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A New Heritage of Horror: The English Gothic Cinema, Revised and Updated Edition

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  51 ratings  ·  8 reviews
David Pirie’s acclaimed 'A Heritage of Horror'  was the first book on the British horror movie, and the first to detect and analyse the roots of British horror, identifying it as 'the only staple cinematic myth which Britain can properly claim as its own.'  It has long been regarded as a trail-blazing classic, “having the force of a revelation”, according to one recent stu ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published January 15th 2008 by I. B. Tauris (first published March 4th 2007)
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mark monday
Oct 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: guidebooks
indispensable review of a classic period within horror. terence fisher and hammer horror are of course the most extensively discussed, but the author doesn't stint on many other fascinating works and directors. even better, the reach of this is wide, discussing everything from gender roles to production history, with everything in between. the author's perspective is a generous but critical one and his style is scholarly but by no means dry.

because i love lists, here are my favorite films from h
...more
Anne Billson
Jun 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
It's missing one star because the publishers failed to proof-read it properly, but this is a ground-breaking study of British horror cinema and a must-read for anyone interested in horror movies. ...more
G. Connor Salter
Several reviewers have already noted that this revised version isn't hugely different from the previous version except for grammar changes to some of the original text, a few new pages of insights about the material covered in the older version, and several added chapters covering new English horror films.
Advertising aside, this is still a definitive look at English horror movies, well-worth buying in any format and very readable for a scholarly text.
...more
Doris Sutherland
Apr 27, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Want a comprehensive and reliable history of horror films from the UK? Then you’d probably best check out Jonathan Rigby’s English Gothic. Want an overview of British horror which, while flawed, is positively oozing with personality? Then track down David Pirie’s A Heritage of Horror.

When the book was published in 1973, David Pirie was a rebellious youngster flying the flag for a genre that much of the British critical establishment dismissed as unworthy of attention. He even made the claim that
...more
Lauren Barnett
Jun 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: on-horror-cinema
I did this with another book - judge me for it, its a flaw - but I gave this five stars because it's essential reading if you are interested in British horror or English Gothic horror.

Pirie's argument has its flaws and I don't necessarily agree with his opinions on seventies horror films, in the first edition he even had a different idea of where horror was going. But, it's fairly easy to read, it makes a lot of good points, and it really comes from a love and respect for horror films that was
...more
Luumi Zuckerberg
Sep 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This is definitely a must-have for any horror buff.
Simon
Mar 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This used to be the essential bridge between Dennis Gifford's Pictorial History of Horror Movies and Kim Newman's Nigtmare Movies for anyone interested in UK Gothic Cinema, until the revised edition, A New Heritage of Horror was published in 2011 ...more
Abs007
Jun 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
Detailed, in depth and entertaining look at the behind the scenes shenanigans of British horror in the early days. Hammer studio's constant battles with the censor are particularly eye opening. ...more
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David Pirie was a journalist and film critic before he became a screenwriter. Just a few of his numerous credits are the BAFTA nominated adaptation for the BBC of The Woman in White and his collaboration with Lars Von Trier on the script of the Oscar nominated film Breaking the Waves. David Pirie lives in Somerset.

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