Horror & exploitation filmmaking documentaries

by Visioneer | created - 29 Oct 2010 | updated - 3 weeks ago | Public

Updated on regular basis - in random order. They're mostly full-length documentaries about horror and exploitation filmmaking, plus some noteworthy featurettes.

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1. Going to Pieces: The Rise and Fall of the Slasher Film (2006)

Unrated | 88 min | Documentary, Horror

A documentary on the history of the slasher film.

Director: Jeff McQueen | Stars: Ed Green, John Carpenter, Wes Craven, Herb Freed

Votes: 3,133

2. American Grindhouse (2010)

Not Rated | 80 min | Documentary, Action, Comedy

A documentary about the history of exploitation movies, from the silent movie era to the 1970s.

Director: Elijah Drenner | Stars: Robert Forster, Eric Schaefer, Eddie Muller, John Landis

Votes: 2,043 | Gross: $0.01M

3. Nightmares in Red, White and Blue: The Evolution of the American Horror Film (2009)

Unrated | 96 min | Documentary, Horror

An exploration of the appeal of horror films, with interviews of many legendary directors in the genre.

Director: Andrew Monument | Stars: Lance Henriksen, Larry Cohen, Joe Dante, John Carpenter

Votes: 2,398

4. Schlock! The Secret History of American Movies (2001)

Not Rated | 89 min | Documentary

You've heard of Hollywood, a town of tinsel and glamour, the town of Paramount, Columbia and MGM.  But there is another Hollywood, a place where maverick independent EXPLOITATION FILMMAKERS... See full summary »

Director: Ray Greene | Stars: F.X. Feeney, Maila Nurmi, Michael Copner, Samuel Z. Arkoff

Votes: 520

5. A History of Horror with Mark Gatiss (2010– )

177 min | Documentary

Mark Gatiss examines the history of the horror film, from classic Hollywood monsters to Hammer's glory days and beyond.

Stars: Mark Gatiss, John Carpenter, Michael Roberts, Barbara Steele

Votes: 578

6. Monsterland (2009 TV Movie)

80 min | Documentary

Monsterland journeys through time and around the world, exploring diverse monster types, from the origins of the latex monster in devastated postwar Japan to the aliens and serial murderers... See full summary »

Director: Jörg Buttgereit | Stars: Rick Baker, John Carpenter, Joe Coleman, Joe Dante

Votes: 125

7. The American Nightmare (2000)

Not Rated | 73 min | Documentary, Horror

An examination into the nature of 1960s-'70s horror films, the artists involved, and how they reflected contemporary society.

Director: Adam Simon | Stars: George A. Romero, John Carpenter, Tom Savini, David Cronenberg

Votes: 1,749

8. Starz Inside: Fantastic Flesh (2008 TV Movie)

TV-14 | 60 min | Documentary, History

This documentary delves into the art of make-up effects with industry legends Dick Smith, Rob Bottin, Tom Savini, John Landis, Frank Darabont, Joe Dante and many others with a strong focus ... See full summary »

Director: Kevin VanHook | Stars: Howard Berger, Rob Bottin, Josh Brolin, John Carpenter

Votes: 246

9. The Fearmakers Collection (2007 Video)

300 min | Documentary

Half-hour profiles of ten of the screen's masters of classic terror and suspense, based on the book THE FEARMAKERS (St. Martin's Press, 1994) by John McCarty.

Director: John McCarty | Stars: John Agar, Dario Argento, Samuel Z. Arkoff, Jack Arnold

Votes: 28

10. Bloodsucking Cinema (2007 TV Movie)

TV-MA | 56 min | Documentary

The sound of flapping bat wings, an empty coffin, glistening fangs, tiny punctures on the neck, the sensual taste of blood, a blank reflection, fear of the cross, and death from daylight. ... See full summary »

Director: Barry Gray | Stars: Uwe Boll, Everett Burrell, John Carpenter, David S. Goyer

Votes: 150

11. Dario Argento: An Eye for Horror (2000 TV Movie)

R | 57 min | Documentary, Horror

Documentary that explores Argento's film career.

Director: Leon Ferguson | Stars: Mark Kermode, Dario Argento, John Carpenter, Michael Brandon

Votes: 565

12. 100 Years of Horror (1996– )

Unrated | 343 min | Documentary, Horror

Clips from Horror Films.

Stars: Christopher Lee, Roger Corman, Hugh Hefner, Fred Olen Ray

Votes: 302

13. Horror Business (2005 Video)

Not Rated | 82 min | Documentary

Take a walk on the scary side with guerrilla horror filmmakers and the bizarre culture that drives them to pursue their dreams. In 2003, filmmaker Christopher P. Garetano began what would ... See full summary »

Director: Christopher P. Garetano | Stars: Ray Adell, Mark Borchardt, Ron Atkins, Ken Keen

Votes: 171

14. Hanging Shadows (2007 Video)

Not Rated | 60 min | Documentary

Offers a critical appreciation of Italian horror cinema, pioneered by directors such as Dario Argento and Mario Bava, a genre that influenced filmmakers from Quentin Tarantino to Takashi Miike.

Director: Paolo Fazzini | Stars: Dario Argento, Lamberto Bava, Ruggero Deodato, Michele Soavi

Votes: 17

15. Celluloid Horror (2004)

88 min | Documentary

Celluloid Horror explores Kier-La Janisse's tireless crusade to bring obscure cult horror film to the masses through her independently run international film festival, CineMuerte, 'cinema ... See full summary »

Director: Ashley Fester | Stars: Jörg Buttgereit, Mitch Davis, Fiona Forbes, Buddy Giovinazzo

Votes: 39

16. Scream Greats, Volume I: Tom Savini (1986 Video)

60 min | Documentary, Biography, Horror

A documentary detailing the career of makeup artist Tom Savini, including clips from the various movies he's worked on.

Director: Damon Santostefano | Stars: Tom Savini, George A. Romero, Doug Clayton, Taso N. Stavrakis

Votes: 192

17. The Incredibly Strange Film Show (1988–1989)

45 min | Documentary

This show is a series of documentaries focusing on the world of psychotronic movies. Episodes focus on the lives of such diverse filmakers as Hershell Gordon Lewis, Saim Raimi, Doris ... See full summary »

Stars: Jonathan Ross, David F. Friedman, Johnny Legend, Ric Meyers

Votes: 123

18. Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy (2010 Video)

Not Rated | 240 min | Documentary, Horror

Explore the origins of "dream demon" Freddy Krueger in this award-winning documentary that takes you behind the scenes of the most frightening and imaginative horror franchise in motion picture history!

Directors: Daniel Farrands, Andrew Kasch | Stars: Heather Langenkamp, Stacey Alden, Erika Anderson, Marshall Bell

Votes: 3,759

20. His Name Was Jason: 30 Years of Friday the 13th (2009 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Horror

A documentary exploring 30 years of the "Friday The 13th" film series featuring all new interviews with cast and crew from all 12 films and various horror fans and filmmakers.

Director: Daniel Farrands | Stars: Diane Almeida, Erich Anderson, Judie Aronson, Diana Barrows

Votes: 2,657

21. The Thing: Terror Takes Shape (1998 Video)

83 min | Documentary

A revealing and insightful look into the making of this underrated horror film.

Director: Michael Matessino | Stars: John Carpenter, David Foster, Bill Lancaster, John J. Lloyd

Votes: 782

22. Halloween: 25 Years of Terror (2006 Video)

Not Rated | 83 min | Documentary, Horror

A retrospective documentary about the Halloween movie franchise.

Director: Stefan Hutchinson | Stars: P.J. Soles, Irwin Yablans, Moustapha Akkad, John Carpenter

Votes: 1,612

23. Monster Squad Forever! (2007 Video)

87 min | Documentary

This is a feature-length look into the creation of the 20 year old cult-classic, Monster Squad, including interviews with writer/director Fred Dekker, stars Tom Noonan, Duncan Regehr, Andre Gower and more.

Director: Michael Felsher | Stars: Ashley Bank, Bruce Broughton, Jake Crockett, James Daisy

Votes: 56

24. Famous Monster: Forrest J Ackerman (2007)

48 min | Documentary, Biography

Famous Monster takes a fast-paced, colorful look at the life of science fiction's greatest fan - Forrest J. Ackerman, whose 85 year love affair with the genre helped bring it into the ... See full summary »

Director: Michael MacDonald | Stars: Forrest J. Ackerman, Ray Bradbury, Bobbie Bresee, Lon Chaney Jr.

Votes: 52

25. Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story (2007)

Not Rated | 82 min | Documentary, Biography

Chronicles the last great American showman, filmmaker William Castle, a master of ballyhoo who became a brand name in movie horror with his outrageous audience participation gimmicks.

Director: Jeffrey Schwarz | Stars: Forrest J. Ackerman, John Badham, Diane Baker, Sidney D. Balkin

Votes: 474

26. The Pervert's Guide to Cinema (2006)

150 min | Documentary

Slavoj Zizek examines famous films in a philosophical and a psychoanalytic context.

Director: Sophie Fiennes | Star: Slavoj Zizek

Votes: 5,764

27. Vampira: The Movie (2006 Video)

Documentary

The new documentary by Kevin Sean Michaels VAMPIRA: THE MOVIE chronicles the life of Maila Nurmi, the first horror host. In 1954 her big break came when she played the "glamour ghoul" ... See full synopsis »

Director: Kevin Sean Michaels | Stars: David J. Skal, Forrest J. Ackerman, Zack Beseda, Jami Deadly

Votes: 98

28. The Psycho Legacy (2010 Video)

Not Rated | 87 min | Documentary

The cast and crew of all four Psycho films recall their time working on the influential horror series as today's masters of horror reminisce on what the movies stirred in them.

Director: Robert V. Galluzzo | Stars: Jason Allentoff, Sharen Camille, Mike Cucinotta, Juliette Cummins

Votes: 345

29. Midnight Movies: From the Margin to the Mainstream (2005)

TV-14 | 86 min | Documentary

From 1970-1977, six low budget films shown at midnight transformed the way we make and watch films.

Director: Stuart Samuels | Stars: John Waters, Ben Barenholtz, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Alan Douglas

Votes: 1,356

30. American Grindhouse (2010)

Not Rated | 80 min | Documentary, Action, Comedy

A documentary about the history of exploitation movies, from the silent movie era to the 1970s.

Director: Elijah Drenner | Stars: Robert Forster, Eric Schaefer, Eddie Muller, John Landis

Votes: 2,043 | Gross: $0.01M

31. Best Worst Movie (2009)

Not Rated | 93 min | Documentary, Comedy, Drama

61 Metascore

A look at the making of the film Troll 2 (1990) and its journey from being crowned the "worst film of all time" to a cherished cult classic.

Director: Michael Paul Stephenson | Stars: George Hardy, Lily Hardy, Pita Ray, Micki Knox

Votes: 7,203 | Gross: $0.10M

32. American Movie (1999)

R | 107 min | Documentary, Comedy

84 Metascore

Documentary about an aspiring filmmaker's attempts to finance his dream project by finally completing the low-budget horror film he abandoned years before.

Director: Chris Smith | Stars: Mark Borchardt, Mike Schank, Tom Schimmels, Monica Borchardt

Votes: 15,680 | Gross: $1.16M

33. Video Nasties: Moral Panic, Censorship & Videotape (2010)

Not Rated | 72 min | Documentary

A documentary analyzing the furore which so-called "video nasties" caused in Britain during the 1980s.

Director: Jake West | Stars: Julian Petley, Marc Morris, Andy Nyman, Xavier Mendik

Votes: 1,074

34. Ban the Sadist Videos! (2005 Video)

R | 52 min | Documentary

An in-depth analysis of the "Video Nasty" scandal of the early 1980s in Britain.

Director: David Gregory | Stars: Chris Theobald, Norman Abbott, Barrie Gold, Bill Best

Votes: 252

35. Ban the Sadist Videos! Part 2 (2006 Video)

R | 46 min | Documentary

An investigation of UK video censorship after the video recordings act was introduced.

Director: David Gregory | Stars: Chris Theobald, Mary Whitehouse, Graham Bright, Ken Penry

Votes: 144

36. Flying Saucers Over Hollywood: The 'Plan 9' Companion (1992 Video)

111 min | Documentary

A documentary detailing the making of the infamous "Plan 9 From Outer Space," and interviews with cast members and prominent filmmakers about the film and its creator, Edward D. Wood Jr.

Director: Mark Patrick Carducci | Stars: Forrest J. Ackerman, Carl Anthony, Stephen C. Apostolof, Bobbie Bresee

Votes: 302

37. Corpse Fucking Art (1987)

60 min | Documentary

A feature length documentary following the making of horror director, Jorg Buttgerreit's movies.

Director: Jörg Buttgereit | Stars: Jörg Buttgereit, Monika M.

Votes: 91

38. Clive Barker: The Art of Horror (1992 Video)

30 min | Documentary, Short, Horror

Explores the art and mind of horror icon Clive Barker.

Director: Christopher Holland | Stars: Clive Barker, Robert Russell

Votes: 27

39. Lovecraft: Fear of the Unknown (2008)

TV-PG | 90 min | Documentary

A chronicle of the life, work and mind that created the Cthulhu mythos.

Director: Frank H. Woodward | Stars: Robin Atkin Downes, Neil Gaiman, Peter Straub, Guillermo del Toro

Votes: 1,325

40. The Meltdown Memoirs (2006 Video)

123 min | Documentary

A documentary about the making of the cult classic horror film Street Trash (1987).

Director: Roy Frumkes | Stars: Roy Frumkes, Victoria Alexander, Glenn Andreiev, Jane Arakawa

Votes: 78

41. Halloween: The Inside Story (2010 TV Movie)

90 min | Documentary

"Halloween: The Inside Story" takes a look at one of the most successful film franchises of all time as it goes behind the scenes of John Carpenter's "Halloween," the "frightfest" that ... See full summary »

Director: Phil Nobile Jr. | Stars: Rob Naughton, Rob Zombie, Anthony Masi, Jeffrey Lyons

Votes: 293

42. Machete Maidens Unleashed! (2010)

Not Rated | 84 min | Documentary, History

A fast moving odyssey into the subterranean world of the rarely explored province of Filipino genre filmmaking.

Director: Mark Hartley | Stars: Roger Corman, John Landis, Pete Tombs, Mark Holcomb

Votes: 1,455

43. Dark Dreamers (2011– )

23 min | Documentary, Biography, Talk-Show

They have created the dreams that mark our nightmares, forging an unforgettable world of dark fantasy, horror and suspense. After thirty years of accruing in-depth interviews, award-winning... See full summary »

Stars: Stanley Wiater, Larry Cohen, Joseph Stefano, Forrest J. Ackerman

Votes: 7

44. The Perfect Scary Movie (2005 TV Movie)

102 min | Documentary

A documentary looking at the various conventions and scare techniques of the horror genre.

Stars: Alexander Armstrong, Richard O'Brien, Darrell Wilkins, Jenny Agutter

Votes: 54

45. 30 Even Scarier Movie Moments (2006– )

TV-14 | 89 min | Horror

30 more scary moments are counted down.

Stars: Howard Berger, Darren Lynn Bousman, Aviva Briefel, Keith Gordon

Votes: 193

46. The 100 Scariest Movie Moments (2004– )

TV-14 | 300 min | Documentary, Comedy, Horror

Film-makers, performers, genre authorities and selected high-profile fans count down the most chilling moments in cinematic history. Not just from horror films, but from such thrillers as ... See full summary »

Stars: Keiko Agena, Krista Allen, David Arquette, Clive Barker

Votes: 903

47. Alan Yates Uncovered (2005 Video)

Not Rated | 51 min | Documentary

Documentary follows Gabriel Yorke, the actor turned Berkeley professor, who, after 25 years of silence, is finally willing to speak about his participation in the controversial film Cannibal Holocaust (1980).

Director: Sage Stallone | Stars: Sage Stallone, Carl Gabriel Yorke

Votes: 51

48. John Carpenter: Fear Is Just the Beginning... The Man and His Movies (2004 Video)

60 min | Documentary

Chronicles the work of cult director John Carpenter through interviews with him and his associates, with emphases on the earlier work.

Director: Garry S. Grant | Stars: Adrienne Barbeau, John Carpenter, Nick Castle, Alice Cooper

Votes: 129