It’s that time of the year when high school students would normally be getting decked out in their best dresses and rented tuxes. This is an especially joyous occasion for seniors; whose patience those last four years is typically rewarded with gymnasium-set glitz and the relief of knowing that high school is almost over.

As different as things are right now, prom doesn’t have to entirely be off the menu. Particularly for horror fans. Technology has made it so that the prom experience is still available. Albeit, a bloody one marred by the stench of death, betrayal, and enduring psychological trauma. These 10 school dance horrors will certainly help raise spirits and other festive evils.

Dance of the Dead (2008)

Met with universal applause during its premiere on the film-fest circuit, Gregg Bishop’s (V/H/S: ViralDance of the Dead is a fun time to be had. Suburbia is suddenly overtaken by the walking dead on prom night, and those voted “least likely to survive” are everyone’s only hope. This is a zom-com without any reproach in its ethos. For juvenile, clever mayhem with a dose of the undead, look no further.

Where to stream: Tubi

 

Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever (2009)

As much as sequels are scoffed at, Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever gives its predecessor a run for its money in the gore department. Ti West (The House of the Devil) achieved atmospheric dread with the aforesaid movie, but, in this continuation of Eli Roth’s classic contagion comedy, the director goes for more visceral setpieces. This is truly a case of “go big or go home.” Picking up where the first film ended, one of the survivor’s infected bodily fluids ends up in the water directly supplied to a nearby high school. This leads to absolute chaos just in time for prom night.

Where to stream: Tubi

 

The Loved Ones (2009)

As with other parts of the Western world, prom is on the brain for students in Australian import The Loved Ones. Despite Brent Mitchell politely declining the invitation to prom by his classmate, Lola Stone, he’s abducted and held captive by her and her equally deranged father. Strapped to a chair and made the brunt of Lola‘s depraved sadism, Brent desperately ponders if he’ll see morning. Sean Byrne’s debut feature-length movie remains a critical darling, and his followup, The Devil’s Candy, is proof he’s no one-trick pony.

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

 

Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II (1987)

Originally intended to be a standalone movie before it was loosely connected to 1980’s Prom NightHello Mary Lou boldly goes down a supernatural route. And, like many sequels in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, the film has a darkly humorous and campy tone that continues to tickle viewers to this day. The eponymous character returns from the dead after dying a tragic death at her prom thirty years ago. Using a relatively chaste student as her vessel, Mary Lou Maloney wreaks havoc on the school and those who had a hand in her untimely passing. The story was continued in Prom Night III: The Last Kiss.

Where to stream: Shudder

 

Tragedy Girls (2017)

Tyler MacIntyre (Patchwork) struck gold with this subversive tale of two true-crime bloggers looking for more than fifteen minutes of fame. In the vein of the original Scream, this pair of teenage besties turns homicidal in exchange for notoriety. They commit murders in the name of an actual serial killer they’ve since been holding hostage. This development not only challenges the friends’ relationship, it also puts them at high risk of being caught by the authorities. Soon, things come to a fateful end on prom night.

Where to stream: Hulu

 

The Club (1994)

Weirdness is a-plenty in this near-forgotten Canadian movie from the 1990s. Andrea Roth, best known by horror fans for her role in The Collector, made her debut in this murderous tale set on prom. She and her classmates partake in the prom activities hosted inside an old castle. Everything seems fun and fine until the attendees start to die. Is the creepy chaperone to blame? Or is there more going on in this relic of ’90s horror?

Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video

 

Prom Night IV: Deliver Us From Evil (1992)

Viewers briefly return to Hamilton High in the final movie of the original Prom Night franchise. Oddly enough, the story shies away from its titular event and seeks refuge inside a summer home that was once a seminary. The two amorous couples choose to skip prom in favor of a private celebration. Little do they know, there’s another guest on the way—a bloodthirsty man of the cloth named Father Jonas.

Where to stream: Tubi

 

The Prowler (1981)

Technically, this 1981 entrant from the golden age of slasher movies is not set in high school or at prom. Rather, The Prowler centers around the murders linked to a college dance. While the movie didn’t fare well commercially, it’s renowned among horror enthusiasts for its makeup effects crafted by genre veteran Tom Savini. In the movie, a killer dressed in WWII fatigues stalks the students participating in a college graduation dance.

Where to stream: Vudu

 

Night of the Creeps (1986)

Here is another classic case of cheating to make the grade, but the inclusion of Night of the Creeps is for the greater good. This 1986 hidden gem is a buffet of delights; the movie successfully combines alien, slasher, and zombie tropes. Directed by Fred Dekker (The Monster Squad), this cult favorite endures because of its reverence for the horror genre—such as referential character names like Chris Romero and Cynthia Cronenberg. Set in college, two unpopular students get caught up in an alien invasion that’s happening under everyone else’s noses. One thing leads to another and the university’s formal becomes ground central for zombified undegrads manipulated by extraterrestrial slugs.

Where to stream: Shudder

 

Prom Night (1980)

The first movie in the Prom Night franchise helped Jamie Lee Curtis earn the title of “Scream Queen.” In the film, her character and her friends are haunted by a reprehensible crime that they never atoned for. Until now. On the night of prom, the mentioned party of friends is preyed upon by a killer, masked and dressed in black, who knows their shameful secret.

Where to watch: Tubi

 

Share your favorite school dance-themed horror movies with the Nightmare on Film Street community on Twitter, in our Official Subreddit, or in the Fiend Club Facebook Group!