What is horror Horror films are a movie genre seeking to elicit a negativeemotional reaction from viewers by playing on the audience’s most primal fears. They often feature scenes that startle the viewer through the means of macabre and the supernatural, thusfrequently overlapping with the fantasy and science fiction genres. Horror also frequently overlap with the thriller genre.
1890s-1920sThe first depictions of supernatural events appear in several ofthe silent shorts created by the film pioneer Georges Méliès inthe late 1890s, the best known being Le Manoir du diable.In the early 20th century horror movies started using monsters inthere movie. These movies are Dr. Jekyll And Mr Hyde(1920), The Phantom Carriage (Sweden, 1920) The Lost World(1925), The Phantom Of The Opera (1925)
1930s-1940sDuring the early period of talking pictures the Americanmovie studio universal pictures began a successful gothichorror film series with films such asDracula(1931),Frankenstein (also in 1931) and The wolfman (1941).By now, some actors were beginning to build entirecareers in such films, most especially Boris Karloff andBela Lugosi. Karloff appeared in three of producer ValLewton’s atmospheric B-pictures for RKO pictures inthe mid-1940s, including the body snatcher(1945), whichalso featured Lugosi. The titles of these films were oftenimposed on Lewton by the studio, but cat people (1942), Iwalked with a zombie (1943) rise above this limitation.
1950s-1960sWith advances in technology, the tone of horror films shifted from the gothic towardscontemporary concerns. Two sub-genres began to emerge: the horror-of -Armageddon film and the horror-of-the-demonic horror.A stream of usually low-budget productions featured humanity overcoming threatsfrom outside: alien invasions and deadly mutations to people, plants, and insects. Inthe case of some horror films from Japan, such as Godzilla (1954) and itssequels, mutation from the effects of nuclear radiationDuring the later 1950s, Great Britain emerged as a producer of horror films. PeepingTom (1960), directed by Michael Powell, concerns a serial killer who combines hisprofession as a photographer with the moments before murdering his victims. TheBritish Hammer company focused on the genre for the first time, enjoying hugeinternational success from films involving classic horror characters which were shownin color for the first time. Often starring Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, anddrawing on Universals precedent, these films include The Curse of Frankenstein(1957), and Dracula (1958), both followed by many sequels, with director TerenceFisher being responsible for many of the best films. Other British companiescontributed to a boom in horror film production in the UK during the 1960s and1970s, including Tigon-British and Amicus, the latter best known for their anthologyfilms like Dr. Terrors House of Horrors (1965).
1970s-1980sEvil children and reincarnation became popular subjects. RobertWises film Audrey Rose (1977) for example, deals with a man whoclaims his daughter is the reincarnation of another dead person.Alice, Sweet Alice (1977), is another Catholic themed horrorslasher about a little girls murder and her sister being the primesuspect. Another popular Satanic horror movie was The Omen(1976), where a man realizes his five year old adopted son is theAntichrist. Invincible to human intervention, Satan became thevillain in many horror films with a postmodern style and adystopian worldview.The ideas of the 1960s began to influence horror films, as the youthinvolved in the counterculture began exploring the medium. WesCravens The Hills Have Eyes (1977) and Tobe Hoopers The TexasChain Saw Massacre (1974) recalled the Vietnam war; GeorgeA. Romero satirised the consumer society in his zombiesequel, Dawn of the Dead (1978); Canadian director DavidCronenberg featured the "mad scientist" movie subgenre byexploring contemporary fears about technology and society, andreinventing "body horror", starting with Shivers (1975).
1990-2000in the first half of the 1990s, the genre continued many of thethemes from the 1980s. Sequels from the Childs Play (1988)and Leprechaun (1993) series enjoyed some commercialsuccess. The slasher films A Nightmare on Elm Street, Fridaythe 13th, and Halloween all saw sequels in the 1990s, most ofwhich met with varied amounts of success at the box office, butall were panned by fans and critics, with the exception of WesCravens New Nightmare (1994) and the hugely successfulSilence of the Lambs (1991).The start of the 2000s saw a quiet period for the genre. The release ofan extended version of The Exorcist in September 2000 was successfuldespite the film having been available on home video for years.Franchise films such as Freddy vs. Jason also made a stand intheaters. Final Destination (2000) marked a successful revival of teen-centered horror and spawned five sequels. The Jeepers Creepersseries was also successful. Films like Wrong Turn, Cabin Fever, Houseof 1000 Corpses, and the previous mentions helped bring the genreback to Restricted ratings in theaters.