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Shudder


Iris hiding

While there’s always been a certain amount of horror conjured-up by the idea of a virus-driven pandemic, the last few years have brought the prospect into stark relief. Not that COVID-19 turns its victims into mindless zombies wild with bloodlust or a hunger for brains, but it’s still very scary. Making films based on this …

Mother and son

Creepy old houses in the middle of nowhere are perfect settings for horror cinema. Close neighbours are few and far between, which is often for the best considering how odd they usually are. There are no passers-by to raise the alarm or hear, say, a chainsaw doing its work. Mobile phone signal is sporadic, at …

Marie and George

Some of the greatest horror films conjure up an atmosphere of the uncanny. Set in insular communities where there’s something not quite right, but you just can’t put your finger on it. Whether it’s the pagan old ways of The Wicker Man or the Lovecraftian nightmare of In The Mouth of Madness, the off-kilter environment …

a young girl abandoned

At some stage, which is probably the fault of Bram Stroker and Lord Byron in equal measure, vampires became sexy. Many cultures, in almost every part of the globe, have legends or folktales of blood-sucking creatures. These monsters certainly weren’t tall handsome Counts with hypnotic eyes. The Gothic period helped fuel a narrative of immortality …

Mary and Eleanor

When the Mayflower landed in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620, it would set the religious tone in New England for centuries to come. The Pilgrim Fathers brought their brand of puritanism to the New World and started a movement which would eventually sweep through the region. Building the foundations for the socio-political outlook of colonial life …

Eva in a wheelchair

Physical disabilities have been used in genre cinema dating back to the silent era, but usually not in a good way. Traditionally, the ‘bad guy’ or ‘monster’ had some form of seen or unseen disability. Thankfully, we’ve come a long way (unless it’s a Bond film) but this stereotype often still persists. Horror filmmakers have …

the group squabbling

With the publication of his novel Dracula, Bram Stoker brought the concept of vampirism to the masses. While entities with vampiric tendencies have existed in folklore dating back to ancient civilisations, the vampire as it’s known today can be traced to south-eastern Europe during the 18th century. The tropes and lore of this supernatural being …

Noi and Mink

While a good yarn is difficult to beat, the truth is often stranger than fiction. Sometimes, considerably scarier as well. There’s something inherently unsettling when you’re watching a creepy true story. We naturally empathise with the victim, imagine ourselves in their shoes. The line can blur between fact and fiction. Occasionally there’s even deceit at …

Once upon a time, anthology horrors were fairly common. During the 1960s and 1970s, the British production company Amicus made a number of much-loved portmanteau films. The likes of Tales from the Crypt, Torture Garden and From Beyond the Grave proved to be very popular. While the Creepshow collections in the 1980s caught the imagination …

fear awakes

Throughout history, evil and power-hungry men have created fictional monsters in order to control people. Religion is the most obvious example, which has been used for thousands of years as a means of social control. Every society is full of myths and legends. Cautionary tales of fantastical creatures and supernatural beings to keep citizens on …