Classic Horror Films For Halloween

For years now I've scaled back my work each August to work on a passion project--a novel, a niche website . . . you name it. In 2016 that passion project was a re-watching and review of some of the most important horror films in the history of worldwide cinema.

Lisa Barger Reviews Silent And Classic Horror Films
Silent And Classic Films


Now, this isn't a countdown. After all, how can you possibly compare a century-old art film to a modern mega-budget slasher? I don't think you can and I'm not even going to try. In fact, I'm not even going to rank these movies within their own decades.

Instead, I have chosen to share my own personal thoughts on 15 films that changed the horror genre forever--and in some cases, changed the whole of cinema forever while they were at it. I've chosen films that altered or even defined how we look at vampires, werewolves, zombies and ghosts. These films are the ones that planted roots that still manage to work their way into our nightmares generations later.

Each film is, in my opinion, a must-see because each film on this list mattered. To make it onto this list:

  • Each film had to be available to the public, either online or through a mainstream retailer. (Many of the older films on the list are actually available for free at websites that archive old music, books and movies.)
  • Each film had to be what most of us would consider full-length, or pretty close to it.
  • And each film had to tell a complete story.

I hope you'll discover some hidden gems here and perhaps even re-discover some old forgotten favorites. And I hope you'll weigh in with your thoughts about the films that mattered to you. too.

It all begins tomorrow, with a look at a silent horror film that is universally lauded as the German Expressionist film--and the first film in any genre to offer its audience a twist ending. (Do you know what it is?)

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