The horror genre is still regarded by many as the bastard stepchild of film. A lot of people continue to call horror movies B-level “trash” and “garbage”, but ironically love them when they make lots and lots of money at the box office. This is pretty hypocritical because they refuse to acknowledge the importance of the genre, sweeping it under the rug.
Horror movies don’t sweep things under the rug; they expose them. They dare to show how much humanity has completely turned to shit. They tell stories of ghosts, slashers, creepy children, mad scientists, haunted houses, abuse, bullies, machines gone wrong, and many, many more.
When it comes to depicting the history of this often and unfairly maligned genre, there have been so many books that illustrate its long and complicated lineage, but author Brad Weismann adds his own knowledge of it with his book Horror Unmasked: A History of Terror from Nosferatu to Nope.
With over 100+ images and through 230 pages of material, Weismann delves deep into why the genre actually is the most popular in all of film. There are great discussions of monster and B-movies; the deconstructions of the truly weird censorship system; international and world horror; zombies; horror comedies; horror anthologies; serial killers; horror in the social media age; and more.
Horror lovers should definitely get a lot out of it. It is pretty well-researched and detailed. If you’re a diehard horror fan, then this book is a solid read. It should give you a good scary fix before Halloween.