17 Horror Movies Like The Ring

Looking for horror movies like The Ring?

The Ring was the height of horror films when I was a teen – I remember really scoring when my friend’s mom let us rent it and watch it. It felt like the combination of technology (a video tape that kills you!) and pure thrills, and I LOVED every second of it.

And yes, at 11 I thought it was damn scary. Though, I admit that I rewatched it a few months back and it wasn’t nearly the horror flick I had remembered (go figure, right?) – but it did make me start thinking about movies just like it that I’ve enjoyed in the past. 

If you’re looking for the best horror movies like The Ring, then these are the flicks for you:

Best Horror Movies Like The Ring

1. Ringu (1998)

Ringu is the chilling Japanese film that inspired the American adaptation The Ring.

It introduced viewers to the now-iconic cursed videotape that brings death to its viewers within a week. The film is a masterclass in suspense and subtle horror, relying on psychological terror rather than overt scares.

Fans of The Ring will appreciate Ringu for its original portrayal of the videotape curse and its deeper exploration into Japanese folklore, making it a compelling watch for those interested in the roots of the story.

And honestly, Japanese horror films can be seriously terrifying.

2. Ju-on: The Grudge (2002)

Ju-on: The Grudge delves into the terrifying consequences of a curse born from extreme rage and sorrow. This film presents a series of vignettes that are interconnected, creating a complex narrative about the people affected by this relentless curse.

The eerie atmosphere and haunting visuals closely match the unsettling tone of The Ring, making it a perfect pick for fans who enjoy stories about curses that span generations and the chilling idea that some horrors are inescapable.

3. The Grudge (2004)

The Grudge is the American remake of Ju-on: The Grudge.

It transports the story to Tokyo, where an American nurse encounters the same malevolent curse. The film retains the fragmented, non-linear storytelling of the original, intensifying the horror through an unfamiliar environment and cultural context.

For fans of The Ring, The Grudge offers another look at how curses can infest and affect different lives, highlighting the universal appeal and fear of the unknown.

4. Sinister (2012)

In Sinister, a true-crime writer discovers a box of mysterious, disturbing home movies that plunge his family into a nightmarish experience of supernatural horror.

The film’s use of found footage as a central plot element draws a direct line to The Ring, appealing to fans with its combination of investigative suspense and the slow reveal of a horrifying curse.

The atmospheric tension and looming dread mirror the psychological horror that made The Ring so effective.

5. Pulse (Kairo) (2001)

Pulse combines the horror of ghosts with the anxiety surrounding technology, as spirits begin invading the realm of the living via the internet.

This film’s theme of technological conduit for terror is a conceptual twist on the cursed videotape from The Ring, making it a fascinating film for fans interested in the blend of traditional ghost stories with modern fears.

Its depiction of isolation and existential dread also serves as a compelling parallel to the loneliness and inevitability found in The Ring.

6. The Others (2001)

The Others features Nicole Kidman as a mother living in a dark, secluded mansion with her photosensitive children, convinced that their home is haunted. The film’s slow build and climactic revelations offer a similar narrative satisfaction as The Ring, with its emphasis on atmosphere and psychological twists. 

Fans of The Ring will appreciate this flick for its strong emotional core and the interplay between the living and the supernatural, making it a deeply engaging and eerie experience.

7. Dark Water (2002)

Directed by Hideo Nakata, who also helmed Ringu, Dark Water weaves a haunting tale of a mother and daughter tormented by mysterious occurrences linked to water in their decrepit apartment building.

The film’s use of water as a conduit for the supernatural echoes the eerie ambiance of The Ring, making it a fitting choice for fans who appreciate slow-burning, atmospheric horror.

The psychological depth and emotional stakes heighten the tension, drawing viewers into a deeply unsettling narrative that explores themes of family and loss alongside the supernatural.

8. Shutter (2004)

Shutter is a Thai horror film that explores the chilling consequences when a photographer and his girlfriend discover mysterious shadows in their photographs after a tragic accident.

The film effectively uses the photographic imagery to build a story of haunting that is both visually striking and emotionally engaging.

Fans of The Ring will find Shutter appealing for its innovative take on how the past can haunt the present, its intense suspense, and the unsettling revelation that ties everything together.

9. The Sixth Sense (1999)

The Sixth Sense is renowned for its clever storytelling and the iconic twist ending. 

The film follows a young boy who can see and communicate with the dead, a secret he shares with a disheartened child psychologist. This movie shares with The Ring a deep-seated sense of dread and the exploration of themes surrounding death and the afterlife.

Its focus on the intersection of the living and the spiritual realms makes it a compelling watch for those who appreciate psychological depth intertwined with their scares.

10. The Conjuring (2013)

The Conjuring delves into the terrifying real-life account of paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren as they help a family terrorized by a dark presence in their farmhouse.

Like The Ring, this flick is heavily rooted in the theme of a curse and its impact on a family. With its strong narrative, expert pacing, and chilling atmosphere, The Conjuring offers a gripping, edge-of-your-seat experience that will resonate well with fans looking for a well-crafted story about hauntings and spiritual warfare.

If I’m being honest, The Conjuring films are probably one of the best modern horror series out there.

11. Insidious (2010)

Insidious follows a family who discovers that their comatose child is trapped in a realm called The Further, a limbo populated by spirits and demons. The film’s use of astral projection and its eerie depiction of the spirit world parallel the supernatural explorations in The Ring.

Insidious is notable for its intense atmosphere and creative supernatural encounters, making it an excellent choice for those who appreciate a horror movie that combines traditional scares with a fresh, imaginative concept.

12. The Babadook (2014)

The Babadook is a psychological horror film that delves into the depths of grief and motherhood through the story of a widow and her troubled son who are haunted by a malevolent presence that emerges from a mysterious book.

This film, much like The Ring, uses a unique artifact to unleash its horror, creating a pervasive sense of dread that lingers. It’s a compelling choice for fans of The Ring who appreciate horror that not only scares but also profoundly explores its characters’ emotional turmoil.

13. It Follows (2014)

It Follows presents a terrifying twist on the concept of a curse with its story of a supernatural entity passed between people through sexual encounters.

The relentless nature of the pursuing entity mirrors the inescapable curse of the videotape in The Ring. This film is praised for its originality and back-to-basics approach to horror that prioritizes atmosphere over jump scares, making it a standout recommendation for fans looking for a fresh yet deeply unsettling experience.

I FULLY admit that it also makes me triple think dating in the modern day. Seriously… the film really does make you reconsider.

14. The Woman in Black (2012)

In The Woman in Black, a young lawyer encounters a vengeful ghost haunting a remote village while settling the estate of a deceased client. The film’s isolated setting and the ghostly apparitions echo the chilling ambiance of The Ring.

It’s a great pick for those who enjoy traditional ghost stories with a heavy atmosphere and a slow build-up of suspense that culminates in heart-pounding moments of terror.

15. Silent Hill (2006)

Silent Hill is based on the video game of the same name, where a woman searches for her missing daughter in the eerie, ash-covered town of Silent Hill. Throughout her journey, she encounters surreal and terrifying dimensions populated with strange creatures.

Like The Ring, this film creates a disturbing psychological atmosphere, blending horror with a puzzling storyline that keeps viewers on edge. I would argue that this film is a little bit more fanciful and complex than the right – so be prepared to be confused. 

16. Host (2020)

Host is a modern take on found footage horror, set entirely on a Zoom call during the COVID-19 lockdown. A group of friends accidentally invite a demonic presence into their virtual seance, leading to a series of chilling incidents.

This film captures the contemporary fears of isolation and technology’s dark side, akin to the technological curse in The Ring, making it a topical and terrifying choice for fans of digital-age horror.

17. Hereditary (2018)

Hereditary follows a family unraveling dark secrets about their ancestry after the death of their secretive grandmother.

The film’s exploration of inherited curses and the sinister forces at play makes it a profound companion to The Ring, with both films delving into the horrifying impact of familial legacies.

Praised for its intense atmosphere and unsettling imagery, Hereditary is perfect for those who appreciate horror that is both intellectual and viscerally disturbing.

What is The Ring?

The Ring is a supernatural horror film directed by Gore Verbinski. It is an American remake of the Japanese film Ringu.

The story centers around a mysterious videotape that, according to urban legend, causes anyone who watches it to die seven days later. The film follows Rachel Keller, a journalist played by Naomi Watts, who skeptically investigates the tape after her niece’s mysterious death.

Her investigation leads her to view the tape, setting off a terrifying countdown to unravel the curse. As she digs deeper, she discovers the tape’s connection to a troubled young girl with a tragic past. 

The Ring has been praised for redefining the horror genre with its unique premise and atmospheric tension, making it a seminal film for horror enthusiasts and a chilling introduction for newcomers to the genre.

Final Thoughts: Horror Movies Like The Ring

If you’re looking to have a classic horror movie night (but not too classic), these are the films for you. These horror movies like The Right promise thrills of a certain variety – focused on a slow burn storyline with a real psychologically thrilling backing. 

For those that really like The Ring and haven’t seen the original that inspired it, I’d highly recommend checking that out first – but there are PLENTY of great options that will give you a very similar experience. 

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