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10 Horror Movies That Revolutionized The Genre

18 August 2013 | Features, Film Lists | by Deseree Garcia

horror movies

In this post-modern era of horror, we have all types of horror films to choose from. Whether from an original Slasher film to a paranormal cinematic feature; it’s so hard to know where and what movies started it. So instead of thinking of watching a horror remake, sequel, prequel or reboot, here we land a list of horrors that changed the genre to what we see today or will never see one like it again.

Here are 10 great horror films that changed the genre.


10. American Psycho


Plot: Patrick Bateman(Christian Bale), a rich engaged Wall Street businessman; whose secret murderous and yet sexual insanity prowls in the increasing New York night.

How it changed horror: Let us start with one of the greatest horrors of the past decade; with Bale making such a creepy, terrifying yet trademark performance in Slasher horror film.This movie made Bale a star before Chris Nolan found him a new monumental spotlight. This film is gory, mysterious, sexual, terrifying with one of the most discussed endings of horror history. This is one of the most known movies of Bret Easton Harris of his acclaimed novel and in today’s time.


9. Nightmare on Elm Street

Nightmare on Elm Street

Plot: Events of kids being murdered in their sleep, recalling seeing a half burned man with knives for fingers in their dreams. Nancy, a teenager experiencing the same symptoms decides to face against him.

How it changed horror: The complete original of many sequels and prequels that started a legend. It started a trend, the first horror film to feature the discussion of a well known human conscious: dreaming, fantasy and reality. Also starring a little known role of a now well known actor Johnny Depp; this film began the ever lasting trend of the slasher, Freddie Krueger.



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  • Philip210

    Yea until pointless remakes & the Paranormal Activity nearly ruined it. Thank God for James Wan & his movies. Also I have never thought of American Psycho as a horror film, more of a thriller/satire.

  • Carey Griffiths

    I’m not usually one to complain about grammar but this article seems like it was written by someone in high school.

  • José Rafael Solis Corps

    I have to say I never thought of Black Swan as horror. Thriller, yes, horror no. I would’ve taken it out and put in Exorcist, which is the great classic and hardly one that should miss in a list of this kind.

  • Bradley Stier

    It’s Bret Easton Ellis.

  • Iam_Spartacus

    Yes, The Exorcist should definitley be on this list, it was a milestone in intelligent horror and make up effects by legendary make up man Dick Smith.

  • aprince66

    How is Jaws, Exorcist and Night of the Living Dead not on this list?

  • Sam Silbert

    Honestly, I would have replaced Black Swan with Shaun of the Dead, which I think was one of the first horror/comedy crossovers. Also, huge mistake leaving out Night of the Living Dead, hugely important in modern day horror cinema, jus saying.

    • Sam Silbert

      Oh, and the Blair Witch Project??

  • rerun717

    I don’t see how you can put “Black Swan” on this list as it’s just too new to really have revolutionized anything. “Night of the Living Dead” is the obvious omission based of the zombie legacy as well as placing societal issues into a horror movie.