Welcome monster lovers! Today I wanted to write a review on one of the best books available on all the many monsters to feature in classic horror movies over the years!
Monsters in the Movies is a book written by none other than John Landis. Landis is a renown film director and writer responsible for directing Michaels Jackson’s Thriller and An American Werewolf in London among many others.
This huge volume is a hardcover, coffee table type piece which offers an extraordinary amount of information and images. Landis offers his own insights into the movie making process and features revealing discussions with infamous horror directors, writers and actors such as, Sam Raimi, Rick Baker, Christopher Lee and John Carpenter.
The reader is taken behind the scenes to discover how the effects were created for groundbreaking films like King Kong, The Wolf Man, Evil Dead, and The Thing!
The way in which the book is organized is really interesting with each chapter tackling almost every type of monster or genre imaginable. Mad scientists, monsters from space, nature’s revenge, killer dolls, the devils work etc, etc..!
Then there’s explanations to the historic origins of archetypal figures such as, vampires, zombies, ghosts and werewolves. With every creature there is a description, numerous film titles, quotes and ample pictures and stills by means of reference. There are over 1000 amazing pics!
The entire work is written in a style which displays the author’s love for these macabre creatures. Landis is obviously a big fan and this is what comes through to the reader. His trademark humor gives the work an added sense of enjoyment.
While there are a few minor factual errors in some captions (‘Son of Frankenstein’ was Karloff’s third, not second appearance as The Monster), this doesn’t detract too much from the overall quality of this bountiful volume.
This is an essential companion for horror enthusiasts, monster hunters and all who have ever wanted to explore and assemble the legions of movie monsters.
From B-movie bogeymen and outer space oddities to big-budget terrors, Monsters in the Movies by legendary filmmaker John Landis showcases the greatest monsters ever to creep, fly, slither, stalk, or rampage across the Silver Screen!
Landis provides his own fascinating and entertaining insights into the world of moviemaking, while conducting in-depth “conversations” with leading monster makers, including David Cronenberg, Christopher Lee, John Carpenter, and Sam Raimi — to discuss some of the most petrifying monsters ever seen. He also surveys the historical origins of the archetypal monsters, such as vampires, zombies, and werewolves, and takes you behind the scenes to discover the secrets of those special-effects wizards who created such legendary frighteners as King Kong, Dracula, and Halloween’s Michael Myers. With more than 1000 stunning movie stills and posters, this book is sure to keep even the most intense fright-seekers at the edge of their seats for hours!
Below: Hear the author talk about what makes a monster…