No. 20: Discovering Horror on Film (02:47)
A panel revisits the 20 greatest horror movies of all time. The countdown starts with the 1932 classic, “The Mummy,” a vehicle for rising star Boris Karloff. Horror saved Universal Studios from bankruptcy, and director Karl Freund greatly influenced the genre.
No. 19: Discovering Horror on Film (02:24)
The 1961 adaptation of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Pit and the Pendulum” stars Vincent Price. The film was shot in just 15 days for only $1 million. Director Roger Corman filled his horror films with a sense of “camp wonder.”
No. 18: Discovering Horror on Film (02:59)
Sunday Times critic Stephen Armstrong considers 1963’s “The Haunting” to be the scariest ghost story ever filmed. Viewers are frightened not by the action onscreen, but by things they cannot see but imagine.
No. 17: Discovering Horror on Film (02:10)
Hideo Nakata’s “The Ring,” aka “Ringu,” kicked off a new wave of Japanese horror movies in 1998, and it introduced a new type of ghost to non-Japanese audiences. Film critic Neil Norman calls it one of the scariest films ever made.
No. 16: Discovering Horror on Film (03:19)
The Robin Hardy-directed “The Wicker Man” was written by Anthony Shaffer and released in 1973. The film examines the relationship between Christianity and paganism. Virginal characters are punished in lieu of the promiscuous ones that die in many horror films.
No. 15: Discovering Horror on Film (03:35)
Wes Craven’s “Scream” revived the horror genre in 1996. The film is elevated by Kevin Williamson’s clever script, which turns the slasher genre on its head with self-awareness, humor, and plenty of scares.
No. 14: Discovering Horror on Film (02:54)
Quentin Tarantino’s script for “From Dusk Till Dawn” switches from crime thriller to ultraviolent horror flick midway through. Salma Hayek’s character, Santanico Pandemonium, is the embodiment of the idea that sex kills in horror films.
No. 13: Discovering Horror on Film (02:48)
Roman Polanski’s “Repulsion” is an astonishing study of psychic disturbance and a character’s ability to haunt herself. Catherine Deneuve plays a woman who descends into madness because she cannot bear the male gaze.
No. 12: Discovering Horror on Film (03:10)
MGM released Tod Browning’s “Freaks” in 1932 in response to Universal Studios’ hit horror films. Director Tod Browning was ahead of his time with a film that is still difficult to watch decades later.
No. 11: Discovering Horror on Film (03:42)
Don Siegel directed the 1956 version of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers,” the story of a town whose residents are being replaced by clones. Some say it reflects America’s fear of communism during the Red Scare, but author Bonnie Greer believes it is satire about television.
No. 10: Discovering Horror on Film (03:43)
John Carpenter’s “Halloween” set up the next decade of slasher flicks and is among the most influential horror movies of all time. Jamie Lee Curtis stars as a babysitter who must escape Michael Meyers, a deranged killer.
No. 9: Discovering Horror on Film (03:29)
The 1976 adaptation of Stephen King’s first novel, “Carrie,” was inspired by the author’s experiences as a high school teacher. Brian De Palma directed this story of an outsider who learns she has psychic powers. Actress Piper Laurie initially thought was a comedy.
No. 8: Discovering Horror on Film (03:34)
Director George Romero established the zombie genre with “Night of the Living Dead,” though the word zombie is never used. Romero was a pioneer of independent film, and the choice to make a black actor the lead was radical in 1968.
No. 7: Discovering Horror on Film (03:09)
Polanski adapted Ira Levin’s bestseller for “Rosemary’s Baby,” which follows the torment of an expecting mother played by Mia Farrow. The film explores themes of isolation, fear, and motherhood, and it features one of the most radical horror endings of all time.
No. 6: Discovering Horror on Film (03:24)
“Nosferatu” was based on Bram Stoker’s classic novel, “Dracula,” but director FW Murnau did not own the rights. Max Schreck stars in this masterpiece of German expressionism, which was all shot on location.
No. 5: Discovering Horror on Film (03:20)
Richard Donner directed “The Omen,” which film critic Neil Norman says introduced the idea of “the sophisticated Antichrist.” It features a highly influential film score and captivating performances from Gregory Peck, Anthony Harvey, and other cast members.
No. 4: Discovering Horror on Film (03:19)
Linda Blair plays a girl who is possessed by a demon in William Friedkin’s “The Exorcist,” and Max von Sydow is Father Merrin, the priest who tries to save her. The film benefitted from Dolby Stereo and advances in special effects.
No. 3: Discovering Horror on Film (04:45)
“The Shining” is Stanley Kubrik’s adaptation of Stephen King’s bestselling novel, and the author has said he does not like it. Jack Nicholson plays a writer who goes mad and terrorizes his family while staying in a haunted hotel.
No. 2: Discovering Horror on Film (03:38)
“Psycho” is the film that most defines legendary director Alfred Hitchcock. The film represented a sea change in the horror genre, with Janet Leigh starring in the most talked about shower seen in cinematic history.
No. 1: Discovering Horror on Film (05:06)
James Whale adapted Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” for one of the most formative pieces of horror cinema. Boris Karloff’s costume defined how viewers have imagined Frankenstein’s monster ever since. The story examines what happens when man plays God.
Credits: Discovering Horror on Film (00:40)
Credits: Discovering Horror on Film
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