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Film

Paul Leni's Silent Film 'The Man Who Laughs' Is Serious Cinema

There's so much tragedy present, so many skullduggeries afoot, and so many cruel and vindictive characters in attendance that a sad and heartbreaking ending seems to be an obvious given in Paul Leni's silent film, The Man Who Laughs.

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Film

'The Rental' Is an Airbnb Horror of Hipsters in Peril

In Dave Franco and Joe Swanberg's hipster horror flick The Rental, the looming threat surrounding a vacationing foursome feels less crucial than the lies they tell each other.

Film

The "Luxurious Loneliness" of Anime Film 'Perfect Blue'

In Satoshi Kon's 1997 masterpiece, Perfect Blue, former J-Pop idol Mima Kirigoe's crisis of identity echoes our current 'epidemic' of loneliness -- upsetting the boundary between private and public agency, the desire to hide and the compulsion to be seen.

Film

The Cyclops and the Sunken Place: Narrative Control in 'Watchmen' and 'Get Out'

Hollywood is increasing Black representation but Damon Lindelof and Jordan Peele challenge audiences to question the authenticity of this system.

Film

The Bizarre 'Deerskin' Makes Black Comedy Out of a Familiar Masculine Crisis

Led by a misanthropic yet oddly charming performance from Jean Dujardin, Quentin Dupieux's take on the midlife crisis, Deerskin, gains power from the absurd and the enigmatic.

Film

Why 'Dead Silence' Is the Forgotten Gem of James Wan's Horror Oeuvre

James Wan's supernatural ventriloquism film, Dead Silence, was buried alive in the catacombs of cinema's history by a mountain of awful reviews upon its release. But its take on the horrors of misogyny may compel you to watch it now.

Love in the Time of Coronavirus

Our Monsters, Ourselves

Not just for devotees or scholars, The Monster Theory Reader provides a framework for understanding humans at least as much as monsters.

Film

'70s Horror Film Let's Scare Jessica to Death Fools Everyone

Writer-Director John Hancock and co-writer Lee Kalcheim take the gothic heroine from hundreds of penny dreadfuls and allow her to have her agency in the most unusual horror film, Let's Scare Jessica to Death.

Film

8 Low-Budget Films That Delivered Big

Money isn't everything, although in filmmaking it counts for a lot. These eight films defied their minuscule budgets.

Film

John Badham's 'Dracula', the Rock Star

On John Badham's Dracula. Because the director of Saturday Night Fever is the first person you would think of to direct Dracula, right?

Film

'Dead of Night' Haunts Above and Beyond Its Imitators

Film anthology Dead of Night's influence went far beyond what its creators must have imagined.

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'The Night Stalker' Crept Through the 1970s Constraints of Made for TV Film

In the '70s there was something sinister sneaking into suburban homes between the sitcom and the 11 o'clock news where the real horrors played out. The made for TV horror film The Night Stalker would be among the best.

Film

'When a Stranger Calls Back' Betters Its Spooky Predecessor

Although not as well known as John Carpenter or Brian DePalma, Fred Walton brilliantly complicates that old mystery -- is the killer in the house? -- with 1993's When a Stranger Calls Back.

Film

'The Lighthouse' Finds Lynchian Beauty in the Terror of Pitiless Nature

In Robert Eggers' brutal but lyrical 19th century horror show, The Lighthouse, there is a lot of David Lynch in the looming soundtrack and the steam-powered, proto-industrial feel in the scenes of tending the lighthouse machinery.

Film

'Psycho': The Mother of All Horrors

Psycho stands out not only for being one of Alfred Hitchcock's greatest films, it is also one of his most influential. It has been a template and source material for an almost endless succession of later horror films, making it appropriate to identify it as the mother of all horror films.

Francesc Quilis
Film

Get Out of the Shower!: The Shower Scene and Hitchcock's Narrative Style in 'Psycho'

In Psycho, Alfred Hitchcock subverts the narrative expectations laid out in the early parts, producing something very different from the suspense film that we anticipate.

Despina Kakoudaki
Film

Gothic Mystery 'Dominique' Indulges in Mood

Michael Anderson's Dominique hones in on an atmosphere richly dripping with nouveau gothic dread.

Film

Who Can Take Tomorrow, Dip It in a Scream? The 'Candyman' Can...

Bernard Rose's Candyman offers a moody "elegance", if you will, that's sorely lacking in other horror films of the era.

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The Storytelling Technique in Tourneur's Horror Film, 'The Leopard Man', Was Way Ahead of Its Time

Jacques Tourneur's Cat People and I Walked with a Zombie are considered classics today. But The Leopard Man, has always been considered something of a misstep, until now.

Film

FrightFest 2019: Emma Tammi's 'The Wind'

The Wind (2018) is a quietly impressive film, an example of genre cinema that shows thoughtfulness and an interest in ideas.

Film

'Quatermass and the Pit' Peers into the Dark Nature of Human Evolution

Nigel Kneale's book and screenplay, which Hammer Films made into Quatermass and the Pit, raises many provocative questions regarding the nature of human evolution and the conception of the devil itself.

Film

Who Dares to Enter 'The House That Dripped Blood' and the 'Asylum'?

Amicus Productions provide a smorgasbord of macabre thrills and atmospheric chills with two superior films from their quaint line of quirky portmanteau horror features, The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum.

Television

The Pulpy Origins of Netflix's 'Typewriter'

Less polished than Netflix's usual fare, Sujoy Ghosh's new haunted house series, Typewriter, borrows from India's rich tradition of genre fiction.

Film

Fear the Capitalists, Not the Pagan Witch: William McGregor on His Film, 'Gwen'

Director William McGregor reflects on how his fantastical period film, Gwen, began as a reaction to mainstream television, and how the capitalist antagonist will allow the film to continue to resonate with audiences in the future.

Film

Insular Musician; Collaborative Filmmaker: Director A.T. White on 'Starfish'

Director A.T. White reflects on his deliberately obtuse debut feature, Starfish, and letting go of a character, a version of himself to the film's actress, Virginia Gardner.

Reviews

The Brilliant 'Midsommar' Is a Haunting Reflection on Love's Perversity

Director Ari Aster's uncompromising artistic vision in Midsommar creates a singular viewing experience of horror, beauty, and bafflement.

Film

'The Dead Don't Die' Confronts Climate Change with Deadpan Whimsicality

With The Dead Don't Die, Jim Jarmusch deliberately deprives his latest film of the propulsive terrors innate to most zombie films, instead using the genre to matter-of-factly rhapsodize about consumer culture and the inevitability of the apocalypse.

Books

It All Goes Sideways in Ezra Claytan Daniels and Ben Passmore's 'BTTM FDRS'

Graphic fiction BTTM FDRS drags up our culture's biggest, ugliest globs of unconscious sewage and spreads it across a white page for us to see and acknowledge.

Film

Faster than Fassbinder! An Interview with Filmmaker Michael Fredianelli

The prolific independent filmmaker Michael Fredianelli doesn't let the microbudget scale of his productions limit his imagination -- or his creations.

Television

The Catharsis of the Void in Anime Horror, 'Vampire Princess Miyu'

Within the 26 hard-to-find episodes of Vampire Princess Miyu, there are murders, suicide, and even murder-suicides. There really is something for everyone. So why did it fail?

Television

The 'Twilight Zone' Reboot Is an Uneven Anthology of Schlocky Horror

The first five episodes of The Twilight Zone (2019-) developed by Jordan Peele, Simon Kinberg and Marco Ramirez, vary wildly in quality, but even the best of the bunch lack nuance and bite.

Comics

It's Rare to Find Horror Executed So Perfectly in Graphic Fiction As It Is in 'Beautiful Darkness'

If you're used to the blood splatter of slasher films or the evil monsters of supernatural thrillers, be warned: Beautiful Darkness covers an abyss of horrors far deeper.

Film

Claire Denis Goes for Broke with Hallucinatory Space Thriller, 'High Life'

High Life is more a series of tensions and breaking points than it is a traditionally satisfying space narrative, but Denis's allegiance to directors like Tarkovsky and Kubrick offers an intriguing view of humanity at the gates of the final frontier.

Film

'Pet Sematary' Is a Welcome Resurrection

Tense, unflinching, and completely self-aware, Pet Sematary veers away from its source material in satisfying ways, yet remains true to Stephen King's uncompromising vision.

Film

Jordan Peele's 'Us', Postmodernism, and Free-Floating Racism

Before terrifying us, Peele overwhelms with cultural signifiers untethered from their referents in his latest, Us.

Film

Jordan Peele’s 'Us' Is a Conceptually Dense Study in Uncanny Horror

The budding auteur's follow up to Get Out, Us, is murkier than its predecessor but features a treasure trove of potent references to keep its ambitious premise afloat.

Film

Jordan Peele's 'Us' Is as Thrilling as It Is Thought-provoking

While not as streamlined as Get Out, Jordan Peele continues to provoke thought through the horror movie lens with Us.


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