• Le Manoir du Diable (The House of the Devil) is a three
minute silent French film directed by Georges Melies. It is
the first horror film, as it received the first horror movie
premieres in Paris 1896 and was also the first vampire film.
• The film includes pantomime elements that is intended to
be quite amusing towards audience instead of frightening
them. Although because of the horrific disappearances,
ghosts and demon it is considered to be a horror film.
• The film includes several things such as: a bat turning into
a man and vampires. Whereas in horror films today they
tend to focus on one plot and mythical character.
• Dracula is a vampire-horror film that was directed by
Tod Browning and was released in 1931; the film was
produced by universal and it was the first horror
movie with sound. As the film has sound it meant it
was more effective for viewers to watch as it created a
very edgy atmosphere around them and made the
image on the screen look more powerful.
• The film is based on the novel Dracula by Bram
• Technology advances in 1950’s as movies became 3D such as
‘House of Wax’ and ‘The creature from the Black Lagoon.’
• House of Wax is a 1953 American horror film. It is a remake of
Warners' Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933), it was directed
by André de Toth. It was the first colour 3D horror film from a
major American studio and premiered two days after the Man
in the Dark, which was the first major-studio black-and-white
3-D feature distributed by Columbia Pictures.
• It must have shocked the audience completely, as when they
went to watch the film in cinemas the scenes would make them
even more frightened.
• Psycho is a 1960 American suspense/horror film directed
by Alfred Hitchcock.
• This film is listed as one of the best films of all times.
After this film was released it changed horror as it allowed
people to see that not only are horror films about monsters
or supernatural genre but they can also have a human as a
serial killer and this lead to Hitchcock inspiring the serial
• Halloween is a 1978 American independent Slasher-horror film
which was directed by John Carpenter it started off the Slasher
genre which became one of the biggest sub-genres of the 80s.
• As Slasher horror became a popular sub-genre it lead to films
like :Friday 13th which is an American slasher film directed
by Sean S. Cunningham. A nightmare of Elm street (1984)
directed by Wes Craven. Both of these directed were inspired
by Carpenters work in ‘Halloween.’
• By 1990s horror films included more cliff-hangers and left audience
thinking more about the story whilst watching. There were several
changes in horror films as horror had worn itself out and it was re-
invented with post-modern, ironic and intertextual films like
‘Scream’ an American Slasher film (1996-1997) directed by Wes
Craven Scream was inspired by Williamson's passion for horror
films. In 1997 Craven released ‘Scream 2’
• In particular Halloween (1978) and ‘I know what you did last
summer’ (1997 is an American Slasher film by Lois Duncan). These
films and ‘Scream’ have a lot in common, for instance they are both
about a group of teenage friends trying to enjoys themselves; this
shows that more modern horror films are associated with teen horror.
• The Blair Witch Project is a 1999 American horror film written
and directed by Eduardo Sánchez and Daniel Myrick. The film
was produced by the Haxan Films production company.
• Though fictional, it is presented as "found footage", after the
film was released it lead to other horror films including ‘found
footage such as ‘Paranormal Activity’ (2007) which is a
American supernatural horror film written and directed
by Oren Peli.
• Paranormal activity is about a young couple, who are haunted
by a mystic existence in their home. It is shown in the style of
"found footage", from cameras that are set up by the pair to try
identify what is haunting them.
• Now horror films have advanced so much in terms of colours, sound,
editing and narrative. Therefore directors can make their films look more
effective and original such as Paranormal Activity it makes viewers feel
like the film is more realistic as the film is in a document style.
• In terms of editing there are several more editing websites which help
images on screen look more powerful to audience. Sound has allowed
the motion on the screen look more scary whether it is diegetic or non-
diegetic sound it would still have an effect on the audience watching.
• As today directors are more clear about sub-genres they can easily
decide which type of sub-genre is liked most by audience whereas,
before horror films were still unsure about some horror sub-genres.
• In 2000 audience are able to identify that ‘Zombie horror’ genre is still
alive with films like: 28 days later (2002), Shaun of the Dead (2004)
which is a British zombie comedy film directed by Edgar Wright and
Warm Bodies (2013) an American paranormal romantic zombie comedy;
that was directed and written by Jonathan Levine.