March 9, 2010
Chopping Mall: An Awakening to Horror
VHS horror in the 1980s and 1990s, like the horror comics of the 1940s and 1950s before them, needed art that was sexy, shocking, surreal, and sometimes even silly in order to stand out in the ever expanding new market of home video. I grew up in the 1980s and 1990s with parents who were careful not to let me watch a lot of adult horror movies. Therefore, much of what I learned about horror I learned from VHS box art. Every trip to the video store, I would disappear to the back of the store, passing the beaded curtain of the porno section whose mystery would appeal to me a few years later -- but not then. No, I got all the titillation I needed from the horror and horror / sci-fi section of the local Video Network.
What I imagined films like Chopping Mall to be invariably turned out more disturbing and exciting than the actual films. In fact, most of the time the box art was completely irrelevant to the film's actual plot. Yet, VHS horror box art still holds a place in my heart.
Since I never had the opportunity to watch the majority of the VHS films whose box art captivated me as a youth, I've started up this new blog: Monster Chiller Horror Theatre. Monster Chiller Horror Theatre is an attempt to seek out and write about these films. As well as modern horror, I will cover and review the sexiest, silliest, most shocking, most surreal horror films of the VHS age -- that lost age that ushered me into horror.