Posted on Thursday, January 29th, 2015 by Peter Sciretta
Filmmaker IQ has published another one of their long-form video essays. This 30-minute Film School lesson teaches you the history of horror movies “from it’s roots deep in Gothic literature, through B-movie status and director’s proving grounds to ultimate respectability as an important filmmaking genre.”
The history of horror is a vast and perhaps foolhardy thing to tackle. No matter how hard you try, there are films and horror subgenres that will slide through the cracks.. But horror is somewhat unique among the film genres in that there is a recognizable pattern that happens again and again. A film will come along and terrify an audience capturing their imaginations and making bank- Filmmakers flock to the cash cow like vampires to blood which leads to sequels and imitators – sometimes better than the original. But eventually the sequels run out of steam and the subgenre created by the original smash hit fades into memory lurking in the corners of history waiting to be rediscovered and reborn- this process is commonly referred to as cycles. Although other genres behave similarly, the unique appeal of horror from its low budget requirements to broad multinational appeal, make horror especially susceptible to these boom and fade cycles. But as we look at how the genre changes over time, we must not think of the history of horror as being a rigid one way street. New films borrow from old films all the time, a constant remix of subgenres and new techniques to make something for the contemporary culture.
Watch the history of horror movies video essay now embedded after the jump.
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