout the movie, then The Uninvited will be the perfect horror movie for a night in. It’s also one you’ll want to re-watch to spot the clues you missed the first time round!
Written and directed by Jordan Peele, Us is a 2019 horror movie. The film, which is led by Lupita Nyong’o, follows a family as they go on vacation together. However, their beach getaway takes a terrifying turn when the family’s doppelgangers – their doubles – start terrorizing them.
Us is a certified critical and commercial success. The film, made on a budget of $20 million, grossed more than $250 million at the international box office. The film was critically lauded, being nominated for a whopping 69 awards, winning 43.
One of the highly praised elements of Hereditary is its ability to deliver commentary on issues like grief and depression. If you’re looking for a chilling horror movie that’s able to deliver both scares and social commentary, Us is the movie for you.
25. The Witch: A New England Folktale
The Witch: A New England Folktale was written and directed by Robert Eggers in his directorial debut. Released in 2015, the film is a supernatural horror film set in the 1630s. The film, which stars Anya Taylor-Joy in her first feature film, follows a family whose lives are thrown into chaos by witchcraft and black magic.
Made on a budget of only $4 million, the film grossed upwards of $40 million at the box office, certifying it as a commercial success. Furthermore, the film was critically praised, with particular praise for the acting, the film’s handling of its subject matter, and Egger’s directing.
The Witch is a slow burn, with the suspense growing as you get closer to the movie’s shocking final act. Despite being a period film, a family is at the roof of this psychological horror film. Fans of the familial themes in Hereditary – and that shocking ending – are sure to love this!