1 November 2011 | Moscoso1967
Well done documentary
Unfortunately, it's only a three part documentary. If you want to make a show called "a history of horror" in three hours you either try to cramp in as many "important" movies as possible, or if you wanna go into more detail you have to select a handful of examples - but by what criteria?
Mark Gatiss presents some of his favourites in these three parts (early Hollywood classics, the classic era of British horror films, and the new "post-gothic" 60s and 70s American horror movies).
Gatiss does a decent job as presenter/writer. He really seems to be a fan of these movies and has a knowledge about the development of the horror genre and (therefore) doesn't put himself into the center of attention (unlike some other TV-shows whose presenters/guests don't seem to know anything about the subject they're supposed to talk about). He really focuses on the movies, their plots, achievements, the people behind it and tries to explain why these movies or certain characters are so appealing or special. What I liked a lot were the interviews with some directors and actors. Gatiss knows the right questions to ask, so he gets some interesting/insightful answers.
Horror buffs might be disappointed, they might miss many "important" movies and there might be little new to them, but it would have been impossible to make a documentary about the history of horror films which covers every important/influential film (mainstream or independent; blockbusters, cult movies, underground cult movies, movies not just from the UK and the USA but also from Germany, Italy, Asia, etc., the entire oeuvre of certain directors, production companies, actors, etc.); the story of/behind those movies, companies, directors, writers, actors; discuss the movies and various related topics (the "monsters", the fascination of horror, the socio-political background, etc.), and include interviews and clips. Such a documentary would rather fill three days than three hours, so on the whole Mark Gatiss personal little history of horror is very well done for a three hour TV-production.