10 Best Teen Slasher Horror Movies, According To Ranker

10 Best Teen Slasher Horror Movies, According To Ranker

The teen slasher subgenre is always a popular one, and Scream (2022) was a hit, proving that audiences like relatable, realistic young adult characters who are also dealing with a killer or villain. Tara Carpenter, Mindy Meeks-Martin, Chad Meeks-Martin, and Liv McKenzie are just as dynamic as OG final girl Sidney Prescott.

High school life is ripe with drama already, making it a clever setting for some scary elements. Horror fans have shared some of their favorite teenage slashers on Ranker, and many of these films are classics that prove that these stories will endure.

Note: Ranker lists are live and continue to accrue votes, so some rankings may have changed after this publishing.

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10 Urban Legend (1998)

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Natalie and Brenda screaming in Urban Legend

The 1998 movie Urban Legend finds Natalie Simon terrified to stay on her college campus as students begin getting murdered based on stories that have been around for years. Natalie can’t believe her eyes and trusts the wrong person as she thinks that Brenda Bates is her best friend.

Without a doubt, the movie is corny, but it has relatable characters, a setting that is creepy yet familiar and comforting, and a good concept. Urban Legend holds up today, but it’s not as popular as other teen slashers, such as Scream, which suggests why it’s not ranked higher.

9 The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

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Texas Chainsaw Massacre 1974

With a 2022 film being released on Netflix, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is a popular franchise and the first movie is also a beloved teen slasher. Horror fans still enjoy rewatching this 1974 film and seeing where Leatherface started.

Final girl Sally Hardesty is a young adult who, fans learn right away, cares deeply about her family, as she learns that people have been stealing from graves in Texas. Since her grandpa passed away, she wants to ensure that everything is okay. Sadly for Sally, she comes across Leatherface and the other villains. Sally is a celebrated strong character and the movie is a reminder of just how tough someone can be when faced with the unimaginable.

8 The Faculty (1998)

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The Faculty 1998 Casey

A different take on a teen slasher, The Faculty tells the story of a seemingly regular and typical high school where something wild and intense is happening. Casey Connor realizes that the teachers at Herrington High School are being incredibly strange and discovers that they have been taken over by aliens.

The Faculty acknowledges that high school can be complicated, hard, and emotional, and adds a science-fiction element that is cool and fascinating to watch. Casey’s peers are also compelling characters.

7 Friday The 13th (1980)

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The Camp Counselors Friday the 13th (1980) Ned

One of the best settings for a teen movie is camp, as characters often have a dramatic time as counselors, making new friends, falling in love, and finding their independence. In the case of Friday the 13th, the young adults at Camp Crystal Lake are sorry that they ever came here after realizing that there’s a killer around.

The famous Jason Voorhees mask is just one memorable part of this movie, and it will be a forever classic thanks to its location, villain, and overall tone.

6 Final Destination (2000)

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Alex panics and tries to leave the plane in Final Destination

In the first Final Destination movie, Alex Browning knows that flying to Paris with his class will be a terrible idea. Although Alex knows that saying that the plane will crash is risky, since people most likely won’t believe him, he has such a horrifying vision that he knows that he has to say something.

A creative and new take on a teen slasher, Final Destination tells a story where death is the villain. Alex was meant to die on that trip and since he interfered with fate, he’s now in trouble. The movie tells a strong story about a smart and determined teenager who doesn’t mind being or seeming different.

5 I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)

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I Know What You Did Last Summer is a teenage slasher that many horror fans enjoy watching regularly thanks to the ’90s vibe and memorable story. Julie James and her friends hit someone with their car and while Julie’s friends want them all to forget about it, Julie is having a horrible time moving on. The film focuses on the following summer when Julie returns home and she and her friend group are stalked by a killer.

The movie falls in the guilty pleasure horror movie category and that explains why it’s ranked fairly high. For some, it doesn’t measure up to Scream, and while it might not be as clever or interesting, the movie is still fun.

4 Scream 2 (1997)

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Scream 2: Mickey and Sidney

Scream 2 continues the hilarious and clever tone of the original movie, and this time, Sidney Prescott is at college. She’s stunned to find out that there is another Ghostface and that her hope for a happy, more peaceful college experience is being put in jeopardy.

Scream 2 blends the entertainment and thrills of a slasher with the emotions of teenagehood, as Sidney is in her late teens and doing what she can to move on, be a grown-up, and learn who she is. While many prefer the first film, Scream 2 is still an excellent sequel that is as dramatic and exciting as Scream.

3 A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)

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Nancy Thompson looking serious in A Nightmare On Elm Street

A Nightmare On Elm Street may focus on the evil and eerie Freddy Krueger, and while the classic has amazing visual effects and kills that fans still talk about, Nancy Thompson’s teenage life makes the movie special.

Nancy and her friend group want so badly to beat Freddy at this game of nightmares, and it seems like Nancy will be successful as she puts everything that she has into this fight. If the movie was about older characters, it wouldn’t be quite the same. The fact that Nancy and her friends are still figuring out who they are and so vulnerable is what gives Freddy his power.

2 Halloween (1978)

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Halloween 1978 young Michael Myers clown

Horror fans love Halloween for its score, the way that Laurie Strode fights back, and the creep factor of Michael Myers, who walks around slowly and yet completely determined to kill. The movie is also a perfect teen slasher as Laurie is attempting a nice Halloween night with her friends and she wants to be a good babysitter, too.

Halloween never fails to be eerie and impressive, and the well-crafted film shows how smart, creative, and powerful a teen film can be. It set the bar very high.

1 Scream (1996)

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Neve Campbell as Sidney Prescott and Skeet Ulrich as Billy Loomis in Scream

Scream will always be many people’s all-time favorite horror film, so its ranking makes sense. The combination of final girl Sidney, her discovery about her boyfriend Billy Loomis being the killer, the takedown of the horror genre, and the funny jokes make it a great experience no matter how many times people watch it.

If Sidney wasn’t a high schooler in this first movie, the story would feel different and less riveting and meaningful. Sidney is coming of age and learning about herself as she fights Ghostface and that makes the story a lot more compelling.

NEXT: Every Scream Movie, Ranked By Scariness

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About The Author

Aya Tsintziras
(1902 Articles Published)

Aya Tsintziras is a Senior Writer at Screen Rant who enjoys writing about TV and movies. She has a Political Science and Media Studies degree from the University of Toronto and a Masters of Journalism from Ryerson University. She lives in Toronto with her husband and has a special interest in teen dramas, reality TV, and horror movies. Aya has been a freelance writer since 2014 and has written about topics ranging from pop culture to travel, parenting, and dating and relationships. When she’s not writing, Aya enjoys working out, reading a good book (usually a thriller) with a cup of coffee, and spending time with friends and family. Aya’s favorite movies are Scream and You’ve Got Mail and her favorite TV shows include My So-Called Life, Gilmore Girls, You, and Seinfeld.

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