Fun and fright have long been partners in the cinema, dating back to the silent film era and progressing to the Scary Movie franchise and other recent releases. This guide takes a comprehensive look at the comedy-horror movie genre, from the earliest stabs at melding horror and hilarity during the nascent days of silent film, to its full-fledged development with The Bat in 1926, to the Abbott and Costello films pitting the comedy duo against Frankenstein's Monster, the Mummy and other Universal Studio monsters, continuing to such recent cult hits as Shaun of the Dead and Black Sheep. Selected short films such as Tim Burton's Frankenweenie are also covered. Photos and promotional posters, interviews with actors and a filmography are included.
"Film Parody is about one of the most prolific and profitable modes of contemporary film-making. It provides an introduction to the films and a theoretical account of how parody operates on textual, pragmatic, and socio-cultural levels. Harries asserts that film parody is now so routinized by the major studios that it must be considered, in its own right, as a major mode of contemporary film-making."
In The Laughing Dead: The Horror-Comedy Film from Bride of Frankenstein to Zombieland, editors Cynthia J. Miller and A. Bowdoin Van Riper have compiled essays on the comic undead that look at the subgenre from a variety of perspectives. Spanning virtually the entire sound era, this collection considers everything from classics like The Canterville Ghost to modern cult favorites like Shaun of the Dead.
Other films discussed include Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Beetlejuice, Ghostbusters, House on Haunted Hill, ParaNorman, Scream, Vampire’s Kiss, and Zombieland. Contributors in this volume consider a wide array of comedic monster films—from heartwarming (The Book of Life) to pitch dark (The Fearless Vampire Killers) and even grotesque (Frankenhooker). The Laughing Dead will be of interest to scholars and fans of both horror and comedy films, as well as those interested in film history and, of course, the proliferation of the undead in popular culture.
"The Rocky Horror Picture Show" is simultaneously one of the iconographic touchstones of 1970s cinema and a timeless romp that appeals equally to every fresh generation. Created with a sharp eye for cult and context alike "Rocky Horror" leaped effortlessly from stage to celluloid losing none of its immediacy and spontaneity in the process ä and maybe gathering more. Dave Thompson goes deep inside the phenomenon to trace the story and the strangeness that is "The Rocky Horror Picture Show".
Creepshow is here reassessed by Simon Brown, who examines the making and release of the film and its legacy through a comic book adaptation and two sequels. His analysis focuses on the key influences on the film, not just Romero and King, but also the anthology horrors of Amicus Productions, body horror cinema, and the special make up effects of Tom Savini, the relationship between horror and humor, and most notably the tradition of EC horror comics of the 1950s, from which the film draws both its thematic preoccupations and its visual style.
Publication Date: 2019-02-28
One of the top-grossing independent films of all time, The Evil Dead (1981) sparked a worldwide cult following, resulting in sequels, remakes, musicals, comic books, conventions, video games and a television series. Examining the legacy of one of the all-time great horror films, this collection of new essays covers the franchise from a range of perspectives. Topics include The Evil Dead as punk rock cinema, the Deadites' (demon-possessed undead) place in the American zombie tradition, the powers and limitations of Deadites, evil as affect, and the films' satire of neoliberal individualism.