10 best vampire and zombie movies to devour this Thanksgiving

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The Thanksgiving holiday is almost here, giving people a chance to relax and unwind with family and friends. While there are many ways to celebrate, settling for a good movie after a hearty meal is a great end to the day.


There aren’t many movies that actually focus on the Thanksgiving holiday, which forces viewers to improvise with other movies that fit the day’s themes. For horror lovers, some great movies would be those that focus on hungry creatures. These vampire and zombie films that viewers can devour this November.

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30 Days of Night (2007)

Rent or buy on Amazon Video

A band of vampires have been prowling the city for 30 Days of Night

30 days of night subverts common vampire tropes, especially when it comes to modern depictions of creatures. While most vampire movies portray them as beautiful, alluring creatures, this movie portrays them as truly deadly, ravenous monsters of the night.

For those who enjoy vampires who are portrayed as monsters rather than seductive undead, this is a great option for movie night. This film gives new meaning to monsters that love to devour as a group of ancient vampires are unleashed on an entire town during a dark month in Alaska.

Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Stream on Hulu

Group of zombies running at something off-screen in Dawn of the Dead

Although it’s a remake of a classic zombie movie, dawn of the dead actually subverts zombie tropes in many ways. While zombies are often portrayed as slow and stupid, these undead creatures run after people and follow the living in a desperate pursuit.

This film is a great thriller for a group that likes to come together for some good twists and shocking twists. In terms of zombies, this movie delivers on many of the great aspects that make those films so entertaining while adding a few unique qualities to keep it timeless.

Afflicted (2013)

Stream on Showtime

Cover of the movie Afflicted.

In this film, two friends go on a trip to Barcelona when one of them is attacked by a mysterious woman who leaves him with a strange illness. As the story unfolds, he learns that he has contracted some kind of vampire virus that makes him crave blood.

It’s the type of film to reunite with friends and family who love a touch of traditional tropes. This film is both something unique in the traditions of found footage and vampire stories. For a vacation that focuses so much on food, this movie is definitely something that revolves around hunger and the desire for food.

28 Days Later (2003)

Rent or buy on Amazon Video

Cillian Murphy in 28 Days Later

This British zombie film follows many of the zombie tropes that fans love to see in these storylines. However, it has a unique beginning with the main character waking up, not knowing what happened to the world, and an optimistic ending.

It’s the perfect movie for those who like fast-paced stories that keep you waiting for the next twist. Hunger isn’t just a main theme because it’s a zombie movie, but it’s also a complex part of the somewhat uplifting conclusion.

Stake Land (2010)

Stream on Peacock

A vampire from the movie Stake Land.

This vampire movie is another great option for viewers who love the most monstrous vampires. In this story, a boy and an expert vampire hunter seek sanctuary, along with a few companions, in a world overrun by the bloodthirsty undead.

If a bunch of moviegoers can’t decide whether a vampire or zombie movie is the best option for a Thanksgiving horror movie marathon, this movie is a great middle ground. It has the bloodthirsty hunger that comes from vampires with the added suspense of an apocalyptic world often seen in zombie tropes.

Cargo (2018)

Stream on Netflix

It’s a horrifying film that also has extremely touching undertones. In the wake of a zombie outbreak in Australia, a father must find someone willing and able to protect his baby girl before it’s too late for him.

Even for horror lovers, Thanksgiving is a great time to find a scary movie that also has touching moments. If viewers are looking for action associated with zombie movies, but also something heartwarming, this is the perfect watch.

Queen of the Damned (2002)

Rent or buy on Amazon Video

queen of the damned

queen of the damned is a great option for those looking for a vampire film that has all of the seductive, brooding, and deadly aspects that are more common in more modern vampire portrayals. In this movie, a vampire-turned-rock-star becomes involved in a plot to stop the Queen of the Damned.

It’s a great holiday watch for those who love vampire movies but are more into the drama and mystery than the terror of these immortal monsters. There’s plenty of drama and suspense to devour in this high-intensity vampire flick.

World War Z (2013)

Stream to Prime Video

Watching a zombie from Brad Pitt's shoulder perspective

Many fans consider World War Z one of the best zombie movies. In this apocalyptic film, a man races to help the government find a cure for the zombie disease plaguing the world so he can protect his family.

It’s perfect for a group that loves zombie movies with a unique twist. While some of these films follow the zombie tropes, it has a lot more action and has smarter, faster undead. This Thanksgiving, you can devour a story that puts a unique and intricate spin on a zombie virus plot.

From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)

Stream on HBO Max

Danny Trejo as a vampire in From Dusk Till Dawn

There is a lot of similar vampire movies like From dusk till dawn, but that doesn’t make this film any less compelling. In this classic vampire movie, a couple of criminals and their captors unknowingly enter a bar full of hungry vampires looking for blood.

It’s the perfect vampire movie for viewers who love a lot of action. Although these vampires are handsome and seductive at first, the film takes a dark turn, forcing the living to fight the bloodthirsty dead in close quarters.

Black Friday (2021)

Stream on Starz

black friday

This black comedy is a new take on zombie movies. When a group of retail workers find themselves trapped in their store as their customers transform into voracious, deformed monsters, they must fight to survive the night.

There aren’t many movies that aim for the Thanksgiving holiday, but this is the perfect horror movie to watch for those who want something more holiday-focused. There’s plenty of action and suspense, but also plenty of laughs that leave viewers satisfied with the humor and fear of the storyline.

Next: 10 Goriest Zombie Movies of All Time

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