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How on earth do horror film directors sleep at night Dont they ever wake up and say Is this what my life is about making people fear dark rooms old houses and things that go bump in the night How do they stand it all What inspires them to create these vividly outrageous spins on reality These may be the questions often asked by people who dont quite understand the method behind the madness that is the horror film These questions will be answered in this paper as it explains the development of the horror film to its present formAh the horror film One of lifes many oxy-morons how else can a large audience gather together to scare themselves to death in perfect safety The horror film was introduced to the masses in the early thirties a time when Americans sought to escape into fantasy- through their attractions to fantasies that stood their hair on endIn the beginning horror films concentrated on ghosts vampires witches and miscellaneous monsters With a few exceptions Hollywoods first wave of horror films maintained a degree of reticence that seems positively namby-pamby compared to the disgustingness of our time Occasionally a film like the 1932 Dr Jekyll exhibited some slight frankness about sex and somewhat graphic scenes were cut from Frankenstein Like horrid novels before them horror films of the thirties and forties constantly imitated that dismemberment bloodshed and decay were to be found nearby in time or space but the camera almost never caught them Films of the period did not get noticeably more gruesomeMovies then consisted of monsters monsters and more monsters They either terrorized the city in attempts to transform the human race into his own or channel aggressions that were brought on by everything from frustration to ignorance of the world around him Such monsters as the classic Dracula and Frankenstein Advertisement for movies of the thirties and forties like Frankenstein were on giant posters
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