Horror movie releases A-Z by decade...
The 1960s was a time of transition for the Horror genre. The decade kicked off with Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho; a film that not only challenged the conventions of the genre, but challenged conventional audience expectations of plot and character. More and more, film makers became as interested in exploring the terror within the mind, as much as the terror from creatures from beyond the grave. Roman Polanski was the best exponent of this new approach. The 1965 film Repulsion was the start, but Rosemary's Baby, released in 1968, typified the emerging sub-genre of psychological horror and it proved to be box office gold!
1960 - 1969 highlights include:
The 1970s is the decade that lifted the Horror movie genre into the emerging social experience known as Pop Culture, offering movies whose characters became largely than the films themselves. The emergence of Horror into the mainstream also helped to attract film makers who saw the genre as an opportunity to tell unique, confronting stories. Movies like The Wicker Man, Don't Look Now and The Exorcist all had something to say about humanity's faith in religion, while movie makers like Wes Craven and David Cronenberg emerged with a new kind of visceral Horror that leveraged the raw power of the genre. Then, there's Halloween; the benchmark 'Killer in the Mask' movie!
1970 - 1979 highlights include:
The 1980s was an era known for the proliferation of Slasher films within the Horror genre. John Carpenter created the blueprint with Halloween and Michael Myers; more supernatural force than serial killer. The Friday the 13th franchise, which kicked off in 1980, had Jason Vorhees, while the Nightmare on Elm Street series had Freddy Krueger. Other enduring Horror characters born in the 1980s included Bruce Campbell's Ash battling Sam Raimi's Evil Dead andthe S&M-inspired Cenobite Pinhead from Hellraiser, based on Cliver Barker's Books of Blood.
1980 - 1989 highlights include:
The 1990s saw a resurgence of interest from mainstream studios keen to tap into the combination of Horror and Police Procedural stories that had become the subject of pop culture fascination through books, both fact & fiction, that legitimized serial killers as a very real threat to society. Genre veteran Wes Craven scored a box office hit with Scream, while The Blair Witch Project demonstrated that the simplest of stories has the ability to scare if done the right way. Looming in the background of Western Horror was the emergence of Japanese Horror, with movies like Ring (Ringu) and Audition (Odishon).
1990 - 1999 highlights include:
The 2000s is notable for the divergence that occurred within the Horror genre. On one side, the movies that explored the effects of horror upon humans and, on the other side, the "franchise" films that extended audience exploitation with an over-reliance upon jump scares! For the majority of the decade, Horror movie makers concentrated on making their movies as realistic as possible with levels of gratuity never-before -seen. The likes of Eli Roth immediately come to mind. The 2000s also saw the emergence of the Zombie craze that has since become its own genre within pop culture.
2000 - 2009 highlights include:
The divergence of the 2000s has continued into the second decade of the 21st Century. High quality releases have come largely from the independent film making community, while the major studios have turned to smaller production companies to co-produce film, taking more interest in the distribution process. This has seen the emergence of Jason Blum as the key player in the American Horror movie production process. Blum's micro-budget production is appealing because it limits studio exposure, but when a film performs at the box office, the financial returns to all parties involved are significant.