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Post by ThePunisher Fri Sep 22, 2023 2:19 pm

What do you consider to be classic horror? Is it the 1930's, with the Dracula/Frankenstein/Wolfman movies that came out? How about the 1960's/1970s Hammer Horror Dracula movies with Christopher Lee? And of course, what about eh 1980s, with the flood of slasher movies that came out?

Is classic horror really just confined to a decade, or is it more fluid? What exactly IS " classic horror"?
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Post by I'm Not a Goalie Fri Sep 22, 2023 4:00 pm

Interesting question. I've been trying to development a horror trivia game for several years now, and one of the four categories is Classic Horror, and I'm having the hardest time deciding what should be included in that category.

I think you have to start by compartmentalizing that theirs two genre's of classic horror. The classic horror era, which would include all the old Universal and Hammer movies, and the second group, movies that are just straight up classics... Films like Halloween, The Exorcist, Friday the 13th, Evil Dead, Nightmare on Elm Stream, Alien etc... All are classic horror films without a doubt, but they don't exactly belong in the same category as say, Dracula, Frankenstein, or even Psycho.

The hard question to pin down is when the classic era of horror ended, and the modern era of horror began. Some say it was Psycho in 1960, because movies in the horror genre were largely sci-fi films marketed to kids, and Psycho showed that horror movies could be scary and still appeal to a more mainstream audience. Psycho felt like an outlier though more than a genre changer. I'd say it was more of the late 60's early 70's when horror films started to feel like horror films again with NLD, TCM, Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes, Black Christmas... Then you had The Exorcist, Halloween, Alien, The Omen and others come out in the mid to late 70's. The 80's of course were such an iconic decade that they needed a three part series of five hour documentaries just to chronicle it all.

Then of course there's the Stephen King conundrum... How can he not be considered as anything other than Classic, yet his work spans decades.

I think I eventually settled on placing anything released before 1980 in the classic horror category, but I'm not really sure I'm happy with that determination, lol
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Post by Jason Voorhees Sun Sep 24, 2023 3:54 pm

Universal Original Monsters are by far the most Classic form of Horror there is

Frankenstein's Monster?
Count Dracula?
Wolfman?
The Mummy?
Invisible Man?
The Creature from the Black Lagoon?

All iconic/legendary of their eras! I personally love Christopher Lee's Dracula!
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Post by SonofOdin6039 Tue Oct 03, 2023 10:34 am

Well, that does raise an interesting question...when is the cutoff point from classic horror to modern? Right now we consider the Universal monsters to be classic, and rightfully so, but where will horror be in the next 10-20 years and what would be considered classic as time moves on? I agree Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, Creature from the Black Lagoon, Wolf Man, and Invisible Man will always remain the original classic icons, but should Psycho, Night of the Living Dead, and Godzilla join them in that illustrious class? The Hammer films are in that gray zone transitional era where classic will merge into modern, so by default I would mark them as classic. Moving on to recent modern, Jaws, Halloween, Friday the 13th, Nightmare, Hellraiser, Scream, Saw, Texas Chainsaw, and so on started modern horror as we know it today. People years from now will mark them as classic, but we were around when they debuted. So I guess, at least from our generation standpoint, the 70s brought in modern horror as we know it and their predessors would have to be labeled classic. But in the years to come, that cutoff point would inevitably move forward by a decade as we get more and more franchises and movies .
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Post by t8mc Fri Nov 10, 2023 2:16 pm

While the 20s/30s are considered the classic era of horror, they're a tough watch sometimes. Nosferatu is particularly hard to take seriously. All I remember from it now is the scene where the guy wakes up and does a proper ridiculous stretch like he's in a cartoon or something.

For me, the '80s is the decade for classic horror. Fright Night, Evil Dead, lots of Fridays, NOEMS, Lost Boys etc etc.
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Post by Jason Voorhees Tue Nov 14, 2023 5:27 am

I have not once watched Nosferatu...
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