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Horror is a genre that stimulates the mind more than any other, horror movies create fear and panic within us, yet for some reason we can’t resist the urge to watch them (though we regret it at night). Some of the greatest movies ever made have been of the horror genre, and have struck fear into the hearts of audiences for decades. (Read: Best movies of Jackie Chan)

Horror need not be about ghosts and demons, it could even be about human beings. In fact some of the best horror movies do not involve workings of the supernatural, they simply show the dark side of human nature. Here is a list of movies we believe to be the greatest and most terrifying horror movies ever:

1) Psycho (1960)- This is the greatest horror movie ever made. It is also Alfred Hitchcock’s most famous movie. It’s about a serial killer named Norman Bates who suffers from a split personality, one is his own and the other more dominant one is of his mother who he murdered when she found a lover (Norman killed him too). The movie is quite different from what you’d expect, the girl we think is the protagonist is murdered by Norman half through the film while she’s in the shower. (Read: 3 great classic urban legends that we still hear of)

The shower scene (for reasons other than what you may think) is one of the most iconic Hollywood scenes and the screeching tune that plays while Norman stabs Marion has long since been associated with danger and fear. Psycho features no ghosts, nor monsters or zombies, yet it much more terrifying, even today over fifty years after it hit theatres. Hitchcock was the master of horror, and this is considered to be his masterpiece. Norman Bates was voted as the 2nd greatest movie villain by the American Film Institute.

2) The Silence of the Lambs (1991) – This movie, like psycho is not a pure horror movie as such as it falls in the crime- thriller genre as well. The movie is about a cannibalistic serial killer named Dr Hannibal Lecter  (now imprisoned) whose expertise an FBI agent Clarice Starling uses to help nab another serial killer named “Buffalo Bill” who kills women and skins them. The American Film Institute named Dr Hannibal Lecter as the No 1 movie villain because he’s so scary.

3) The Exorcist (1973) – This is a supernatural horror film about a young girl possessed by a demon and her mother’s attempts to save her through an exorcism using two priests. This movie is terrifying in all aspects and should only be watched if you don’t mind not being able to sleep properly for at least a week.