The Spawn of a New Season: Babies of Horror

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For the majority of the United States, spring has officially sprung. The weather is getting warmer, flowers are blooming, and the promise of new life is all around us. Death and darkness are in our seasonal rear view mirror. But one of the best things about being a horror fans, is that you have something to watch throughout the cycle of the year. We also often keep our horror viewings relatively seasonal. So what is there for a horror fanatic to watch during this time of oppressive cheerfulness?

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The Return of the Creature Feature

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With the breakout success of Stranger Things and the plethora of 1980’s inspired genre fare popping up recently, it seems as though we have been indulging in a certain level of what I like to call "nostalgia porn". These 80’s throwbacks have saturated the genre over the past several years and don’t seem to be stopping any time soon. But what is it about this era of horror that we all find so appealing, even to those of us that were not even alive yet? Horror films in the 80’s benefitted from a very special window of freedom.

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The Grand Guignol: Theatre of Horror

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Long before the days of film festivals and conventions, even before the days of celluloid, the primary medium of entertainment was theater. Now I’m not talking about the high class productions found in London’s West End or the black tie affair of the opera; I’m talking about something much more objectionable. If you had visited Paris at the tail end of the 19th century, deep in it’s notorious Monmarte district, and you had walked along it’s cobblestone streets, past it’s illicit sex trade operations, you would have come upon an old gothic looking chapel.

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The Power of Sound in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

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The first time I ever heard about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, my mother was talking about how it was the most brutal, gory movie she had ever seen. By the time I got around to actually seeing the film, it was much to my surprise, although brutal as it was, it had little to no blood. Even the majority of the violence is implied. So what was it that had my Mom so convinced that she had seen a bloodbath? The biggest contributing factor was the power of sound design. As a horror fan, I have come to appreciate the importance and potential of sound design in a very unique way.

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Quintessential Cronenberg: Happy Birthday to the Master of Body Horror

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Often considered to be the master of “body horror”, David Cronenberg has spent the last four decades constructing a signature style that is often copied but rarely matched. His visceral visual style and directing talent make for a great filmmaker but Cronenberg’s ability to creatively and critically observe humanity through his films make him as close to a contemporary philosopher as filmmakers really get. Exploration seems to be the goal of his films.

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