All tagged Horror Stories

The Long Walk: Part One

The Long Walk may not be a great book but it’s a fascinating career choice for the emerging Richard Bachman, and a tremendous palate cleanser between King’s earliest works and the flurry of cocaine-fueled activity that would be the hallmark of his late-1970’s and 1980’s output.

I Know What You Need

“I Know What You Need” was first published in Cosmopolitan in 1976, and while the choice of maret may have been due to the story’s soap opera conceit, the story shows off one of Stephen King’s best qualities: the ability to build fantasy on top of a foundation of realism.

The Sisters

In the top floors of an abandoned hotel, a group of young girls rally around the comfort and protection of a mysterious supernatural force called the Sisters. When one of the girls, Wendy, starts having strange visions, she begins to question whether the Sisters are truly the saviors they claim, or something much more sinister.

Strawberry Spring

Like “The Mangler,” “Sometimes They Come Back,” and “The Boogeyman” before it, “Strawberry Spring” suffers from a lack of imagination at the crucial moment. What begins as a solid world-building exercise, showing how a small community can devolve into panic with a little injection of chaos, turns into a strange gotcha finale that is somehow both unearned and wholly unoriginal, even by 1970’s standards.

The Mangler

"The Mangler" is not a terribly great story. The characters are boilerplate and the thinly-plotted police procedural is limp. Yet the story has a through current that is prescient and terrifying.

Jerusalem's Lot

The first short in Stephen King’s 1977 story collection Night Shift, “Jerusalem’s Lot” is a play on the formula of Dracula that takes the former novel’s dread and ramps it up to 11.

The Shining

The Shining represents a huge step forward for King, both in the level of mastery on display and in the multi-layered story. If there were fears that Carrie and ‘Salem’s Lot were flukes, The Shining put those to bed.

The Ritual

The Ritual may not be the most original horror film to come out this year, but it makes up for that with great acting, tension, and a final creature that is one for the ages.

An Education in Horror

Every horror fan has an origin story, that moment when they realize they’ve found something truly special. Mine began with Aliens, and I’ve continued my horror education throughout my life. Here are the five films that have most affected me.

Stillborn

When the dead started attacking, my wife and I barricaded the house with all the furniture we could find. We put couches against doors, hammered shelves and floorboards across windows, put heavy things against all entrances. It looked like an explosion had blown all the furniture to the walls. The house was empty and turned inside out.