View Single Post
Old 27th June 2009, 09:38 AM
Peter Neal's Avatar
Peter Neal Peter Neal is offline
Cultist on the Rampage
Good Trader
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Helsinki
Blog Entries: 14

A few thoughts on the 90's and horror, as I remember this era very vividly, reading my monthly dose of "Fangoria" and "Gorezone" while musing over all the neat fx, which would get cut out the eventual German DTV arrival anyway...
The late 80's/early 90's saw the likes of the MPAA, BBFC, (German) FSK etc getting very scissor-happy, draining most of the expected blood from the likes of the later Paramount Fridays, lots of "New Line Cinema" titles (like "Leatherface") before they'd even reached a US theatrical release.
Lots and lots of US horror couldn't even get released at all or only heavily cut in countries like the UK, Germany, Sweden, Finland etc.
The fans weren't getting any longer what they wanted, so subsequently the former money making franchises didn't really deliver box-office-wise any more.
The success of Freddy Krueger had also turned most of the competition into lukewarm "Nightmare" wannabees, which didn't manage to be either scary or funny. Instead of reaching the crossover audience of the "Elm Street" series, the likes of "Dr. Giggles" and "Childs Play 3" didn't manage to score either with the mainstream or the horror fanbase
Couple that with the constantly bad press for the genre during that era and it's not so hard to see why the studios had to wrap up their potential scarefests in a far glossier fashion to catch the mainstream crowd of those years.
You see, like any other cinma crowd, the 90's audience did very much have an urge to be scared- but since "horror" was very much "out" and mostly associated with those nerdy male adolescent looser types (pretty much the way many of today's mainstream horror fanbase might view the fanboys of "August Underground", "Murder Set Pieces" etc), the "psychological thriller" had to step in for as long as it took to have a phenomenon like "Scream" coming along just about the time as the "it's-not-a-horror-film" horror movies were running out of steam themselves with the likes of "The Bone Collector" and "Copycat" etc.
"Psycholgical thrillers" were horror for those people, who looked down on the slashers and zombie flicks of the 80's as depraved garbage.
Films like "Misery" and "Silence of the Lambs" got widely embraced, because- hey!- they won Oscars and got rave they were "okay" as the "scary movies" for the "middle classes" in the very PC-ish 90's.

Incidently, following the Hannibal Lecter movies, I'll continue my reviews of "psychological thrillers" of that era veeery soon...
Reply With Quote