It’s time for the annual Cannes Film Festival! And that means there’s a whole new crop of Cannes horror films!

Cannes is one of the renowned and distinguished film festivals in the world, attracting talent and glitz from all over. The festival has proven itself to be an important predictor of award-winning and groundbreaking films. Among all those storied films, composed of equal parts Oscar-bait and innovative indies, are some of the best horror movies.

As I pointed out in last year’s post, films like It Follows, Green Room, Possession, and Evil Dead were all shown at Cannes. Cannes has always recognized good films, even if they do happen to be horror films.

In honor of the festival and the new offerings, check out these upcoming Cannes horror movies. Hopefully we’ll get theatrical release dates shortly!


IN COMPETITION – The big, flashy, coveted category of the Cannes Film Festival. These heavy-hitter films compete for the Palme d’Or, which is the most prestigious award given at the festival and one of the most buzzworthy honors in film.

The Beguiled

“The Beguiled is a thriller from acclaimed writer/director Sofia Coppola. The story unfolds during the Civil War, at a Southern girls’ boarding school. Its sheltered young women take in an injured enemy soldier. As they provide refuge and tend to his wounds, the house is taken over with sexual tension and dangerous rivalries, and taboos are broken in an unexpected turn of events.”

If there’s one thing I know about Nicole Kidman’s character in a scary movie, she is not to be messed with. I love her, I love the creepy period piece element, I love the uncanny southern gothic atmosphere, and I love how fantastically ghostly and intimidating all those lovely southern women are. Sophia Coppola has a unique point of view, especially when it comes to stories dealing in gender conflict (think The Virgin Suicides). Even though this may not be a horror film, it looks like a tense, disturbing film.


The Killing of a Sacred Deer

“Steven, a charismatic surgeon, is forced to make an unthinkable sacrifice after his life starts to fall apart, when the behavior of a teenage boy he has taken under his wing turns sinister.”

We don’t have a trailer for this film yet, but of all the Cannes horror films, I’m looking forward to this one the most. By far. Look at that cast: Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman?!?! Director Yorgos Lanthimos, who won the Cannes Jury Prize for The Lobster and the Prix Un Certain Regard for the absolutely BONKERS Dogtooth? Not to mention the film is purportedly based on a Euripides tragedy. Could it be based on his play Hippolytus?

(I am such a literature nerd.)

It’s already got a November 2017 release date, and will be distributed by A24, who has been killing it with horror movies. Already distributed Cannes horror movie Green Room.


OUT OF COMPETITION – This category is pretty self-explanatory—these films are not competing for the Palme d’Or, but they’ve been deemed noteworthy enough to have earned a spot in the festival.


Blade of the Immortal

“Manji, a highly skilled samurai, becomes cursed with immortality after a legendary battle.

Haunted by the brutal murder of his sister, Manji knows that only fighting evil will regain his soul. He promises to help a young girl named Rin avenge her parents, who were killed by a group of master swordsmen led by ruthless warrior Anotsu.”

I won’t lie, I don’t know anything about this film and I don’t speak Japanese, so the trailer was a little lost on me. But I do know that it is based on a popular manga series. I’m always up for a good revenge thriller starring a cursed anti-hero. This may not be a straight-up Cannes horror movie, I will definitely be paying attention to the post-Cannes reviews for this one.


INTERNATIONAL CRITICS WEEK – This section occurs parallel to the main festival. It was founded in 1962 to showcase talent from all over the world and discover promising new directors. As a rule, International Critics Week screens debuts and second features from emerging talent.


Sicilian Ghost Story

“In a little Sicilian village on the edge of a forest, Giuseppe, a boy of 13, vanishes. Luna, his classmate who’s in love with him, refuses to accept his mysterious disappearance. She rebels against the silence and complicity surrounding her. To find him, she descends into the dark world which has swallowed him up and which has a lake as its mysterious entrance. Only their indestructible love will be able to bring her back.”

Having covered the horror movies at this festival for a second time, I’ve noticed that Cannes horror has a particular aesthetic—pretty, poignant, and often not terribly frightening. But I’m intrigued by this movie. It gives me a little bit of a Pan’s Labyrinth vibe, which I shouldn’t read too much into, but isn’t that a good sign? Who doesn’t love an eerie, ghostly movie about young love?


Which Cannes horror films do you want to see? Leave your comments below!