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Glitchcraft: Self-Reflexive Horror, Genre, and Technology

Edited October 2021
  • 13 movies

Storytelling wouldn’t be anything without technology, and neither would genre; horror itself is so shaped and defined by the ways that we tell it, make it, and create it. From viral videotapes to mysterious records that contain bewitching spells, the technology filmmakers and artists use says as much about them, about horror, and about creation itself as the stories themselves. Urban legends spread through word of mouth in a marginalized community in one film, and are hidden from the public by the government despite heavy filmic evidence in another. These films are great horror movies, sure; but they’re also about the horror genre and how technology impacts how we interact, engage, and are shaped by those stories, technology more broadly, and the ongoing conversation between horror, technology and audiences.

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More lists from Kyle Turner 4

Queerness and queer horror — which is to say horror that is about or aestheticizes queerness, otherness, sexual deviancy, as experience, metaphor, dream, and nightmare — are embedded in the history of the genre, from Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula to James Whale’s 1935 film The Bride of Frankenstein. From a masked killers (one of which uses a dildo knife) to genderqueer dolls, the films selected for this program elaborate upon and extrapolate from queerness not merely as identity but as aesthetic impulse, rooted in subversion, confrontation, camp, an understanding of queerness as a tool to challenge, or deconstruct, normative ideas in art and society. Drenched in blood, paranoia, and forbidden desire, horror is queer down to the bone.
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