Stuck at Home? Here’s All the Horror New to Streaming in April 2020

This month's Horrorscope includes the homebound horror classic 'Misery' plus a bunch of other streaming recommendations for horror lovers.

Horrorscope April

Welcome to Horrorscope, a monthly column keeping horror nerds and initiates up to date on all the genre content coming to and leaving from your favorite streaming services.




For many genre fans, horror movies are comfort food. Which, when pressed, can be a hard thing to define, or defend. Is there something soothing about considering worst-case scenarios? Does confronting bad situations on your own terms provide a sense of control? Is a goofy bloodbath just a good fuckin’ time? All of the above, in differing degrees, methinks. And really: to each their own. This is not the time to shame folks for doing what they need to do to keep their heads above water.

Speaking of which: an observation. As several colleagues and denizens of Film Twitter have remarked: even though we all have more time than ever before to power through dusty, back shelf watchlists, a good number of us are actually watching fewer films than usual. There are dozens of lists circulating about what to watch to escape the current situation. But, a theory: perhaps something about this new passive life makes passive entertainment less appealing.

With this hypothesis in mind, here is what’s on the docket this month: I’ve trolled through April’s incoming streaming offerings and assembled a handful of films that rhyme with our current circumstances. Not films that replicate the crisis, but rather films that resonate with its finer details. We’ve got house-bound work-from-home horrors, unwanted guests, and shut-off loners. We’ve even got the return of a show that’s been virtually uniting the horror community since 2018. Yee-haw.

Be sure to peruse the complete list below, calendar in hand, for a full picture of what horror flicks are coming and going form your favorite streaming services this month.


Pick of the month: Misery (1990)

Misery

Synopsis: Novelist Paul Sheldon (James Caan) crashes his car on a snowy, socked-in Colorado road. He is rescued by Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates), who turns out to be the “number one fan” of Paul’s heroine, Misery Chastaine. Bed-bound during his recovery, Paul soon learns that Annie might not be as sweet and wholesome as she seems. 

I’m going to start signing off emails with “From my bed, where I have been hobbled by my number one fan. Please send help.” Just kidding… unless. Not only is Rob Reiner‘s film one of the least-contentious “above board” Stephen King adaptations, but Kathy Bates‘ performance is more than worth the price of admission (one of the few horror performances to be celebrated by the Academy). Also not to be discounted: the relatably fraught and disgruntled WFH vibes from Caan (“Can’t get this in a restaurant in New York!”).

Available on Hulu April 1st.

Yorgos Lanthimos and the clinical curse

The Killing Of A Sacred Deer

Synopsis: Dr. Steven Murphy (Colin Farrell) is a respected cardiovascular surgeon and the patriarch of a precariously perfect family. Lurking in the wings of idyllic suburbia is Martin (Barry Keoghan), a strange teen in search of a father-figure who ingratiates himself into the doctor’s life… with steadily terrifying results.

Yorgos Lanthimos‘ post-The Lobster feature, The Killing of a Sacred Deer, is an unsettling watch on a good day. Lean in, I say. That’s certainly the mantra of Keoghan’s unnervingly sadistic Martin, who has clawed his way into the lives of the upper-class family he holds responsible for his own father’s death. That his grudge is justified doesn’t make his wormy antics any easier to parse. And when the family starts to drop off seemingly in response to Martin’s righteous calls for balance, it’s a total squirm fest. Confined and paralyzed in more ways than one, the family’s perfectly paced descent into madness has a deadpan edge and an utterly dark sense of justice.

Available on Netflix April 5th.

Drive into the return of the wildest live-tweeting event of the month

The Last Drive In

SynopsisThe much-anticipated return of Shudder’s weekly horror-hosted double bill,  streamed live on ShudderTV.

It’s true, folks: “The drive-in will never die.” Iconic horror host/exploitation expert/professional drunk uncle Joe Bob Briggs is back with a brand spanking new season of weekly Friday night double features streamed live exclusively on Shudder TV. We’ve got ten episodes of bad puns, surprise guests, and insightful observations coming our way. The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs has united horror fans virtually for a couple of years now, and for my money, we need that communal co-watch (and all the hasty screenshots that entails) now more than ever.

Premiering live on Shudder TV April 24th at 9 pm ET

Keep odd hours with this genre-mashup masterpiece

Near Dark

Synopsis: A good-hearted farm boy (Adrian Pasdar) reluctantly joins an undead gang when his one-night stand turns out to be part of a family of Southern Gothic, highway-roaming vampires.

“Howdy. I’m gonna separate your head from your shoulders.” Michael Mann has The Keep, Kathryn Bigelow has Near Dark; an underseen foray into genre that registers as nothing shy of a door kick. With top-shelf performances from Lance Henriksen (featuring the evilest rattail in cinema) and the late Bill Paxton, Near Dark is one of the best vampire offerings out there. Stay indoors, keep your distance, and most importantly: kickback to Tangerine Dream.

Leaving Criterion Channel April 31st.

Fresh Blood: Streamable Horror Incoming This Month

Inbound horror genre titles all in one place, for your streaming pleasure.

Netflix

Available April 1st
Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988)
The Girl with All the Gifts (2016)
The Little Vampire (2017)
The Roommate (2011)
Wildling (2018)

Available April 5th
The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017)

Available April 20th
The Vatican Tapes (2015)


Hulu

Available April 1st
The Eternal (1998)
Let Me In (2010)
Misery (1990)
The Sender (1982)
Zombieland (2009)
Repentance (2013)

Available April 16th
What We Do In The Shadows – Season 2 premiere (2020)

Available April 20th
Paranormal Activity 3 (2011)


Criterion Channel

Available April 2nd
Dogtooth (2009)

Available April 5th
Eyes of Laura Mars (1978)


Amazon Prime

Available April 1st
The Brothers Grimm (2005)
I Am Legend (2007)
Repentance (2013)
The Sender (1998)

Available April 10th
IT: Chapter 2 (2019)

Available April 16th
The Lighthouse (2019)

Available April 20th
Paranormal Activity 3 (2011)


Shudder

Available April 1st
Friday the 13th (1980)
Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)
Friday the 13th Part III (1982)
Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984)
Friday the 13th: A New Beginning (1985)
Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives (1986)
Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood (1988)
Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)
The Exorcist (1973)

Available April 2nd
Cursed Films, Ep. 1 “The Exorcist (2020)

Available April 3rd
Halfway to Halloween Hotline, 3-4 pm ET

Available April 6th
Haunters: The Art of the Scare (2017)
Tales of Halloween (2015)

Available April 9th
Cursed Films, Ep. 2 “Poltergeist (2020)
Cursed Films, Ep. 3 “The Omen(2020)

Available April 10th
Halfway to Halloween Hotline, 3-4 pm ET

Available April 13th
Absentia (2011)
Elvira: Mistress of the Dark (1988)
We Are What We Are (2013)

Available April 16th
Cursed Films, Ep. 4 “The Crow(2020)
Cursed Films, Ep. 5 “Twilight Zone: The Movie(2020)

Available April 17th
Halfway to Halloween Hotline, 3-4 pm ET

Available April 20th
Extremity (2018)
Voice from the Stone (2017)

Available April 23rd
0.0 Mhz (2020) – Shudder Original

Available April 24th
Halfway to Halloween Hotline, 3-4 pm ET
The Last Drive-In With Joe Bob Briggs – Season 2 premiere (2020), 9 pm ET

Available April 27th
The Siren (2018)
To Hell and Back: The Kane Hodder Story (2017)

Available April 30th
Wolf Creek – Season 2 premiere (2020)


On Their Way Out: Horror Streaming Titles Expiring Soon

These films have one foot in the grave—bump ‘em to the top of your queue while you can!

Netflix

Leaving April 30th
A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
The Craft (1996)
Friday the 13th (2009)
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
Scream 2 (1997)
Scream 3 (2000)


Hulu

Leaving April 30th
The Tenant (1976)
Captain Kronos: Vampire Hunter (1974)
The Man Who Could Cheat Death (1959)
28 Days Later (2003)


Criterion Channel

Leaving April 31st
Delicatessen (1987)
Near Dark (1974)
The Hunger (1983)

Burgeoning wine mom and talented napper. Secretly just three toddlers in a trenchcoat.