Rue Morgue offers cornucopia for horror fans

Rue Morgue coffin boxThe award-winning magazine Rue Morgue offers horror fans an all-encompassing experience of the world of horror. Launched in 1997 and published bi-monthly, the magazine represents the most prominent arm of a brand dedicated to horror. Rue Morgue also hosts events and produces films. If you know my background, you know that I’ve shifted my creative focus from music to writing. That includes taking a greater interest in one of passions, horror—especially since publishing my first horror novel, The Shatter Point. What intrigued me about Rue Morgue when I recently discovered it was its broad embrace of all things horror. Not just films or books, but an entire range of cultural offerings. Continue reading →

10 best movies featuring a ghost story

Movie poster for Gothic ghost story Crimson PeakI love a good ghost story. Movies abound in the horror and slasher genres, some with quite effective soundtracks. Fewer films, however, qualify as a legitimate ghost story. That may be because it’s more challenging to subtly create dread than to shock with jump shots and gore. The 10 movies listed below don’t simply scare us. They use ghosts to explore themes of greed, guilt, loyalty, hubris, jealousy… Whether American, Spanish, British, Australian, Thai, or Japanese, these movies play with our sense of what is real. The characters themselves don’t quite know what to believe, but all of them must ultimately confront something fundamental about themselves or the world. The soundtracks, all using different approaches, effectively enhance the atmosphere. Continue reading →

Psycho tops list as best horror music score

The Bates home from PsychoI watched Psycho last night as part of my 31 days of Halloween movie binge. Bernard Herrmann, who composed the music for Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 film, probably didn’t realize he was writing what would become the most famous film score for a horror movie. The dissonant, shrieking violins that accompany the shower scene may be the most identifiable music passage in film history. As Marion Crane sits at her motel room desk writing figures, the strings play slow, brooding music. She tears up the paper to flush it down the toilet. (By the way, this was the first time a toilet was pictured in any movie.) The music stops. She gets in the shower. We watch as a shadowy figure enters the bathroom and rips open the shower curtain. The biting music launches in tandem with her screams and the knife thrusts. But the entire score exhibits genius. Continue reading →