Design a site like this with
Get started

Growing up with Classic Horror Films

Horror films and I go back a long, long time. My earliest cinematic memories are of being allowed to stay up late on a Saturday night with my parents when at elementary school to watch an old horror film on TV. My parents always watched them in the dark, so we sat bathed in the flickering glow of the TV, me peeping out from behind a cushion clutched tightly to my face. I remember screaming in terror at heavily scratched and crackly prints of the old terrors. My father always told me to go to bed if it was so scary, but I was determined to see them through to the end. We followed the ritual every week. Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, The Wolf Man, Dracula’s Daughter, The Invisible Man, The Bride of Frankenstein and many, many more. When the video age dawned, my father and I would watch all of the latest horror films, but I would always return to the classics of the 1930s and 1940s. When I grew up, if I ever did, my love for the old monsters and the actors who played them never waned. At the pinnacle would always be Karloff and Lugosi. My son grew up on modern horrors and had no interest in those creaky old black and white films until this year. He had to do a project on American history for school and decided to look at the contribution immigrants and refugees have made towards American culture, focusing on the early days of cinema and the classic horror movies. When he started to watch the Universal classics, he was a little annoyed with me at first because I hadn’t showed them to him before he watched more graphic fare. He felt he had lost the chance to feel full impact of the films, which seemed tame compared to his usual diet of Japanese films such as Ring and Ju-On. But as he watched more and re-watched the ones he had already seen, he became totally absorbed in them. Today, he told me that they were head and shoulders above all other horror films. I asked which he liked the best. I was surprised by his answer. He rated Dracula the very best, closely followed by Frankenstein. When I asked him why, he replied that Dracula was the best because Lugosi was……. He couldn’t put it into words but I understood. Lugosi certainly was…….

You can read about the life and work of Bela Lugosi on my blog devoted to him, The Bela Lugosi Blog


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: