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How do we define a “monster movie”?

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thatboy Relationship Status: Dating Catwoman
Feb 26th 2021 at 8:59:38 PM

I’ve been flirting with creating an index for monster movies. The problem is I don’t really know what qualifies as a “monster movie”? Are Ghosts, Demons, Dinosaurs, Sentient Aliens, Robots, Killer Animals (like Jaws) or “human monsters” like slashers (Norman Bates, Micheal Myers, Jason Voorhees, Leatherface, etc), cannibals (Hannibal Lector) and deformed characters (The Phantom, Quasimodo, Elephant Man, etc)?

Scarecrow4774 from Massachusetts Relationship Status: Wishing you were here
Feb 27th 2021 at 7:20:13 PM

Monster movies have been their own separate category, usually involving creatures or giant animals. Here's Wikipedia's article on them.

Examples include Jaws, Creature from the Black Lagoon, and I'd say almost all of the films made by Guillermo del Toro.

Edited by Scarecrow4774 on Feb 27th 2021 at 10:20:39 AM

"Come on you target for faraway laughter, come on you stranger, you legend, you martyr, and shine!"- Pink Floyd
Feb 28th 2021 at 11:43:55 AM

Kaiju films are a sub-genre of monster movies, that's for sure.

I don't think films about murderous humans are monster movies, unless they have some sort of supernatural powers. Films about killer animals are monster movies, though.

Mar 18th 2021 at 9:00:42 AM

I tend to treat movies about killer animals in a separate category, unless said animals have some fantastical or science-fiction quality to them (the dinosaurs from Jurassic Park, for example). If it's just a regular animal that happens to be attacking people, then it doesn't really belong in the "monster" category IMHO. We have those in real life, after all.

So in my opinion, Jaws wouldn't exactly count, since it focuses on an ordinary great white shark. The Meg, on the other hand, would count, since it involves a prehistoric Megalodon shark inexplicably surviving to the present day in a deep-sea trench.

Edited by ElSquibbonator on Mar 18th 2021 at 12:03:23 PM

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