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It’s Groundhog Day, a strange little holiday overshadowed by a popular Bill Murray comedy that sees his selfish character become a better person thanks to a bizarre time loop. It’s a fascinating concept that can turn downright sinister within the realm of horror.

So we’re celebrating Groundhog Day by revisiting ten horror and sci-fi time loop movies that bring suspense, terror, and sometimes laughs through messing around with time…


From director Vincenzo Natali (CubeSplice), Haunter brings a refreshing twist to a haunted house thriller through a time loop. Abigail Breslin stars as Lisa, a teen who slowly comes to realize that she’s a ghost stuck reliving the day she was murdered in 1985 along with her family, on a perpetual loop. Lisa also discovers that she can bend time to communicate with people in other timelines, eventually working with a teen currently living in her home to prevent the same killer from murdering again and hopefully breaking the cycle. Look for the perpetually magnetic Stephen McHattie as Pale Man, a mysterious ghost that tries to warn Lisa away from tampering with time too much.


Written by Brea Grant and directed by Natasha Kermani, Lucky introduces May (Grant), an author in a sophomore slump. She’s exhausted from endless book signings and struggling to get her next book deal approved. The tension with her emotionally distant husband Ted (Dhruv Uday Singh) is only the beginning of her troubled home life; May finds herself trapped in a time loop in which she’s stalked every night by a masked man determined to kill her. Grant and Kermani are ambitious in their approach to horror-as-metaphor and offer a personal, layered dissection of May’s life. It builds to a finale that subverts slasher and home invasion tropes.

The House at the End of Time

Dulce is happily married and the mother of two sons, but her perfect life is interrupted by spooky paranormal occurrences in their home. One night her family is attacked by an unseen foe inside the house, leaving her husband dead and her son Leopoldo missing. Dulce is arrested and convicted once her fingerprints are discovered on the murder weapon. Cut to 30 years later; she’s released from prison under the requirement that the rest of her sentence be carried out via house arrest- the same home where the tragedy occurred. The paranormal activity begins anew, only this time the older Dulce learns it’s not ghosts but time travel that’s behind it all. The House at the End of Time takes the familiar trappings of a haunted house tale and injects a heartbreaking story of familial love and tragedy by way of time travel.


A dinner party goes awry when a comet passes overhead, causing strange occurrences and anomalies. Or rather, the dinner party guests find themselves stuck in a sort of temporal nightmare. The guests discover parallel realities overlapping with their own, causing an unsettling mix of quantum physics and interpersonal dynamics. Coherence is a creepy Twilight Zone-style tale of doppelgangers via claustrophobic paranoia on a micro-budget.

The Endless

Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead star as brothers returning to the cult they fled from years ago when an old videotape resurfaces. It may have been a decade since they left, but they discover the cult members haven’t aged a single day. Camp Arcadia’s cult resides on a strange plot of land filled with various time loop pockets, presenting a unique, meditative story of cosmic horror and coming to terms with the past. For these brothers, Camp Arcadia offers a mind-bending space that allows them to confront both their bizarre upbringing and their current place in the world in all its existential intricacies.

The Final Girls

The Final Girls

Max Cartwright finds herself with another chance for closure after her mother’s untimely death when she and her friends get sucked into retro slasher movie Camp Bloodbath after a freak accident at a repertory screening of the film. She and her friends realize they’ll have to play along with the film’s events as they’re trapped in its 92-minute runtime, running on a continuous loop. Of course, the group will also have to outlast Camp Bloodbath‘s masked killer. This slasher-comedy time loop movie lovingly pokes fun at the subgenre’s tropes and stock characters while giving you all the feels with its exploration of grief.


Writer/director Nacho Vigalondo’s first feature film is a twisty sci-fi horror story that sees its lead, Hector, stuck in a time loop following an attack by a man covered in bloodied bandages. Those that are a stickler for time travel logic and characters whose decisions compound their misfortune might be frustrated, but Timecrimes is a creative, fast-paced romp in suspense. The more Hector continues his time loop, the deadlier things get. What starts as a slasher evolves into something completely different.


Director Christopher Smith (Black DeathSeverance) delivered one of the most mind-bending horror films in Triangle. Melissa George stars as Jess, a woman desperate for a break from her autistic son who agrees to join a friend for a day on a yacht. A storm leaves them stranded until an ocean liner comes along, only it’s deserted. As the group finds themselves hunted by a masked killer on board, a severe case of Déjà vu sets in for Jess, and no one can effectively predict the turns the story takes from there. There are seriously twisted time loops involved in this one.

Edge of Tomorrow

The Doug Liman-directed adaptation of “All You Need Is Kill” gave an action sci-fi spin on the Groundhog Day concept. In this time loop movie, Tom Cruise stars as a cowardly military PR specialist that gets caught in a loop that resets whenever he dies. Considering the world is in the midst of a raging alien war, he dies frequently. Emily Blunt’s fierce Rita is a character for the ages, and Bill Paxton once again establishes himself as a scene-stealer. It’s a massively scaled Blockbuster-style spectacle with a ton of humor and heart.

Happy Death Day

Tree Gelbman is the typical college mean girl. When she’s murdered on her birthday, she finds herself stuck in a time loop that forces her to relive the same day over and over, resulting in her murder every time. She must solve the mystery behind her murder if she wants to end the cycle, and the wacky experience has the added benefit of causing her to grow as a person. Happy Death Day takes a humorous Groundhog Day approach to the slasher movie, at once proving how well the slasher meshes with other genres as well as introducing an unconventional Final Girl that learns how to become more human the more she dies.

Can you think of any other time loop movies to recommend? Let us know!

This article was originally published on February 2, 2022.

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