20 Best Romantic Horror Movies Ranked


  • The best romantic horror movies blend romance with terror, creating a unique genre-crossing experience for viewers.
  • Some light romantic horror films offer humor in the face of zombie outbreaks or vampire encounters, while darker ones delve into twisted relationships.
  • Rare romantic horror movies explore deep themes of love, survival, and protection, offering a unique blend of romance, gore, and scares.



The best romantic horror movies allow genre-crossing and blurring the boundaries of what the genre can explore. Whether it is because of the vulnerability or the intensity, there is something about romance and horror that complement each other. While there are horror films that may just throw in a relationship as a plot device, there are others that truly combine romantic drama with the terrifying world of horror movies. It is these rare movies that allow the terrifying horror aspects of the story to have greater meaning. It isn’t just about staying alive, it is also about surviving as a couple and protecting their love.

There are some lighter romantic horror movies where a couple in love is trying to survive a zombie outbreak, vampire, or slasher horror, all while maintaining a sense of humor. However, some of the best are usually darker. Romance in horror films often contains twisted relationships of fatal attraction like that of Sang-hyun and Tae-ju in Thirst. Others see tales of offbeat and kindred spirits finding one another like Lee and Maren in Bones and All or the Girl and Arash in A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night. Either way, the best romantic horror movies contain a unique blend of romance, gore, and scares.

20 Life After Beth (2014)

A Man Tries To Protect His Girlfriend After She Turns Into A Zombie

Life After Beth Movie Poster

Life After Beth (2014)

Director Jeff Baena Release Date August 15, 2014 Distributor(s) A24 Writers Jeff Baena Cast Aubrey Plaza , Dane DeHaan , Molly Shannon , Cheryl Hines , Paul Reiser , Matthew Gray Gubler , John C. Reilly Runtime 89 Minutes


While the zombie genre was growing tired by 2014, Life After Beth follows movies like Shaun of the Dead and Fido in presenting something different and unique to the genre. In this case, it was a rom-com in the horror genre. Dane DeHaan stars as Zach, a guy who falls into a depression when his girlfriend Beth dies after a snake bite. However, he soon learns that Beth is alive, and her parents are keeping her locked away in the house. When he finally gets in, he learns the truth.

Beth returned home after her death, but her parents didn’t want to let her know that she had died. She is a zombie and is losing her facilities as time goes on. Zach has to figure out what he will do as more zombies start to rise and Beth loses complete control. The movie received mixed to poor reviews from critics, but most point out Audrey Plaza’s great performance as Beth. The movie has since become a cult classic and remains a fun watch in a crowded zombie genre.

19 Interview With The Vampire (1994)

A Toxic Romance Between Two Vampires

Interview with the Vampire

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Director Neil Jordan Release Date November 11, 1994 Distributor(s) Warner Bros. Pictures Writers Anne Rice Cast Kirsten Dunst , Brad Pitt , Christian Slater , Antonio Banderas , Tom Cruise Runtime 123 minutes


Based on the first novel in The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice, Interview with the Vampire is best described as a toxic love story. Lestat is a vampire who finds a despondent man named Louis whose wife and daughter died. Rather than die by suicide, he agrees to allow Lestat to turn him. The two eventually become partners and survive together in a toxic relationship where Lestat is always mentally and emotionally abusive towards Louis. When they bring in a third person in the young Claudia, it drives them apart.

Anne Rice considered changing Louis to a woman at one point in the movie to appease Hollywood.

The movie, released in 1994, was controversial thanks to the casting of Tom Cruise as Lestat, but even Anne Rice admitted that his performance shocked her with how good it was. Brad Pitt stars as Louis and their chemistry really worked well considering the undertones of the story. The movie was a box office success and received mostly positive reviews. It also earned two Oscar nominations, while 10-year-old Kirsten Dunst earned a Golden Gloves nomination.

18 Lisa Frankenstein (2024)

A Teenage Girl Who Falls In Love With A Reanimated Corpse

Lisa Frankenstein Poster With Kathryn Newton and Cole Sprouse Sitting Atop an Electrified Tanning Bed

Lisa Frankenstein (2024)

Director Zelda Williams Release Date February 9, 2024 Distributor(s) Focus Features Writers Diablo Cody Cast Kathryn Newton , Cole Sprouse , Liza Soberano , Henry Eikenberry , Joe Chrest , Carla Gugino Runtime 101 Minutes


Lisa Frankenstein is a retelling of the classic Frankenstein story, but brought into modern times and focusing on a young goth woman named Lisa (Kathryn Newton) who falls in love with a reanimate Victorian-era corpse (Cole Sprouse). Lisa is still recovering from the murder of her mother at the hands of an axe murderer and has to deal with her dad’s new wife, a terrible woman with a snobby daughter. After being assaulted at a party, Lisa goes to a graveyard and wishes she could be with a Victorian man who died in 1837.

Screenwriter Diablo Cody says Lisa Frankenstein exists in the same world as Jennifer’s Body

Lightning hits the grave, the corpse rises, and Lisa Frankenstein tries to make sure she can keep him alive and upright so they can be together. The horror comes when the Creature begins killing people Lisa brings to him so he can use their body parts to finally make himself whole. The movie was a box office failure and received low critical reviews, but it has a look and design that lends itself to one day becoming a cult classic.

17 Cat People (1942)

A Classic Gothic Horror Movie About A Cursed Romance

Cat People (1942)

Director Jacques Tourneur Release Date December 5, 1942 Cast Simone Simon , Kent Smith , Tom Conway , Jane Randolph , Jack Holt Runtime 73 Minutes

In the 1940s, Val Lewton set out to make intelligent horror movies to compete with the monster movies from Universal Horror. One of his better-produced horror films of that decade came in 1942 with Cat People. The movie stars Simone Simon as Irena Dubrovna, a woman who falls in love with a man named Oliver Reed (Kent Smith), and the two get married. However, Irena believes she is the descendant of the cat people of her village. These cat people will transform into a panther if sexually aroused.

A remake was made in 1982 with Nastassja Kinski in the lead role.

The movie sees Oliver eventually find someone else to love, which drives Irena to jealous rage, and when she becomes convinced she is unknowingly becoming a panther and killing people, things get dark and dangerous for everyone involved. The movie was a box office success when released and remains one of the best horror movies of the 1940s, bettering even the bigger Universal monster movies. It also has a Criterion Collection release and was remade in 1982.

16 Crimson Peak (2015)

A Gothic Romance About A New Bride In A Strange Home

Crimson Peak Movie Poster

Crimson Peak

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Director Guillermo del Toro Release Date October 13, 2015 Distributor(s) Universal Pictures Writers Matthew Robbins , Lucinda Coxon , Guillermo del Toro Cast Charlie Hunnam , Jessica Chastain , Tom Hiddleston , Mia Wasikowska , Doug Jones , Burn Gorman Runtime 119 minutes


15 Underworld (2003)

The Vampire Selene Falls In Love With A Hybrid Named Michael Corvin


Underworld (2003)

Release Date September 19, 2003 Director Len Wiseman Cast Kate Beckinsale , Scott Speedman , Michael Sheen , Shane Brolly , Bill Nighy Runtime 122 Minutes

Underworld is an action-heavy franchise with horror elements that ocuses on a long-running war between vampires and lycans. The vampires often live in large castles and have an almost caste and military system they live under, while the werewolves live underground, anxious to break their shackles. There are major gun fights and action scenes, but at the end of the day, it is a monster mash, with vampires fighting werewolves. At its center, though, this is a love story between the vampire Selene (Kate Beckinsale) and the human-turned-hybrid Michael Corvin (Scott Speedman).

Michael gets caught in a fight between the vampires and lycans, only to learn he is a descendant of the Corvinus bloodline and someone whose blood could help create a vampire-werewolf hybrid. When the lycan Lucian bites him, Michael begins to change and when Selene bites him, he becomes a powerful hybrid who could turn the tide of the war. The movie is a guilty pleasure but was successful and spawned three sequels and a prequel. The love story was so integral that when Michael died in later movies, the franchise couldn’t maintain its popularity and ended.

14 Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

A Vampire Love Story About The Perils Of Immortality

Tom Hiddleston embraces Tilda Swinton in 'Only Lovers Left Alive'

Only Lovers Left Alive

Release Date December 25, 2013 Director Jim Jarmusch Cast Tom Hiddleston , Tilda Swinton Runtime 123minutes

Jim Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive is one of the strangest vampire love stories ever told in a movie. The story follows two ancient vampires named Adam and Eve, played by Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton, respectively. They have been married for centuries but live far apart when the movie begins. However, when Eve realizes that Adam might be considering taking his own life and ending things for good, she goes to him to show him there is still something worth living for.

The romantic horror movie is an interesting mix of philosophical debates and scenes of almost hypnotic meditation. In addition to a unique romance focusing on a centuries-long relationship, Only Lovers Left Alive explores the deeper meaning behind immortality and what living forever does to a soul. The 2013 movie received mostly positive reviews and went on to win an award at Cannes for its score.

13 The Shape Of Water (2017)

A Forbidden Romance With A Subterranean Soulmate

Elisa (Sally Hawkins) and the amphibian man (Doug Jones) look at each other in The Shape of Water

The Shape of Water

Release Date December 1, 2017 Director Guillermo del Toro Cast Richard Jenkins , Doug Jones , Octavia Spencer , Michael Shannon , Sally Hawkins , Michael Stuhlbarg Runtime 123 Minutes

Guillermo del Toro makes no secret of his love for both fairy tales and classic horror movies. It is with the love of both of those things that he made The Shape of Water in 2017. This is a movie that brings the closest thing to the Gill-man from The Creature from the Black Lagoon back to the big screen in many years. In this movie, the sea creature was considered a god to the people living by the South American river where he was captured by the U.S. government’s military forces and brought to the country to study.

The horror part of the romantic horror movie involves the vicious killing The Shape of Water’s creature does, as well as the all-too-real human monster in Colonel Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon). However, the love story is what carries the movie, as a custodian (Sally Hawkins) at the facility holding the Amphibian Man sees him and slowly falls in love with the creature, finally fighting to help him escape from captivity. The Shape of Water picked up 13 Oscar nominations, winning for Best Picture and giving del Toro an Oscar for Best Director.

12 Warm Bodies (2013)

Romeo And Juliet With Zombies

Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer in Warm Bodies

Warm Bodies

Release Date January 31, 2013 Director Jonathan Levine Cast Nicholas Hoult , Teresa Palmer , Dave Franco Runtime 97 Minutes

Warm Bodies is a romantic comedy horror movie about a zombie who falls in love with a still-living woman that’s a direct reimagining of Romeo and Juliet. Based on the novel by Isaac Marion, R (Nicholas Hoult) is a zombie who mostly lumbers around an airport. He still thinks like a human and narrates the movie through inner monologs. However, that changes when he sees Julie (Teresa Palmer) and suddenly wants to get to know her. The problem is that her father is a zombie hunter whose only goal is to exterminate all zombies.

The love story develops here, with Julie believing there might be a cure that could revert R into a living human again, but she has to find it before her dad kills the zombie she loves. Warm Bodies is an interesting movie because it takes viewers into the head of a zombie and presents one of the undead as a sympathetic individual who deserves to find happiness. This movie also lets loose with horror, as there are also zombies who are deadly dangerous as well as humans who will shoot first and ask questions later.

Warm Bodies is available to stream on Max.

11 Spontaneous (2020)

An Explosive Romantic Horror Movie

Dylan and Mara look on in horror in Spontaneous.


Release Date October 2, 2020 Director Brian Duffield Cast Payton Lepinski , Katherine Langford , Yvonne Orji , Chelah Horsdal , Dolores Drake , Kaitlyn Bernard , Charlie Plummer , Piper Perabo , Laine MacNeil , Rob Huebel , Hayley Law Runtime 97 minutes

Spontaneous is a movie that straddles the line between a teenage comedy-drama and a horror movie romance. 2020’s Spontaneous is about a school where the students start spontaneously combusting. They explode without warning, leaving blood and guts all over the room and anyone unfortunate enough to be close to them. The drama sees Mara (Katherine Langford), trying to figure out her place in the world while she is always in danger of exploding at any minute.

The spontaneous human combustion in Spontaneous is a metaphor for the experiences and feelings of teenagers attending high school, and the explosions symbolize the bottled anxiety they feel trying to fit the expectations of society, family, and their peers. Charlie Plummer is also in top form as Dylan, Mara’s love interest in the movie and the one person who seems to really understand her. Spontaneous also delivered an unexpected ending, and the movie received almost universal acclaim, with a 96% on Rotten Tomatoes.

10 Beast (2017)

Serial Killers And Paranoia Make For A Strained Horror Movie Romance

two characters looking off camera in Beast.

Beast revolves around 27-year-old Moll Huntford (Jessie Buckley) following a series of murders on the island of Jersey, targeting women of her age. The entire community is on edge when Moll meets Pascal (Johnny Flynn). As Moll and Pascal’s relationship blossoms, her family remains entirely unsupportive. The worst part, however, is that many consider Pascal to be a suspect in the murders that have shaken the island community. The story was influenced by a real killer known as the Beast of Jersey.

Moll and Pascal must navigate their relationship while staying safe from the many external threats to themselves and their relationship. Beast won a British Academy Film award for Michael Pearce and Lauren Dark’s directorial debuts and was nominated for Best British Film. The movie also received high critical praise, certified fresh while sitting at 92% on Rotten Tomatoes, while audiences rated it at 73%.

9 Sun Don’t Shine (2012)

Deep Exploration Into The Lengths Lovers Will Go To

two characters looking at each other in Sun Don't Shine.

The 2012 movie Sun Don’t Shine follows an intense road trip between a couple, Crystal (Kate Lyn Sheil) and Leo (Kentucker Audley), and it’s among the more sinister romantic horror movies. The atmosphere of this trip starts out tense and uneasy and becomes increasingly ominous, as the couple progress on their journey toward their new future together.

The events that have led Crystal and Leo to this moment are slowly revealed as the couple drive on, and audiences slowly learn the reason for their trip. The film explores a complex relationship and the lengths that one individual will go to help another. Sun Don’t Shine won the Chicken & Egg Emergent Narrative Woman Director Award at South by Southwest and was also nominated for two Gotham Independent Film awards. It received a limited release and remains an underrated romantic horror movie.

8 A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night (2014)

Noir Vampire Romance In Iran

The Girl (Sheila Vand) about to bite Arash's (Arash Marandi) neck in A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night.

Ana Lily Amirpour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night is set in an Iranian ghost town called Bad City, and follows the Girl (Sheila Vand). The Girl is a lonely young vampire who roams the streets alone at night in search of prey, and one night meets the equally lonely Arash (Arash Marandi). The bond between the Girl and Arash grows, and they soon team up to escape their lives together.

The Girl is both an isolated teenager and a ruthless predator, who moves between being the villain and the heroine in a horror film that is more focused on the complexities of the individual than it is on good and evil. Ana Lily Amirpour’s movie was also turned into a six-part graphic novel series that explores the Girl’s backstory and has overall been praised for its haunting aesthetics and feminist themes. The movie is almost universally acclaimed on Rotten Tomatoes with a 96% rating.

7 Spring (2014)

Disturbing Romantic Horror With A Millenia-Wide Age Gap

two characters looking at each other in Spring horror movie.

Spring follows Evan (Lou Taylor Pucci), a young American who, after a bereavement, decides he needs a change in his environment and finds himself traveling to Italy. In the south of Italy, Evan meets the elusive Louise (Nadia Hilker) and becomes determined to get to know her, leading to one of the more disturbing romantic horror movies. As Evan wins Louise over, the terrible secret underpinning their relationship is slowly uncovered.

Spring is the story of two young people from different parts of the world who happen to find each other and fall in love, as well as a monster horror film that questions whether love can overcome even the most terrifying obstacles. Spring won Lou Taylor Pucci a Best Actor award at the Austin Fantastic Fest and a Directors to Watch For award at the Palm Springs International Film Festival.

Spring is available to stream on Shudder.

6 Bones And All (2022)

Award-Winning Romance With Cannibals


Bones and All

Release Date November 23, 2022 Director Luca Guadagnino Cast Chloe Sevigny , Timothee Chalamet , Taylor McKenzie , Michael Stuhlbarg , David Gordon Green , Mark Rylance Runtime 130 minutes

Timothee Chalamet and Taylor Russell star in one of the most widely known modern romantic horror movies, Bones and All. Based on Camille DeAngelis’ eponymous novel, a young cannibal named Maren is abandoned by her father, and so she decides to go to Minnesota to find her estranged mother. Along the way, she meets Lee, who shares in her proclivities — specifically her taste for human flesh.

Bones and All chronicles the pair’s road trip across the country as they fall in love and engage in their twisted indulgences, leading to Bones and All‘s twist ending that has to be seen to be believed. There’s family drama and plenty of gore to go around, as the film isn’t solely about cannibalism. Luca Guadagnino’s film won two awards at the Venice Film Festival and one at the Las Vegas Film Critics Society Awards, as well as being nominated for a slew of other accolades.

Bones and All is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

5 The Fly (1986)

A Transformative Experience Destroys Jeff Goldblum’s Relationship

Jeff Goldblum and Geena Davis as Seth and Veronica kissing in The Fly.

The Fly

Release Date August 15, 1986 Director David Cronenberg Cast Jeff Goldblum , John Getz , Geena Davis Runtime 96 minutes

The Fly is certainly one of the most famous cult classic films, and despite its infamy for its many gross-out scenes, it’s also a well-put-together love story and one of the best romantic horror movies. David Cronenberg’s sci-fi horror remake sees scientist Seth Brundle (Jeff Goldblum) and journalist Ronnie Quaife (Geena Davis) strike up a relationship after the former asks the latter to document his newest invention. However, one of his experiments goes horribly wrong.

In the midst of their budding relationship, Ronnie is forced to watch Seth’s horrific transformation into giant man/fly hybrid. Their tragic love story is a central part of Cronenberg’s horror masterpiece, and the movie was so popular it spawned both a sequel and a comic book series. The Fly won an Oscar for Best Makeup, as well as three Saturn awards for Best Actor (Goldblum), Best Makeup, and Best Horror Film.

The Fly is available to stream on Max.

4 Thirst (2009)

Award-Winning Korean Romantic Horror Featuring Unwanted Vampirism

Two characters looking at each other in the K-drama Thirst.

The 2009 Korean horror movie Thirst introduces Sang-Hyun (Song Kang-ho) a respected and devoted Roman-Catholic priest who, through no fault of his own, becomes a vampire — and the ensuing story makes Thirst an engaging romantic horror movie as well as a solid yet unconventional vampire movie too. Sang-Hyun then meets and falls in love with Tae-Ju, as he tries to navigate his newfound existence.

The relationship between Tae-Ju and Sang-Hyun exposes how they are fundamentally different in their morals and their approach to their new life. What follows is the study of a relationship between two entirely different individuals who find themselves facing the same fate together. The movie has since become a cult classic. Thirst won a staggering 11 awards, including accolades at the Cannes Film Festival, the Chunsa Film Art Awards, and the Blue Dragon Film Awards.

3 Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)

Adaptation Of The Iconic Gothic Romantic Horror Novel

Gary Oldman in Bram Stoker's Dracula.

Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Release Date November 13, 1992 Director Francis Ford Coppola Cast Gary Oldman , Winona Ryder , Anthony Hopkins , Keanu Reeves , Richard E. Grant , Cary Elwes Runtime 2h 8m

Francis Ford Coppola’s 1992 adaptation of Bram Stoker’s novel stays true to the co-existing romance and horror of the source text and is one of the best romantic horror movies as a result — pulling what made the original story so timeless and translating it seamlessly to the screen. Having never recovered from the death of his beloved wife Elisabeta, Dracula (Gary Oldman) sets out to track down Mina Murray (Winona Ryder), whom he believes to be the reincarnation of his late wife.

In one of the most iconic vampire tales, the formidable Dracula will stop at nothing to regain his lost love. Alongside Dracula’s ruthlessness and manipulation, the movie presents the tale of an everlasting love that transcends lifetimes. Bram Stoker’s Dracula won three Oscars for Best Costume Design, Best Sound Editing, and Best Makeup. It also did an awards sweep at the Saturn Awards, scoring nine accolades.

2 Thelma (2017)

Critically Acclaimed Norwegian Horror About Romance And Self Discovery

two characters laying next to each other in Thelma.

The 2017 Norwegian supernatural horror Thelma follows the title character (Eili Harboe) who moves to Oslo to attend university, and it’s one of the best romantic horror movies of all time. She begins to escape her sheltered life as she gets to know fellow student, Anja (Kaya Wilkins). As Thelma discovers a growing attraction to Anja, a number of inexplicable catastrophic events start to happen around her.

Thelma is thrown into unfamiliar territory both in her overwhelming desire for Anja and in the sudden powers that she cannot control. Thelma simultaneously begins to discover herself and a world of dangerous supernatural powers in this romantic horror movie. Thelma is critically acclaimed and has 13 awards to its name, winning accolades at the Amanda Awards, the Norwegian International Film Festival, the San Diego Film Critics Society, and more.

1 Let The Right One In (2008)

Complex Coming-Of-Age Romance Between A Boy And A Vampire


Let the Right One In

Release Date December 12, 2008 Cast Lina Leandersson , Karin Bergquist , Kåre Hedebrant , Henrik Dahl , Per Ragnar Runtime 114 minutes

The Swedish horror Let The Right One In is a tender romantic teen drama about two outcast 12-year-olds who find solace in each other, and it’s definitively one of the very best romantic horror movies. The film follows Oskar as he meets his new next-door neighbor, Eli, and the two gradually become friends. The connection between Oskar and Eli takes center stage throughout, with the horror elements interwoven in such a way that they enhance the coming-of-age and young romance aspects of the story.

Despite the fact that Eli feeds on human blood and Oskar fantasizes about murder, the two teenagers form a tender and innocent relationship that gives them both a sense of belonging. Let Me In, the American adaptation of the movie was released in 2010, starring Chloe Grace Moretz. The original Swedish horror has won over 30 accolades at various ceremonies and festivals, including the Saturn Awards, the Tribeca Film Festival, the Empire Awards, and many more.

Let The Right One In is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

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