For decades, horror films have been obsessed with torturing teenagers. Whether it’s their endless energy or their general naivety, slasher movie villains and other supernatural beings love to slay the youth. While most of these teens are still in high school when they are targeted, there are also a number of horror films dedicated to killing college kids.
College is meant to be the time when you discover yourself and live alone without your family for the first time. This newfound loneliness already feels emotionally vulnerable, making college students prime targets for horror movie villains. From serial killers to alien snails, the following movies prove that there are scarier things on campus than your dorm roommate not doing the dishes.
‘Black Christmas’ (1974)
One of the best horror movies of the 1970s Black Christmas older than the equally influential Halloween by four years. Set during winter break, the film follows a sorority house that receives troubling phone calls. The girls dismiss this as nothing more than a prank and soon discover that the caller has more disturbing plans.
Devoid of gore and gore, but instead focusing on building suspense, the film creates an effective sense of dread as the killer pursues his victims around the house. The clever use of POV shots puts the audience in the shoes of the killer and adds a layer of voyeurism and misogyny Black Christmas‘s subjects as he observes the unsuspecting women.
Black Christmas can be streamed on Peacock, AMC+ and Tubi.
‘Happy Death Day’ (2017)
One of the best horror comedies of recent years Happy death anniversary is an entertaining, audience-loving film. As a college student, Tree discovers she is trapped in one Groundhog Day-style time warp, things get worse when the day always ends with the same masked figure killing them.
Jessica Rothe is great in the leading role, and she perfectly depicts Tree’s journey from mean sorority girl to caring free spirit. With each loop, Tree learns more information about her situation and who wants her dead, creating a clever comedy with lots of twists and turns that leaves audiences guessing between bursts of laughter.
‘Scream 2’ (1997)
When Scream a smash hit at the box office, a sequel was rushed into production. After Ghostface originally dismembered high school students, the next logical step was to follow the survivors to college. As Sydney (Never Campbell) is still reeling from the murders two years ago, she is attacked by a new killer wearing the same mask.
The horror genre meta-commentary that sets the original apart from its competitors is carried over scream 2because it’s a sequel. With everyone a suspect unless he’s dead scream 2 is one of the best slasher sequels out there and the best introduction to the series behind the original.
scream 2 can be streamed on Paramount+.
A classic of the evil video era, pieces combines elements of the slasher and giallo genres. At a Boston university, a deranged killer is on the loose, targeting female students by using their body parts to create a human puzzle. As more and more women die, a detective tries to track down who is responsible.
Notorious for its extreme violence against women, pieces was temporarily banned in the UK. That same focus on gore and sleaze has also earned it a solid reputation and is considered a cult classic in the golden age of 1980s slasher films.
pieces can be streamed on Shudder, Peacock and Tubi.
“The Drifter” (1981)
A standalone slasher film released a year later Friday the 13th, The Stray follows a group of college students who are being hunted by a WWII uniformed killer. With such a unique costume for the killer, the film contains its own disturbing yet dreamlike atmosphere.
With practical effects Maestro Tom Savini Behind the scenes you know the kills are going to be great, and The Stray does not disappoint as the youngsters are picked up one at a time. The plot and appearance of the killer are similar to My bloody valentineand the two films make a great double play.
The Stray can be streamed on Shudder, AMC+ and Tubi.
‘Urban Legend’ (1998)
One of the best slasher movies of the 1990s urban legend carries his Scream influence on his sleeve. Trading meta-humor for a focus on urban legends, the film finds a murderer murdering college students in set pieces inspired by such popular stories. With her dying friends around her, Natalie (Alice Witt) tries to get to the bottom of the killing spree before she’s the next victim.
what sets urban legend apart from the plethora of others Scream inspired Slashers are his death scenes, and they remain some of the most memorable from this decade of horror. The film also features a great cast of recognizable faces including Jared Leto, Tara Reid, Michael Rosenbaumand even Freddy Krueger himself, Robert Englund.
“The House on Sorority Row” (1982)
After a prank leads to the death of their housemother, the seven members of a sorority try to hide the body during a graduation ceremony. However, someone knows their secret and believes that the girls should be punished. The sisters gradually fall victim to their new guest in this cult classic from the early ’80s.
Prefer suspense over unnecessary blood, The house on Sorority Row was praised for the restraint he shows in his skillfully done killing scenes. This focus on building suspense led to it being compared to the works of Alfred Hitchcockwhile Quentin Tarantino is also a known fan of the film.
The house on Sorority Row can be streamed on Shudder, AMC+ and Tubi.
‘Happy Death Day 2U’ (2019)
Picking up right where the first film left off Happy Death 2U starts with tree (Jessica Rothe) enjoys her freedom from the time warp and her new romance with Carter (Israel Broussard). It doesn’t take long for the loop to start again, and Tree must exit it again to save herself and her new friends.
Happy Death Anniversary 2U attempts to stand out from the original by adding a sci-fi element to the mix while doubling down on comedy. The horror angle is still there as Babyface is still sneaking around, but it feels less exploited in this sequel. Though not as strong as the first entry, Happy Death Anniversary 2U is still a worthy sequel and a fun time.
What awaits us on the other side? Five medical students want to answer this question and are developing an experiment that can cause near-death experiences. On their journey to the afterlife before being revived, they discover that something sinister has followed them.
Supported by an impressive cast led by Kiefer Sutherland, Julia Robertsand Kevin bacon, flat linersis a smart thriller that explores the nature of life after death. While it does not delve as far into its subject as it perhaps should have, flat liners remains one of the most unique thrillers of the 1990s.
‘Night of the Creeps’ (1986)
When two cranky freshmen decide to join a fraternity to meet girls, they are tasked with stealing a body from the local morgue before they can make a promise. When they free a frozen corpse from its containment, the alien slugs inside erupt and infect the townspeople, turning them into zombie-like creatures.
horror legend Tom Atkins Co-stars as Detective Cameron, the officer investigating her burglary and subsequent murders. Atkins steals every scene he’s in, delivering lots of great one-liners while battling the monsters night of horrorthe underrated horror comedy has garnered a cult following since its release.
NEXT: The 10 best horror movies of the 80s, according to IMDb
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