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Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Reviews of queer horror films throughout the decades

To celebrate Halloween at The Globe, I’ve decided to share my reviews on queer horror films. I was inspired to do this rating list after seeing multiple creators on Tik-Tok review queer horror movies.

I have rated a few films that I have seen on the grounds of queerness, scariness and overall plot. These movies have queer characters, queer actors, are made by queer creators and include queer themes and motifs. I decided to leave out the most popular queer horror films such as 1975’s “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and 1996’s “Scream.”


Bit (2019)

Synopsis: This vampire flick follows a teenage girl, played by Nicole Maines, who moves into her brother’s house for the summer. She becomes charmed by a group of lesbian vampires who decide to rid the town of its toxic and predatory men.

Queerness: 5/5

The representation is there. The main character, Laurel, is played by a transgender actress. The main group of vampires are all lesbians. The sexuality of the girls and the gender of Laurel in the film are not just used as plot points to help deliver the story.

Scariness: 1/5

This film is made with Gen-Z in mind, with the comedy and dialogue to match. This is a movie directed towards teens, so aside from a few jump scares and some blood, this film is pretty tame. It is more fun and playful and will probably not keep the horror fan up at night.

Overall plot: 4/5

This film is a fun take on the usual trope of a girl group, filled with rage, that decides to go after predatory men. The critiques on feminism can be a little questionable depending on one’s view, and the plot had a few holes as well. If you are looking for a fun movie with a trans lead who turns into a vampire and decides to rid her town of toxic masculinity, then this movie is for you!


Dracula’s Daughter (1936)

Synopsis: This film follows Dracula’s daughter, Countess Marya Zaleska, portrayed by Gloria Holden, as she struggles to suppress her vampiric life.

Queerness 3/5

This film is historic for being the first film that featured the film motif “the lesbian vampire.” Although it does not include a same-sex kiss, near nudity or any scene that would have given audiences hints at a romantic or sexual relationship, perhaps due to the strict constraints of the Hays Code, it did include a ton of queer subtext. There are plenty of scenes where Countess Marya Zaleska longs for the blood of Janet and other females. She decides to not live as “the other.” She lives in an apartment in Chelsea as an artist, attends parties, and she does not have an accent like her father’s Transylvania accent.

Scariness: 1/5

It is a horror film from the 1930s, so it is as spooky as the Addams Family. Like many of the other movies in the Universal Monsters series, it perfectly captures the macabre, ghoulishness and ambiance of early 20th-century horror.

Overall Plot: 3/5

The plot is basic and predictable: a vampire tries to conceal her urges and ultimately loses to them, kidnaps, and goes back to her father’s castle in captivity where vampires belong. If watching from a queer perspective, this film is a film about longing for another and about misunderstanding.


Nightbreed (1990)

Synopsis: In an attempt to end his nightmares, Aaron Boone ends up seeing a psychiatrist who ultimately frames him for the violent murders occurring throughout the city. Boone becomes part of the monster community, and learns that humans are the real monsters, not the ones he sees in his dreams.

Queerness: 4.5/5

This horror fantasy film was written and directed by Clive Barker, who is one of the most profound queer horror creators of the 20th century. This film was also one of the first movies to successfully give queer audiences representation in the form of “the other.” Boone and the rest of the monsters in the film have been outcast by society and live in the Midian, where they can be themselves. They are deemed dangerous by society, so dangerous that the main goal of the antagonist, a human serial killer, in the film is to destroy the Nightbreed in its entirety as well as frame the murders on the monsters. This cult classic gave queer people representation on the silver screen in 1990 and continues to gain new fans to this day.

Scariness: 4/5

Even though the special FX prosthetics of The Nightbreed look creative, colorful and funny, the movie does contain strong violence and gore, especially when the serial killer is present.

Overall Plot: 3/5

Aside from the plot holes, this movie is an entertaining and eye-catching watch. It is worthwhile to look at the many different characters in Midian. It is easy to miss a plot point or two and get confused; however, the costume design, the set design, and the overall creativity of Barker’s story make the film worth the watch.

Barker has stated that the original cut of the film was not his favorite and has released a few different cuts of the film. I do not think the extra cut of the film is necessary for your first watch. Still, the extra cuts do provide more context to the story.



The Hunger (1983)

Synopsis: This film centers around a love triangle between two vampires and a doctor. Catherine Deneuve plays Miriam, a vampire who can give eternal life to anyone of her choosing. Her partner John Blaylock, played by David Bowie, is a vampire who starts to age rapidly, even though Miriam had given him eternal life centuries ago. A doctor named Sarah, played by Susan Sarandon, is hired by Blaylock to investigate his fading immortality.

Queerness: 4/5

The film contains David Bowie and Susan Sarandon, both queer icons in their own right before this movie was released. This film gave representation to relationships between women that were both feminine. “The Hunger” can also be viewed as an allegory for the AIDS epidemic, which was at its height in 1983. The threat of a loved one carrying an incurable blood disease haunts the movie and its characters, and the social and psychological effects can be seen during Bowie’s detransformation.

Scariness: 2.5/5

This film is more like an ominous drama with not a lot of horror elements in it.

Overall Plot: 3/5

There are interesting details in the plot, yet, the movie drags on at times.

The movie itself is visually stunning – a gothic dream. It is a perfect film to watch if you like vampire movies with a lot of sensuality, gothic horror, David Bowie, and a quick cameo from post-punk Bauhaus.







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