The Undying Monster (1942)

Director John Brahms was best known for his sumptuously decorated murder mysteries, 1944’s The Lodger and 1945’s Hangover Square. Before he was getting A-list talent to go alongside his beautifully decorated costume dramas he crafted this mystery, itself a bizarre amalgamation of the dying Universal monsters franchise and the old dark house thriller. The Undying…

The Alligator People (1959)

As the ’50s came to a close the creature feature slammed into the wall with all the force of a wet washrag. Studio bosses tended to assume blending a person with some type of animal would equal buckets of money, or at least enough drive-in dollars to justify its existence. I doubt those associated with…

Carnival of Souls (1962)

Carnival of Souls is the touchstone from which directors like George Romero made their best works.  I cite Romero especially because watching Carnival of Souls will easily make you think of Night of the Living Dead as both have a similar aesthetic in their black and white composition and the depiction of the dead (the…

The Shining (1980)

What can be written about The Shining at this point? It’s a masterpiece directed by the legendary Stanley Kubrick that tells a horror story both in the mind and outside it. A haunted house film filled with psychological trauma. I didn’t want to put The Shining on this list but I haven’t seen it uncensored…

The Cat and the Canary (1927)

Audiences today complain about Hollywood’s dearth of creativity, with endless remakes peppering your local multiplex. But it’s ironic to hear this when many classic movies were made by this process of reskinning an old cat. My first foray into the cinematic work of Bob Hope started with 1939’s The Cat and the Canary, a fun horror…

Son of Frankenstein (1939)

The horror genre turned Universal Studios into a flourishing business, but in just a decade it was already falling from grace. The rapid release of titles fatigued audiences, putting the studio back into the red. After successful re-releases of Dracula and Frankenstein, Universal decided to take a chance on another walk with the flat-top Creature.…