Jon Towlson is a film critic and the author of CANDYMAN (DEVIL'S ADVOCATES) (Auteur/Columbia University Press, 2018), THE TURN TO GRUESOMENESS IN AMERICAN HORROR FILMS, 1931-1936 (McFarland, 2016), CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND (CONSTELLATIONS) (Auteur/Columbia University Press, 2016) and the Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Award-nominated SUBVERSIVE HORROR CINEMA: COUNTERCULTURAL MESSAGES OF FILMS FROM FRANKENSTEIN TO THE PRESENT (McFarland, 2014). He is a regular contributor to Starburst Magazine, and has also written for the BFI, Scream, The Dark Side, Diabolique, Paracinema, Exquisite Terror, Irish Journal of Gothic and Horror Studies, Shadowland Magazine, Bright Lights Film Journal, Offscreen, Cine Excess and Digital Film-maker Magazine. He lives in the UK.
REVIEWS OF THE TURN TO GRUESOMENESS IN AMERICAN HORROR FILMS, 1931-1936.
"This may well be the book on 'classic horror' to beat this year." - Tim Lucas, VIDEO WATCHDOG
"Towlson's book is ridiculously informative, and yet still a well-paced, entertaining read...This is not only one of the best horror history books I've read this year, but stands as one of the best on the golden age ever written." - Gavin Schmitt, THE FRAMING BUSINESS.
"The book details the many battles, and concessions made with censors, to get the films completed and into theaters... it's a rewarding read because it brings us to the table of the filmmakers, what they wanted to create, how far they wanted to go and were able to go." - Doug Gibson, PLAN 9 CRUNCH.
"Insightful, scarily well researched and utterly fascinating." - James Gracey, author of Dario Argento (Kamera Books, 2010).
"Towlson contends that the horror films of the 30s are actually an "embryonic form" of the revered American horror films of the 1970s.... and that they are much more subversive and much more gruesome than we remember. " - Joseph Maddrey, MOVIES MADE ME
"Vital research and analysis of classic American horror film" - Donato Totaro, Offscreen.
"How transgressive images and themes from the early 1930s set a tone for what was to follow decades later" - RONDO HATTON CLASSIC HORROR AWARDS (nominated for BOOK OF THE YEAR, 2016)
REVIEWS OF SUBVERSIVE HORROR CINEMA
"Brain candy for the critical horror fan...strikes a perfect balance between rigorous and readable."
- RUE MORGUE
"Never less than enjoyable and provocative...an impressive, well written and incisive look at genre theory. It is certain to make you look at some movies afresh."
- STRANGE THINGS ARE HAPPENING
"A fascinating and thought-provoking book, not only from a film history viewpoint, but as a work of social record too... intelligent, well written and insightful...highly recommended."
"This thoroughly detailed and enjoyably written book is an important addition to the continually expanding list of studies devoted to genre film theory."
- EXQUISITE TERROR
"Towlson's terror trip through history yields plenty of fascinating examples..learn and enjoy."
"The research is thorough. The organization is brilliantly methodical. The writing is precise, almost surgical. If you're a serious horror fan, you need to read this book."
- MOVIES MADE ME
"Opens your eyes to films you thought you knew."
"Spectacular...This highly entertaining collection of essays is informative and engaging."
"An ambitious work examining horror film from when the genre was officially born with Universal Studios' monster pictures to present day cult classics."
- DEAD RECKONINGS
"Precise, elegant, easy to read, and free of jargon."
- ZEITSCHRIFT FUR FANTASTIKFORSCHUNG
"Towlson's analysis of Reaganomics is spot on."
- SF CROW'S NEST
"Evidences a good deal of serious research"
"Brings insight and social analysis to films rare and familiar."
- RONDO HATTON CLASSIC HORROR AWARDS (nominated for BEST BOOK OF 2014)