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It's October and things are getting spooooky! Here are our top picks from 2018 in the horror and horror-adjacent genres, as reviewed in our award-winning* Movies & TV section!

*not actually award-winning

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A Quiet Place (the one everybody loved this year)

A Quiet Place, director/co-writer/actor John Krasinski’s startlingly good monster movie, quickly establishes a lean, mean scenario and then cranks up the tension. This is a ruthlessly efficient primal scream generator that somehow doesn’t leave the viewer feeling ill-used, and audiences are going to go bananas. ANDREW WRIGHT

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Hereditary (the other one everybody loved this year)

Hereditary is brilliant—the whole thing hums with cold electricity that’s guaranteed to unsettle your soul. Aster gracefully illustrates humanity’s ancient fear of predestined fate in a setting, and with a family unit, that feels deeply rooted in reality. CIARA DOLAN

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Mandy (feat. bugfuck crazy Nicholas Cage)

This is a movie that’s kind of sad, kind of lyrical, and kind of rock ’n’ roll; its first half is an earnest, artsy character study, and its second is a greasy, sordid revenge flick. It also features one of Nicolas Cage’s most bugfuck crazy performances, so: Mandy isn’t for everyone. But for those it is for? It’s a hell of a thing. ERIK HENRIKSEN

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Upgrade (an underrated sci-fi thriller with some action and body horror)

Upgrade becomes a sort of poor man’s RoboCop meets a basic cable Black Mirror with shades of The Crow (RoboCop 2: Cyber Cop!). Writer/director Leigh Whannell doesn’t have Paul Verhoeven’s gift for satire, but he does have a horror director’s facility for visceral gore and suspenseful compositions. VINCE MANCINI

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The Terror (terror... in the snow!)

The Terror’s ability to impart palpable sensations of cabin fever and endless-winter madness is more knuckle-whitening than anything its characters might encounter out on the ice. NED LANNAMANN

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The Endless (UFO death cult!)

The film straddles the genres of sci-fi, psychological thriller, and horror, but most of its terror stems from one question: Is something always watching us and manipulating our world? Like a darker, weirder The Truman Show, the unraveling reality of The Endless offers both genuine scares and thoughtful ruminations on the human condition. CIARA DOLAN

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Unsane (Steven Soderbergh's thriller, shot entirely on an iPhone)

It’s never quite clear how much we can trust Sawyer. Claire Foy does a remarkable job keeping us focused on her plight, even as she remains an almost entirely unreliable and unlikeable protagonist. While that element of Unsane rubs rough against the film’s subtext of a woman’s voice and story being ignored or doubted, it doesn’t take away from the film’s creeping, fascinating dread. ROBERT HAM

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Annihilation (Alex Garland's sci-fi thriller... horror... mystery... thing)

Garland’s visual ingenuity is extraordinary. Vines and flowers and fungus sprout from the edges of the frame in pinks, purples, teals, and yellows; that the film wrings so much dread out of these ostensibly cheerful colors is among its many wonders. There are shots so beautiful that you’ll probably gasp in the theater; seconds later, there are things so revolting you’ll feel sick to your stomach. NED LANNAMANN


Read more of the Mercury's movie and TV coverage here!