Considering shooting a slasher? Here’s everything you need to know about this cutthroat horror sub-genre.
The great wolfcrow has done it again in another comprehensive filmmaking breakdown. This time, instead of dissecting famous individual scenes (like the Joker’s pencil trick in The Dark Knight) or the 10 stages of post-production, we instead get a deep dive into everyone’s favorite horror niche - the Slasher.
In the video essay below, Sareesh Sudhakaran breaks down not just slasher by definition (and as opposed to classic horror or thriller movies), but also examines the subtle nuances of the slasher sub-genre and what makes the niche so popular over the years.
Unlocking the Secrets of the Slasher Film
You can read Sudhakaran’s full essay here, which goes pretty in-depth into his slasher genre research. He also includes his own personal top 5 slasher films which he uses predominantly in the video essay above.
Halloween (1978) – It’s the perfect slasher in every which way.
Deep red (1974) – A brilliant mix of music, colors and atmosphere. Style and substance.
Psycho (1960) – I don’t think I need to say anything about this, except it is the first movie to influence the modern slasher.
Black Christmas (1974) – You never see the killer, ever. Yet, you are scared.
Scream (1996) – This is the movie that actually brought the word ‘slasher’ into popular consciousness. Unfortunately, it is also the movie most people define slashers by.
Here at No Film School, we’re big fans of the slasher genre as well. Not just for its cinematic relevance (it has been a part of the cinema landscape for decades now), but also for its DIY and indie filmmaking roots. The slasher has long been a favorite of up-and-coming filmmakers and filmmaking friends looking to shoot a project on the weekends.
If you are interested in shooting a slasher of your own, to go along with the research above, you can also learn How One of the Most Influential Horror Films of All Time Made Slashers Possible, watch these 5 Modern Horror Staples Established by Classic Slasher Flicks, and check out how Before These Actors Became Stars, They Got Killed in Slasher Flicks.
Also, if you have a favorite slasher (or a project of your own to share), let us know in the comments below!