The Invention of Modern Horror Movies

Jason Zinoman gives an account of the gifted and eccentric directors who ushered in the golden age of modern horror films in the 1970s. Shock Value: How a Few Eccentric Outsiders Gave Us Nightmares, Conquered Hollywood, and Invented Modern Horror tells how the much-disparaged horror film became an ambitious art form and box office draw. Directors such as Wes Craven, Roman Polanski, John Carpenter, and Brian De Palma—brought a gritty aesthetic, confrontational style, and political edge to horror with such classics as “Rosemary's Baby,” “Carrie,” “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” and “Halloween.”