Best Giallo Horror Movies to Watch Right Now

With the upcoming Malignant, James Wan will return to his horror roots after a deep dive to Atlantis. From the film’s recently-released poster and trailer, there are some heavy nods towards the Italian horror subgenre known as Giallo. With its origins in pulp paperbacks, the title has become synonymous with colorful mysteries involving gruesome deaths, masked killers, and a lot of thinly-veiled eroticism. Giallos have had a significant impact throughout the entire history of film, as movies such as Klute and Eyes of Laura Mars were influenced by the horror-influenced subgenre.

If you are looking to dive into the world of Giallo, look no further! We’ve compiled a plethora of the best examples of the subgenre that you can watch right now.

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A Bay of Blood

Where to Watch: Shudder, Tubi

When we say that the horror genre has been deeply influenced by Giallo, there is no better example than A Bay of Blood’s impact on the modern slasher. When an attempt to kill an Italian countess (Isa Miranda) goes awry, her inheritance ends up being fought over by a cast of colorful relatives that are not above murder to get their way. With its extensive body count and twisty ending, Mario Bava’s most famous film needs to be seen to be believed.

Deep Red

Where to Watch: Shudder, Tubi, Vudu

Arguably considered to be the best example of a Giallo, Deep Red is also one of Dario Argento’s most well-known works. The film tells the story of a musician named Marcus (David Hemmings) who teams up with a tenacious reporter named Gianna (Daria Nicolodi). The two find themselves in a conspiracy involving the murder of Helga Ullman (Macha Méril), a famous psychic. With twists galore and some genuinely impressive kills, make sure you put this Giallo on your watchlist right now.

The New York Ripper

Where to Watch: Kanopy, Shudder, Tubi

If you carry the idea that all Giallos are grimey, gross, and inherently distasteful, you can probably attribute that thought to this Lucio Fulci film. The New York Ripper has carried a long history of critical lashings as an ultraviolent look at the senseless violence permeating American cities. The story is of a New York City cop (Jack Hedley) and a psychoanalyst (Paolo Malco) investigating a string of seemingly random murders of young women. It has been given a more positive reception as a hallmark of the Giallo, faults and all.


Where to Watch: Shudder

We return to the works of Argento with this 1982 release. Although it is the only film on this list exclusively streaming on Shudder, it is still an essential watch. Tenebrae centers around an American author (Anthony Franciosa) that has become the target of a serial killer inspired by his books. With a premise like this, it should be no surprise that this film is often seen as the director’s response to obsessive fans of his work. While criticized during its initial run, it has undergone a critical appraisal and is even considered one of Argento’s best films.


Where to Watch: Shudder, Tubi

If you went to a grindhouse theater in 1974, you would have probably seen this Sergio Martino film in a double screening with The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. Torso, also known by the equally cool name The Bodies Bear Traces of Carnal Violence, focuses on a student named Jane (Suzy Kendall) who becomes the target of a strangling serial killer. While it has its share of gratuitous nudity and violence, it is also a Giallo that examines misogyny in a surprisingly smart way with a character openly admitting to hating women. Having an admitted misogynist defeated by the woman he hates for no reason might not be radical now. However, it has arguably aged much better than other Giallos from the era.

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About The Author
Erin Brady (163 Articles Published)

Erin is an entertainment journalist and critic anchored by a life-long obsession with movies. She currently serves up news and hot takes with Collider, with her other bylines including Fangoria, Film Cred, and Screen Queens. In her spare time, she can be seen writing short stories or watching obscure horror movies.

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