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Best Scary Movies For Date Night

Updated on May 20, 2011

Since the dawn of time,

there has never been a more efficient way of courting one's current lover than forcing them to endure two hours' worth of thrills and chills that can only be found in a horror flick. Buttered popcorn, cozy blankets, a dark room, and a smidge of fear for invisible entities or girl-thirsty hitchhikers can make for one cozy evening. Yet choosing the right scary movie for the occasion can be tricky - it's best to not traumatize your poor partner so that they will never trust your movie-selecting skills again. Generally, avoiding gore-infested slashers and aiming for psychological thrillers or paranormal hauntings increases chances for post-film snuggles.

Here's my carefully crafted selection of horror movies that perfectly compliment a romantic mood. You may notice that I included 3 important summary scales that show how high each movie rates on its Scare Factor (how scary the experience), the Lasting Power (how long post-film hyperparanoia lasts so you may take advantage of spooning willingness), and Convincing Effort (how much effort it will take to convince your cuddlebutt to watch it).

The Strangers (2008)

Simple yet creepy, The Strangers features a psychological misadventure for one doomed, isolated cabin-locked couple. Just scary enough to keep you on your toes but not so disturbing to cancel post-film fun time, this flick will get both your hearts jumping. Although somewhat of a slow mover, this great date night scary movie offers clever cinematography and creepy tunes. Expect post-paranoid nights sleeping with Mr. Snuggles.

Ladies, this film also offers subliminal romance training. The featured boyfriend illustrates an okay example of a protective caretaker, yet he still makes some really dumb mistakes that ultimately leads his girlfriend to harm. During the "What would you do" discussion after the film, it's easy to mold your boy toy's actions in to something that benefits you during an emergency, while still making him feel manly. Plus, chatting about protecting each other can become a potent aphrodisiac.

Date Night Booster: The creeped out, need-to-be-held mood is long lasting, and may even score you some protective cuddles for more than one night.

The Strangers Highlights

The Village (2004)

Not only a great horror movie for beginners (to promote trust that scary movies aren't that scary), but The Village is also a promising date night choice due to its reliable hand-holding potential. Although probably the tamest on the scare-factor scale, this flick offers some great jumper moments, a fascinating premise, and a twist only M. Night Shyamalan can deliver.

Add one blind female, one mentally challenged friend, and one conservative town to a monster-infested forest and you have the foundation for a jaw-dropping psychological thriller. The downside: this isn't a conversation-on-the-side-and-still-be-able-to-follow-the-plot kind of motion picture, as attention is required to properly enjoy it. However, there are a few cutesy-wootsy moments to promote some closeness between you and your cupcake.

Date Night Booster: High hand-holding potential.

Paranormal Activity (2007)

What makes Paranormal Activity powerful is the initial mood going in. Set the mood right with a lightless room and a huge T.V. screen. Although highly controversial, there are no cheap thrills in this haunt fest - no booming music, no predictable twists. It's as simple as a young couple setting up a camera in their bedroom hoping to record evidence of paranormal happenings, and guess what? They do.

Like The Strangers, the boyfriend's character can become a valuable training tool. Although adding some genuine comic relief, he still breaks several dating rules:

  • Don't sleep with the bedroom door open.
  • Don't let the girl (and evidently the target) sleep closest to the (open) door.

All in all, Paranormal Activity is a pretty tame supernatural thriller with overnight staying power. Make sure you watch the original theatrical version for the best, adrenaline-pumping finish (note that there are at least 3 different endings).

Date Night Booster: Pretty much guarantees at least one sleepless night. Use your time not sleeping wisely.

The Crazies (2010)

A surprisingly good compromise for zombie-lovers and chick-flick addicts. You just can't help rooting for the two main characters as they attempt to escape a dangerous government goof-up and cannibalistic neighbors. Like any satisfying zombie apocalypse, expect some mild-mannered blood and gore, but don't let this scare you away. It's just enough to satisfy you inner zombie-slasher but not enough to rival Dawn of the Dead. Basically, The Crazies presents a solid plot line, good acting, some intimacy-encouraging cuteness, and a haunting "what if" scenario. It won't leave you terrified to sleep with the lights off, but it provides some thought-provoking after-movie discussion.

Date Night Booster: Provides excellent conversation topics that reveal important personal beliefs - politics, government conspiracies, germophobia, etc. - that can last for hours after you stop watching. 

The Exorcist (1973)

Some say older scary movies are less frightening because of a lack of spectacular special effects. This is what you can say to entice your lovebucket to watch this disturbing, disgusting, creepy classic. The original Exorcist is the one that started it all, the paranormal craze - and for good reason. There's no time to hide or blink from this film's unexpected scares, and the famous stairway scene will leave you and your muffincakes reeling for many moons after. You don't even have to know what's going on to be spooked, which makes this film good background entertainment, allowing date chit chat to take the main stage. Regardless, prepare for some haunting memories.

Date Night Booster: You may get a screaming demo.

Enjoy your date night scary movies, and happy snuggling. 


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    • Penelopesweet profile image


      6 years ago

      I can't decide between the Exorcist and Paranormal activity... Great movies both of them and great list thank you

    • self absorbed profile image

      self absorbed 

      6 years ago from Canada

      Great list, also a great test, if you are a big horror fan and your date can't make it through one of these, they might be the one for you.

    • JenPsych profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Haha, sounds like you have some foolproof rules there, tsmog! I usually prefer to watch scary movies with a designated "bait friend" - usually a slow runner. And I always plan an escape route as well! Love horror movies, but you can never be too careful :)

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 

      7 years ago from Escondido, CA

      Great hub , , ,generally speaking I have rules for horror flicks

      1) never watch alone - even at a theater

      2) preferably watch with someone you trust

      3) If not yes on #2, wear silver cross and have garlic in pocket

      4)remember safety first - or chant I am safe, I am safe, I am safe

      5) always have hand available for date and make sure her's is available for me

      6) Be ready for stares when I begin to laugh hysterically

      7) have an escape system in place - isle, remote, shutting eyes

    • ianleverette47 profile image


      7 years ago from Brinston, Ontario Canada

      Yes -- The Exorcist.

      When it first came out, there was a lot of rumbling going on in the Catholic Church that it should be banned and shut down. This only created not only a media craze but a fan craze as well. We got there 2 hours ahead and still missed out on the first showing in Ottawa.

      I guess some nuns were sent in to check it out.

      They were obviously not impressed or too scared to watch the rest.

    • JenPsych profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Thank you, ianleverette47! If I may ask what movie you waited in line for so long? The Exorcist? I'm surprised that nuns would willingly sit through that- some pretty crazy stuff! And yes, most scary movies are best appreciated in a large, packed theater!

    • ianleverette47 profile image


      7 years ago from Brinston, Ontario Canada

      I've downloaded all the latest horror flicks with the secret software tools I was going to share with all the hubbers. But Hubpages put a stop to that, so I wrote an article about Hubpages after they lowered my score a little -- kind of a warning and penalty to me. And my intentions were so admirable -- so I thought -- Not!

      You and I think alike -- with movies anyway. Sure you're not a TomBoy? Sorry - another one of my hubs.

      I went to the 2nd showing here in Ottawa way back in my Government days -- missed the 1st showing by 4 people and had to wait in line another 2 hours. Best movie I've ever seen. Four nuns walked out of the theater during the head spinning and cross thrusting and one girl fainted in the isle right beside me. They dragged her out.

      You really have to see this movie in a good sized theater with lots of people, darkness and the volume at 10. It's still scares me.

      Hmmm - I wonder where my Teddy bear is?

      Voted Up!


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