John Carpenter Horror Films Ranked

CHRISTINE, director John Carpenter, on-set, 1983, ©Columbia Pictures /

The Master of Horror, has only about ten horror movies to his credit.  When I wanted to make this list, that surprised me.  But the are super important to the genre and terrific films.

This isn’t hard to do usually, there is always normally a clear cut number 1.  This list will not feature such movies as Assault on Precinct 13, Escape from New York or Big Trouble In Little China.  While most think those movies are some of Carpenter’s greats, they are simply not horror.  This list is all about his work in horror, he is known as the Master of horror, so lets focus on his work in horror.

Rather than waste my time and yours with reasons why or explanations of any kind for each movie, most of us have seen the films. If you haven’t seen most of these, get to work.  The biggest question mark for me and very many, is “They Live” considered horror?

10. The Ward (2010)

9. They Live (1988)

*** Local Caption *** They Live, , John Carpenter, USA, 1988, V’16, Spielfilme

8. Village of the Damned (1995)

7. Vampires (1998)

6. Christine (1983)

5. The Fog (1980)

4. In the Mouth of Madness (1994)

3. Halloween (1978)

2. Prince of Darkness(1987)

1.The Thing (1982)

I realize this list could piss some people off.  This is not the rule of the entire Horror Syndicate, no.  This is my personal list and I do believe Prince of Darkness is one his finest.  Prince of Darkness is super under appreciated.  Halloween is the film that put Carpenter on the map and it is great, a strong number 3.

Let us know what your list is, hit us up on Facebook or Twitter with your list.



About Ray Marek III 699 Articles
I have been watching horror films since I was 6 years old. The story, one Saturday night, my mom and I were watching movies and she fell asleep on the couch. We had the channel set on HBO and the movie we were watching ended and the next one, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge. This was some time in 1986. I watched then entire film, I was sitting on the edge of my seat. When my mom woke, she asked me what just ended and I told her, “Freddy”. That was all I talked about for weeks and finally she broke down and rented more horror films for me. She rented, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre part 2, Re-Animator, Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives and Halloween II. I watched all and fell in love with horror films forever. 5 Horror Films to Watch Inferno (1980) A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) The Beyond (1981) Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives (1986) Horror of Dracula (1958)