What a trip down memory lane! Gingold’s collection of mostly New York City movie advertisements begins in 1970 with Bloodthirsty Butchers and ends with 1989’s I, Madman, highlighting the evolution of horror films. Not all horror movies are memorialized, but that’s what the Internet is for. Each year comes with brief reviews of a leading film or interesting tidbits of information regarding a film, its cast, or director.
I have loved horror since my introduction to the genre in 1980 with Death Ship. The 1980s section brought memories of reading reviews and articles in Fangoria, watching late-night movies, and scaring others with tales of movies forbidden to them.
Newsprint Nightmares embraces the reader’s memories and doesn’t clutter the leisurely stroll through the horror movie graveyard with unnecessary exposition—it’s just the reader, the movie ad, and their memories.
One interesting aspect of this stroll down memory lane is noticing the flow of themes and how each decade reflected social anxiety. We can see the rise and acceptance of motorcycle horror and graphic violence against women that would grow into grindhouse. The explosion of paranormal movies and tales of possession at the height of the Satanic Worshipers scare in the 80s. And how the social outcast changed into a psychological force to be reckoned. When you’re living in the season of change, it’s hard to notice the finer nuance aside from having more fantastically terrifying movies to watch.
This book is a must-have for horror fans.