The Invention of Modern Horror Movies

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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.”