No Title Productions May 28, 2023 0

Hereditary - The Best Horror Films of All Time

There’s a reason horror is the most popular genre of film: it has the power to scare us like nothing else. Its roots stretch back to the early 20th century when Alfred Hitchcock shook the foundations of cinema with his psychological thriller Psycho, which became a touchstone for the genre. The film paved the way for the slasher film, in which a mysterious killer terrorizes a group of unsuspecting people. And while Hitchcock’s tense, nerve-wracking tale of Norman Bates was certainly terrifying, it also set the stage for films that would use horror to explore bigger themes such as mental illness and social isolation.

In the ’50s, horror started to merge with science fiction as fears of nuclear doom and communist invasion seeped into movies such as The War of the Worlds and Invasion of the Body Snatchers. By the 1970s, occult horror started to gain traction, allowing filmmakers to explore demonic possession and Satanic rituals more freely. And in 1980, William Friedkin’s The Exorcist became the scariest movie of all time, despite receiving death threats from religious viewers for its depictions of demons possessing children.

The ’90s saw the rise of found footage horror, with Oren Peli’s 1999 film The Blair Witch Project revving things up before Paranormal Activity shook it all up for good. By introducing the audience to a terrifying plethora of creepy-crawly goings-on in their own homes, this sub-genre made horror more personal and relatable to the masses.

And the ’00s gave rise to a new wave of horror that would use its eerie visuals to explore more serious topics. Films such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer would show how a vulnerable high school girl could be redeemed by taking on monsters and slaying vampires. But it was Hereditary – the 2018 movie that’s both terrifying and thought-provoking – that really took the genre to the next level.

It’s a brilliantly made fright flick that examines grief and depression while scaring its audience with gruesome killing sprees. Director Ari Aster is no stranger to exploring heavy themes – his debut feature was 2011’s The Wailing – but it’s Hereditary that proves he’s a master of the form with a film that’s both intelligent and emotionally resonant.

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