How 90s Teen Screamfests Brought Self-Aware Horror Into the Mainstream

How 90s Teen Screamfests Brought Self-Aware Horror Into the Mainstream

Among all the traditions horror broke and reinvented during the 1990s, perhaps none proved more impactful than a surge in self-referential “meta” horror. Films like Scream, I Know What You Did Last Summer, and Urban Legend gleefully dismantled genre tropes, commenting knowingly on clichés even as they deployed them for maximum scare factor. These slick, mainstream teen screamfests brought a bold new era of horror satire to multiplexes and sparked a lucrative subgenre. While horror … Read The Full Article

How Scream Saved Slasher Cinema by Savagely Satirizing Its Tropes

Scream 1996 custom art work from horror facts

Among all the slick, sarcastic teen screamfests of late 90s horror, Wes Craven’s smash-hit Scream stands apart as the most incisively influential. Released in 1996, Scream playfully skewered and celebrated the slasher genre’s derivative clichés and tired tropes even as it expertly weaponized them in classic Craven fashion. The script’s satirical brilliance merged with masterful direction to produce an instant pop culture phenomenon that both mocked and honored horror’s past, present and future. After exhausting … Read The Full Article

Meta Before Scream: Recalling the Genre-Bending Brilliance of Wes Craven’s New Nightmare

Wes Craven's New Nightmare Freddy Collage

Among Wes Craven’s filmography, 1994’s New Nightmare remains criminally underappreciated for its ahead-of-its-time meta-horror storytelling. After fatigue set in across six ponderous Nightmare on Elm Street sequels, Craven returned to restore creative passion by deconstructing Freddy Krueger’s cinematic realm through a story set in “the real world.” New Nightmare shattered genre walls with self-awareness years before it became trendy. By setting his slasher sequel within Hollywood itself, with Heather Langenkamp stalked by a demonic entity … Read The Full Article