A common complaint about the horror genre is that it sometimes depicts violence towards women or perpetuates negative stereotypes. This criticism was especially lobbed at the slasher genre, most notably through Siskel and Ebert’s 1980 take on I Spit on Your Grave and various slasher films. Dubbed “Women in Danger,” their commentary said that the 1970s wave of horror films gleefully terrorized women on screen, while the audience cheered. Their thoughts are still debated today, but as we begin a new decade, there are plenty of women making brilliant horror films and thus diversifying the genre. Furthermore, February is now Women in Horror Month. In honor of that, here is a list of 10 contemporary horror films directed by women.
Brian Fanelli fell in love with horror movies the first time he watched Night of the Living Dead as a kid. His writing on the genre has been published by Horror Homeroom, The Schuylkill Valley Journal, and Signal Horizon Magazine. He is also the author of two books of poems, Waiting for the Dead to Speak (NYQ Books), winner of the Devil's Kitchen Poetry Prize, and All That Remains (Unbound Content). His non-horror writing has been published in The Los Angeles Times, World Literature Today, Paterson Literary Review, Pedestal Magazine, and elsewhere. Brian has an M.F.A. from Wilkes University and a Ph.D. from Binghamton University. Currently, he teaches at Lackawanna College. www.brianfanelli.com.