Theater terrors: transformed

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Neve Campbell played Sidney Prescott, the main character of the “Scream” movie series, for almost fifteen years, setting the new stage of the slasher genre and proving herself to be a great “final girl.” (Photo/Miramax)

Halloween comes around accompanied by many new horror movies every year; movie-goers flood to the theaters to get their personal dose of terror for this spooky season. Throughout the years, horror movies have evolved in phenomenal ways thanks to new effects and re-imagined storytelling. 

Beyond the age of early horror movies like “Bride of Frankenstein” (1935), newer classics like “Psycho” (1960) and “Halloween” (1978) established the horror/slasher genre as something major in pop culture, with the latter grossing a theatrical total of $70 million, making it one of the most successful independent films of all time. This film took the once “goofy” genre of horror and made it something serious for more modern audience — seriously spooky. 

With the changing of the decades came a distinct change of taste with horror movies metamorphosizing into something entirely different — the age of un-scary films common for past audiences long-gone. The 80s brought slasher flicks like “Evil Dead” (1981) and “Child’s Play” (1988) adding plenty of gore to the genre, an aspect not present in past movies. 

Noted for being the movie to revitalize the slasher film, “Scream” (1996), breathing new life into the subgenre with a clever plot, even acknowledges the classic horror cliches. It even dares to laugh at them while still remaining terrifying, avoiding ridiculousness. In the 2000s, the movies took an angsty turn, with the dark franchises of “Final Destination” and “Saw” starting up, remarkably gory but performing well in box offices internationally. 

Amazingly, in the past decade, reimagined narratives such as “Hush” (2016) and “Get Out” (2017) have stunned audiences, clawing their way to the top, even with all the remakes like “It” (2017) and “Pet Semetary” (2019) hitting theaters. 

With the horror movies of the past seeming less horrifying to modern terror-craving audiences compared to chilling new movies, the evolution of these films has not disappointed with redefined storylines and effects leagues ahead of what we could even imagine existing in the time of the classics of the 20th century, creating an age of new classics. 

Sebastian is a junior at American Heritage School in Plantation, Fla. and a first-year staffer for the Patriot Post. As an active member of the Pre-Medical Society at Heritage, French Honor Society and the Vice-President of the new AHS Book Club, he is glad to broaden his horizons and branch into the world of publications. His passions include creative writing, literature and he loves the arts, especially film and music. He can’t wait for a great first year.

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