Decades of Dread is heading into more modern horror! The 1970s isn’t a decade I usually think of as my favorite but while putting this article together I realized I like a lot more of it than I thought. A few of the films here may be familiar, however, as with my other posts, I hope this list gives you some new ideas for the #100HorrorMoviesIn92Days Challenge!
- The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)- “When Sally hears that her grandfather’s grave may have been vandalized, she and her paraplegic brother, Franklin, set out with their friends to investigate. After a detour to their family’s old farmhouse, they discover a group of crazed, murderous outcasts living next door. As the group is attacked one by one by the chainsaw-wielding Leatherface, who wears a mask of human skin, the survivors must do everything they can to escape.” For me, this is THE quintessential horror film of the 1970s. It’s so gritty and grimy, yet somehow the cinematography is beautiful. I love this franchise so much!
- The Blood on Satan’s Claw (1971)- “The accidental unearthing of Satan’s earthly remains causes the children of a 17th-century English village to slowly convert into a coven of devil worshipers.” I almost chose The Wicker Man as my 1970s folk horror pick but I figured too many folks had seen it. The Blood on Satan’s Claw is one of the Unholy Trinity of folk horror and really should be checked out. We even did a Final Girls Feast episode on it!
- Theatre of Blood (1973)- “A Shakespearean actor takes poetic revenge on the critics who denied him recognition.” This film was clearly an inspiration for Saw. I love Vincent Price’s later films. They are all so over the top but delightfully grand.
- The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)- “Famous organist Anton Phibes is horribly disfigured in an automobile accident while rushing to the side of his sick wife and presumed to be dead. Once Phibes learns that his wife died on the operating table, he is convinced the doctors are responsible and begins exacting his revenge on all those involved.” This movie is absolutely gorgeous and one of Vincent Price’s best performances. Much like the previous film, it easily could be an inspiration for Saw.
- Tales from the Crypt (1972)- “Five people find themselves in a tomb. The Crypt keeper explains why they are there through a series of frightening stories. Based on the classic comic book.” I grew up watching Tales from the Crypt so I was delighted to find out there was a movie made long before the show. Segments feature the likes of Peter Cushing and Joan Collins. This is a must-watch!
I hope you enjoy this list as much as I do! Looking for other movies from the 1970s? Check out Letterboxd’s list! As I did with my other posts, I have also put together a Letterboxd List of 1970s horror. What are some of your favorites from this decade? Let me know in the comments below! This weekend I’ll be posting about my favorites from the 1980s so be sure to check back because I’m sure they won’t be what you expect! In the meantime, feel free to check out some of my other horror movie lists or reviews!