These are the top 5 scariest movies according to science

What’s the scariest movie of all time? That answer might be subjective. However, entertainment company Broadband Choices recently decided to use science to find the answer. 

In a recent study funded by the company called "The Science of Scare," published earlier this month and updated every year, researchers found 50 daring participants and subjected them to a torturous 120 hours of nail-biting horror in order to find which horror flicks pushed audiences to the edge. 

In order to achieve this, researchers monitored viewers’ heart rates while watching popular scary movies. They wanted to know which films were the most successful at triggering the audience’s fight or flight mechanisms. 

Each of the 50 films chosen for the study was picked based on critics’ reviews and presented in 5.1 surround sound to replicate the most immersive and blood-curdling experience a horror film can offer. 

Scientists compared spikes in viewers’ heart rates and measured those differences. Each film has a standard average heart rate and a spike measured from various jump scares and other horrifying scenes from these films. 

For some horror fanatics, the results of this years’ Science of Scare study might not come as a surprise, but to others, it might suffice as a warning. 

Directors with more than one film on the Scare List:

James Wan: "The Conjuring," "Insidious," "The Conjuring 2"
Rob Savage: "Host," "DASHCAM"
Scott Derrickson: "Sinister," "Black Phone"
Tobe Hooper: "Texas Chainsaw Massacre," "Poltergeist"

Here are the top 5 scariest films according to science

1. "Sinister"

Resting BPM: 65
Movie BPM: 86
Difference: 32%
Highest BPM strike: 131
Release date: 1 November 2012
Director: Scott Derrickson

2. "Insidious"

Resting BPM: 65
Movie BPM: 86
Difference: 21%
Highest BPM strike: 133
Release date: 12 May 2011 
Director: James Wan

3. "The Conjuring"

Resting BPM: 65
Movie BPM: 85
Difference: 20%
Highest BPM strike: 129
Release date: 18 July 2013 
Director: James Wan

4. "Hereditary"

Resting BPM: 65
Movie BPM: 83
Difference: 18%
Highest BPM strike: 109
Release date: 7 June 2018


5. "Paranormal Activity"

Resting BPM: 65
Movie BPM: 82
Difference: 17%
Highest BPM strike: 127
Release date: 3 December 2009