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10 Netflix horror movies you can watch while you wait for Martin Freeman's 'Cargo'

Ten horror movies on Netflix that you can watch while you wait in eager anticipation of Martin Freeman's 'Cargo.'
UPDATED JAN 15, 2020
 Martin Freeman (Source: Getty Images)
Martin Freeman (Source: Getty Images)

'Cargo' is set to release on May 18 and will become the first ever Australian Netflix Original movie. Directed by Yolanda Ramke and Ben Howling, the film has been five years in the making and has been dubbed as a 'zombie tearjerker.'

Starring Martin Freeman as the lead, the film follows his struggles as he tries to find his daughter a safe haven in a post-apocalyptic Australia ravaged by a virus which turns the infected into mindless, lethargic zombies.  While the concept is one that has been done-to-death over the years, 'Cargo' provides a refreshing twist and avoids the pitfalls that make most movies in the genre a trope-fest. 

Netflix has shown in the past that it has a good eye when it comes to producing and portraying a unique brand of horror but what are some other films on the streaming platform that can help you get in the mood for its latest venture?

#10 Teeth

'Teeth' follows the life of teenager Dawn O' Keefe, who is a spokesperson for a Christian abstinence group called 'The Promise.' Despite wanting to stay true to her Christian faith, Dawn feels attracted to Tobey when she is introduced to him and when Tobey tries to rape her in the isolation of a local swimming hole, he finds to his terror that there's something different about Dawn's vagina: it bites. Dawn is terrified at the development but later realizes that whatever it is, is only out to protect her. It does not engage when the sexual contact is consensual.

As far as horror movies go, 'Teeth' is as unique as it gets. It provides a fresh feminist spin on classic horror movie tropes and gives the audience some sadistic laughs along the way. While not very commercially successful - it barely made back its budget - it's worth a watch for the way it portrays such an out-of-the-box concept.

#9 Train to Busan

'Train to Busan' is a South Korean zombie apocalypse action thriller film which follows the lives of the passengers on a train to Busan as a pandemic breaks out in the country and traps the passengers within the confines of its bogeys. When an infected person gets on to the train, the virus spreads and chaos breaks out within the passengers as they desperately try to shield themselves from the deadly plague. Stops along the way offer little relief as the epidemic quickly takes hold of the country. Who will survive and who will die? 

The film boasts of a unique cast of characters from all walks of life; Seok-woo, a divorced fund manager who is an absentee father to his young daughter because of his workaholic tendencies; there's working-class husband Sang-Hwa and his pregnant wife Seong-kyeong; a baseball team; rich-yet-egotistical COO Yon-suk; elderly sisters In-Gil and Jon-Gil, and a homeless man who is experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder. In doing so, the movie incorporates the subtle undertone of class warfare and depicts how these fundamentally different people put aside petty squabbles in a bid to survive.

#8 The Babysitter

'The Babysitter' is equal parts horror and comedy. It chronicles the adventures of 12-year-old Cole Johnson, who is relentlessly bullied by one of his neighbors but is saved by his babysitter, Bee. Initially ecstatic at her intervention, Cole soon finds that Bee has a dark secret and she's not what she's made herself out to be. Can Cole escape the clutches of Bee and her friends?

If you're a horror fanatic, 'The Babysitter' may not be your cup of tea. Many parts of the movie make you laugh out loud and the sheer absurdity unfolding before your eyes, and you hardly feel any sense of empathy or attachment with any of the characters. But watch in a mindset of having a bit of fun, you're in for a good time.

#7 Hellraiser (1987)

Frank Cotton is sold a fascinating puzzle box with the promise that it would open a new realm of carnal pleasures. But when he solves the puzzle, he instead opens the portal to an alternate dimension and is greeted by creatures called 'Cenobites,' which subject him to the extremes of sadomasochism. Frank dies but a chance event leads to his resurrection and to survive, he needs blood. Lots of it. 

'Hellraiser' was directed by Clive Barker and was based on Barker's novella, 'The Hellbound Heart.' While the film initially scored mixed reviews, it is now considered to be one of the greatest British horror movies of all time and has spawned nine further sequels.

#6 The Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence 

'The Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence' takes place after the events of the first movie and stars Laurence R. Harvey as Martin Lomax, the overweight, asthmatic, mentally impaired mama's boy who watches the first film and is inspired to make his own 'centipede.' Lomax's traumatic past is the trigger that begins the killing spree and begins the chain of events that made critics describe the movie as 'repulsive and shocking.'

The nature of the movie's content - the mind-numbing gore, violence, sexual obscenity, and graphic and disturbing imagery - meant that countries such as the UK, Australia, and New Zealand refused to even classify it, meaning it could not be legally supplied in any format. Those familiar with the first installment will know that the movie is Tom Six's (director) way of showing a giant finger to critics and will thoroughly enjoy the plethora of meta references. 

#5 Stephen King's Children of the Corn

'Children of the Corn' is set in Gatlin, Nebraska, a fictional town consisting of a primarily agrarian community. When the crops fail one year, 12-year-old Isaac indoctrinates all the children of the town with the practices of a religious cult that worships a bloodthirsty deity and leads to the massacre of all the adults of the town. When Vicky and her boyfriend pass the town and its overwhelming sense of foreboding three years later, they are faced with a desperate fight for their lives.

Based on Stephen King's short story of the same name, the screenplay was initially conceptualized by the author himself but later abandoned in favor of George Goldsmith's version. If you're a fan of King and his brand of horror, 'Children of the Corn' is a must watch. 

#4 The Conjuring 2

'Conjuring 2' yet again follows legendary paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren as they look into the haunting at the Enfield council house in what came to be known as the Enfield Poltergeist. The Hodgson Family experiences the full demonic force of the being that has grabbed onto their daughter, Janet, and turn to the Warrens for relief. Initially hesitant to take the case because of Lorraine's premonition, the pair eventually decide to intervene against their better judgment to try and save the desperate family. 

The haunting grabbed newspaper headlines when the case became public in the late 70s and is widely considered to be a hoax constructed from the overactive imaginations of the teenage girls who play the protagonists in the movie. After the masterpiece that was 'The Conjuring,' James Wan once again manages to capture the story in a way that will have you on the edge of your seats and craving for more.

#3 Veronica

'Veronica' depicts the life of a young, Spanish teenager, who in the absence of an overworked mother and dead father, has to take care of her three younger siblings on her own. When Veronica messes around with an Ouija board, she sets free shadowy spirits that haunt the family home and look to harm her siblings. Veronica must ensure their safety at all costs but soon realizes that the task at hand is more complicated than she originally envisaged. 

Dubbed the 'scariest horror movie of all-time' by numerous outlets, 'Veronica' was the Netflix debut of the horror-genius that is Paco Plaza, who readers may recognize as the director of 2007 Spanish zombie horror film '[Rec].' Punctuated by excellent performances from the young Sandra Escacena, masterful cinematography, and brilliant execution, 'Veronica' has undoubtedly been one of the highlights of the still-fledgling year. 

#2 V/H/S 2

'V/H/S 2' has five storylines: Tape 49, Phase I Clinical Trials, A Ride in the Park, Safe Haven, and Slumber Party Alien Abduction, each of which has a different director. While this might make the movie feel disjointed, the differing storylines make the minute details feel unimportant. 

The way 'V/H/S 1' incorporated a unique brand of storytelling through the medium of found-footage shorts was fascinating, to say the least, and had fans of horror enthused. 'V/H/S 2,' while not following up on any of the storylines from its predecessor, does keep true to the format. The scattershot approach of the movie meant it was not much of a hit with the critics, but its fast-paced direction and numerous storylines meant that audiences are hooked right from the start.

#1 The Babadook

The Babadook, a tall, pale-faced humanoid in a top hat with pointed fingers, around which the movie revolves was the product of director Jennifer Kent's imagination and scared audiences across the globe upon release in 2014. Amelia Vanek has to take care of her six-year-old son, Samuel, alone after her husband died as he drove her to the hospital during labor. Things begin taking a turn for the worse when Sam becomes convinced that an imaginary monster (The Babadook) is out to get him and soon, his erratic behavior is compounded by a series of unexplainable events that plague the family.

The movie was received very well by critics, as well as audiences, with its heartfelt story and brilliant direction earning it lavish praise across the globe. It also received the backing and advocacy of 'The Exorcist' director William Friedkin, who said he had never seen a more terrifying film and that it would 'scare the hell out of you as it did me'.