The First Four New Horror Movies of 2023 Were Released Today

It’s the first week of a new year, and 2023 is going to be absolutely loaded with new horror. As always, we’ll be providing you with week-by-week previews of what’s being released.

Let’s get right into things, shall we?

Here are the first four horror releases of 2023, which are all out NOW!

The 2023 horror season kicks off with the critically acclaimed M3GAN (read Meagan’s review), which is now playing in theaters. The premise? It’s essentially Annabelle meets Terminator!

M3GAN is a marvel of artificial intelligence, a life-like doll programmed to be a child’s greatest companion and a parent’s greatest ally. Designed by brilliant toy-company roboticist Gemma (Get Out’s Allison Williams), M3GAN can listen and watch and learn as she becomes friend and teacher, playmate and protector, for the child she is bonded to.

When Gemma suddenly becomes the caretaker of her orphaned 8-year-old niece, Cady (Violet McGrawThe Haunting of Hill House), Gemma’s unsure and unprepared to be a parent. Under intense pressure at work, Gemma decides to pair her M3GAN prototype with Cady in an attempt to resolve both problems—a decision that will have unimaginable consequences.

Produced by Jason Blum and James WanM3GAN is directed by award-winning filmmaker Gerard Johnstone (Housebound), from a screenplay by Akela Cooper (Malignant, The Nun 2) based on a story by Akela Cooper and James Wan.

Candy Land review

Written and directed by John Swab (Ida Red), the horror movie Candy Land is also available now courtesy of Quiver Distribution, playing in select theaters and up for grabs on VOD outlets.

Candy Land follows Remy (Olivia Luccardi), a seemingly naïve and devout young woman, who finds herself cast out from her religious cult. With no place to turn, she immerses herself in the underground world of truck stop sex workers a.k.a. “lot lizards,” courtesy of her hosts, Sadie (Sam Quartin), Riley (Eden Brolin), Liv (Virginia Rand) and Levi (Owen Campbell).

“Under the watchful eye of their matriarch, Nora (Guinevere Turner), and enigmatic local lawman, Sheriff Rex (Billy Baldwin), Remy navigates between her strained belief system and the lot lizard code to find her true calling in life.”

John Swab and Jeremy M. Rosen (Ida Red) produced the new horror movie Candy Land, with Robert Ogden Barnum and Michael Reiser serving as executive producers.

Candy Land is my first venture into the horror genre,” said Swab. “While it’s more of a traditional slasher film, we wanted it to have no boundaries and push the limits. I’m in love with this film and find it to be an authentic tale with the nostalgia of the great 90s cult cinema that inspired me; Bully, Scream, Welcome to the Dollhouse. In a world where people are afraid to take chances, this film and everyone who helped make it pulled no punches.”

A “gripping whodunit that’s also an Edgar Allan Poe origin story,” Netflix‘s The Pale Blue Eye first came to select theaters last month, and the film is now streaming only on Netflix.

The Pale Blue Eye was directed by Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart, Antlers) and stars Christian Bale alongside Harry Melling as Edgar Allan Poe.

Christian Bale portrays retired detective Augustus Landor, tasked with investigating a series of murders. At the center of the murder-mystery is none other than Edgar Allan Poe.

Gillian Anderson (The Crown), Lucy Boynton (Bohemian Rhapsody), Charlotte Gainsbourg (Antichrist), Toby Jones (First Cow), Harry Lawtey (Industry), Simon McBurney (Carnival Row), Timothy Spall (Mr. Turner), Hadley Robinson (Moxie), Joey Brooks (Molly’s Game), Brennan Cook (Encounter), Gideon Glick (Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), Fred Hechinger (The White Lotus), Matt Helm (Tragedy of Macbeth), Steven Maier (The Plot Against America), Charlie Tahan (Ozark) and Robert Duvall (The Judge) also star.

“The film, written and directed by Cooper, is based on Louis Bayard’s 2006 novel of the same name—a Gothic thriller that he’s been looking to make for more than a decade. It centers on a young cadet the world would come to know as Edgar Allan Poe (Melling) and a series of murders that took place at the United States Military Academy, West Point, in 1830.”

“West Point, 1830. In the early hours of a gray winter morning, a cadet is found dead. But after the body arrives at the morgue, tragedy becomes savagery when it’s discovered that the young man’s heart has been skillfully removed. Fearing irreparable damage to the fledgling military academy, its leaders turn to a local detective, Augustus Landor (Christian Bale), to solve the murder. Stymied by the cadets’ code of silence, Landor enlists the help of one of their own to pursue the case, an eccentric cadet with a disdain for the rigors of the military and a penchant for poetry—a young man named Edgar Allan Poe (Harry Melling).”

And finally, the feature directorial debut of Paul OwensLandlocked is a creative new horror movie that incorporates actual footage in the form of childhood home movies.

It’s available on VOD, Digital and in select theaters now from Dark Sky Films.

Landlocked‘s use of a family’s original home videos to create a fictional horror story results in unconventional found footage that combines documentary and narrative filmmaking.

In Landlocked, “Summoned to his soon-to-be demolished childhood home, Mason discovers an old VHS camera that can see into the past, driving him to record as many memories as possible before the doomed house is destroyed. Utilizing the director’s own home movies, filming in the actual locations where he spent his youth and casting real-life family members to play fictionalized versions of themselves, Landlocked combines narrative and documentary with horror and sci-fi to create a movie unlike any other…”

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