Terrifying Horror Movies We’re So Excited to See This Summer

Can’t rest until you get your next horror fix? Us neither. Read on to find out the most anticipated horror releases of the summer, from unsettling to downright terrifying.

Horror Pop Culture Recommendations TV & Movies
A static covered black screen background with three movie posters on it. The one on the left is for "The Watchers", the middle is for "Longlegs", and the right is for "Trap".

Most people think fall is the optimal horror movie season, with the nights getting colder and darker, and Halloween approaching. And while they’re not entirely wrong, most people completely overlook summer as the perfect time to watch horror movies. In fall the environment is getting creepier, but in summer it’s all bright and warm and happy, with kids playing outside and adults hosting barbecues. Now, THAT is the perfect time to watch a horror movie.

The environment inside a dark and chilling movie is a perfect antithesis for the blazing heat of the outside world, allowing you to snuggle deeper into that comforting darkness if you ever need a break from the heat of the sun and the smell of sunscreen. With that in mind, keep reading for some examples of upcoming horror movies for days when you feel like something different than everyday summer life.

An elevated view of a crowd watching a white screen in a movie theater.
IMAGE VIA CANVA

The Watchers – June 7th

Premise: “The Watchers follows Mina, a 28-year-old artist stranded in an expansive, untouched forest in western Ireland. When Mina finds shelter, she unknowingly becomes trapped alongside three strangers who are watched and stalked by mysterious creatures each night.”

A close up on the right side of a blonde white woman's face, with a winged figure made of a skeleton and branches, cloth, and leaves overlaid over her eye. At the bottom it says "The Watchers".
IMAGE VIA WARNER BROS. PICTURES

This movie is just begging for a plot twist, so we’re all hoping that whatever it ends up being is a genuine jaw-dropping reveal rather than a hasty ending tying everything together. Ishana Night Shyamalan’s film debut, the film actually looks very high quality and has many interesting moving parts.

Four people stand facing the viewer on an elevated platform inside a room. The wall nearest to us seems to be glass and they are gazing at the outside world in the foreground. All we can see of the outside is some moss-covered rocks and dead plants.
IMAGE VIA WARNER BROS. PICTURES

A Quiet Place: Day One – June 27th

Premise: “A woman named Sam must survive an invasion in New York City by bloodthirsty alien creatures with ultrasonic sound hearing.”

A black woman in a hat and a yellow sweater covers her mouth in horror. She is in focus in the middle of a blurred crowd; the background being skyscrapers and a bunch of asteroids. Laid over the image are the words "hear how it all began" in red block text.
IMAGE VIA PARAMOUNT PICTURES

The first movie in this series did extremely well, but the second one fell a little short. I think the first one was so exceptional because instead of exploring the story of a cool sci-fi monster, it was more of an insight into human nature and emotions during a tragedy. That being said, I think we’re all ready to know what is going on with these aliens!

A white man with short brown curly hair in a suit stands next to a black woman with a yellow coat and an orange hat. She is holding a tote bag with a black and white cat in it on her shoulder. They are standing at the base of what looks like an escalator looking off screen in trepidation.
IMAGE VIA PARAMOUNT PICTURES

Maxxxine – July 5

Premise: “In 1980s Hollywood, adult film star and aspiring actress Maxine Minx finally gets her big break. But as a mysterious killer stalks the starlets of Hollywood, a trail of blood threatens to reveal her sinister past.”

An aerial shot above the hill that usually has the "hollywood" sign on it; this one has a sign that says "Maxxxine".
IMAGE VIA A24

The (possible) final movie in the X and Pearl trilogy, Mia Goth promises some chilling acting choices in a cool 80s Hollywood setting. Goth has already proved her worth as both villain and victim in X and Pearl, so we’re excited to see what kind of role she’ll play in the story of Maxxxine.

A blonde white woman wearing a green coat walks down a busy street with another woman with black hair and a fur coat next to her.
IMAGE VIA A24

Longlegs – July 12th

Premise: “In pursuit of a serial killer, an FBI agent uncovers a series of occult clues that she must solve to end his terrifying killing spree.”

Two people sit leaning against each other on a carpeted floor at a crime scene. Their upper bodies are hidden by a white sheet. In the middle of the image is the word "Longlegs" in red blocky text.
IMAGE VIA C2 MOTION PICTURE GROUP AND NEON

This movie exemplifies everything about horror that genuinely terrifies me, but I can’t help but love it. The trailer promises a very uniquely unsettling and terrifying movie. With Nicholas Cage?

A brunette white woman with bangs stares at a corkboard with lots of images on it of a weird language.
IMAGE VIA C2 MOTION PICTURE GROUP AND NEON

Trap – August 9th

Premise: “A father and teen daughter attend a pop concert, where they realize they’re at the center of a dark and sinister event.”

A black and white photo of a crowd in the bottom half of a movie poster, blending into black at the top half. Over the image is the word "trap" in red letters with a white man's face seen through the letters. Above that it says "A New M. Night Shyamalan Experience".
IMAGE VIA BLINDING EDGE PICTURES

Another Night Shyamalan movie, this time from the original icon, this film promises a new setting and premise that breaks usual horror conventions. Usually the master of plot twists, Shyamalan’s trailer seems to reveal what should have been the film’s surprise ending but seems to be revealed early on. I guess this means there’s more that we won’t find out until we watch!

A white man with brown hair and blood running down the side of his face is mid-sentence staring off scree. We can't tell where he is but the background looks like a bar or something, there is a giant screen we can see just above his head and what looks like cabinets behind him.
IMAGE VIA BLINDING EDGE PICTURES

Alien: Romulus – August 16th

Premise: “While scavenging the deep ends of a derelict space station, a group of young space colonizers come face to face with the most terrifying life form in the universe.”

A person with light skin and a buzz cut grapples with a weird creature attached to their face. The background is plain red, and we can only see from below their shoulders up. On the bottom it says "Alien Romulus" and has a bunch of credits underneath.
IMAGE VIA 20TH CENTURY STUDIOS

Another continuation of an existing horror universe, Alien: Romulus looks like it’s finally returning to its horror roots. I think the movie is hoping to rekindle fans of the original by shifting the genre to suspenseful horror rather than sci-fi.

A girl with short brown hair and light skin looks in horror off screen. She is holding a sci-fi looking gun and behind her is a modern space station setting.
IMAGE VIA 20TH CENTURY STUDIOS

Beetlejuice Beetlejuice – September 6th

Premise: “Beetlejuice is back! After an unexpected family tragedy, three generations of the Deetz family return home to Winter River. Still haunted by Beetlejuice, Lydia’s life is turned upside down when her rebellious teenage daughter, Astrid, discovers the mysterious model of the town in the attic and the portal to the Afterlife is accidentally opened. With trouble brewing in both realms, it’s only a matter of time until someone says Beetlejuice’s name three times and the mischievous demon returns to unleash his very own brand of mayhem.”

A movie poster with a dark background, two dirty hands holding a long strip of paper with lots of numbers. In the middle of the strip, the numbers "09,06,24" are in green. At the bottom is an ornate green logo that says "Beetlejuice Beetlejuice".
IMAGE VIA WARNER BROS PICTURES

I think we’re all nervous about this one because sequels aren’t often as good as the originals. But with the addition of Jenna Ortega, Hollywood’s rising star, along with most of the original cast, I think the movie will hold its own. It’ll likely prove its worth very quickly, if not as a spectacular continuation of the first story, then as a fun story about family and its run-in with a trickster demon.

Four people stand on grass, staring off-screen. They are all dressed in black and you can see parts of graves behind them.
IMAGE VIA WARNER BROS PICTURES

Speak No Evil – September 13th

Premise: “When an American family is invited to spend the weekend at the idyllic country estate of a charming British family they befriended on vacation, what begins as a dream holiday soon warps into a snarled psychological nightmare.”

A movie poster that is completely black, with the yellow words "speak no evil" in the middle. Below them are some credits and above is "James McAvoy".
IMAGE VIA BLUMHOUSE AND UNIVERSAL PICTURES

James McAvoy’s debut as a psychologically twisted character in the film Split proved that his talent for playing complicated characters leaves nothing to be desired. Even so, Dan Hough stands out in this trailer, playing a very unsettling child who could be either a victim or a perpetrator of the events of the film.

A white man wearing a red and black plaid shirt looks menacingly into a mirror. We can only see from his shoulders up, and the contents on the shelf around the mirror are too blurry to make out.
IMAGE VIA BLUMHOUSE AND UNIVERSAL PICTURES

Some of these movies promise to make history with their new and strange settings, extremely unsettling stories, and (hopefully) elusive plot twists that make our jaws drop. Make sure you check them out!


Interested in different types of horror? Check out our article about Lovecraftian horror.

For more horror for younger readers, take a peek at our bookshelf.

FEATURED IMAGE VIA ELIZABETH BEAVER / BOOKSTR