The Halloween season is here and in the run up to the big day I decided to
examine what is considered “scary” in the world of horror movies.

Going with Rotten Tomatoes list of the 31 scariest movies, I decided to
compare each film with another horror film from the same year to determine which one I found scarier.

Two more modern classics have it out in today’s showdown with two films that spawned a ton of sequels, re-imaginings and entire cinematic worlds. So which one is the scariest, Alien or The Amityville Horror?


In deep space, the crew of the commercial starship Nostromo is awakened from their cryo-sleep capsules halfway through their journey home to investigate a distress call from an alien vessel. The terror begins when the crew encounters a nest of eggs inside the alien ship. An organism from inside an egg leaps out and attaches itself to one of the crew, causing him to fall into a coma.

The alien itself is only in the movie for about four minutes. Also, Harrison Ford was offered the role of Captain Dallas in this film as well as George Lutz in The Amityville Horror. He turned down both roles.


Beautiful atmosphere both on the Nostromo and the alien ship.

A premise so perfect it has been imitated for decades.

The intimate setting ramps up the tension.

The cast is amazing.

There are some great jump scares starting with the egg scene and leading into the dinner scene.

Excellent use of atmosphere, lighting and space.


Two moments where the Alien is shot in a way that removes its menace. The first being Dallas’ death. It looked like the thing wanted a hug.

The aliens death in the finale is troublesome because the alien looks worse in the light

The Amityville Horror

Chiller about a family who is terrorized by supernatural forces when they move into a new house in New York State which was the scene of a recent mass killing and the home of an 18th-century satanist. When swarms of flies appear from nowhere and the pipes and walls begin to ooze slime and blood, they call on a local priest to exorcise the evil spirits.

For all the horrific and supernatural elements throughout the film, there are actually no deaths in the film itself. All of the deaths are in flashbacks or nightmares.


Great soundtrack.

“Get Out. …….GET OUT!!!!” Classic

Great cast, especially James Brolin.

Great cinematography.

The house is terrifying.


The movie keeps gearing up like something is about to happen, but never really delivers.

All atmosphere with no payoff except for the one scene with the red eyes in the window.

Rod Steiger is way too over the top for how little he actually does.

The ending is anti-climactic.

Both of these films are cinematic classics and exemplify everything that has drawn viewers to horror films for decades, but only one of them is scary in its premise, location and consistency and that film is…..


Do you agree or disagree? Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below.

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