By Stuart Lee

Australian author Emma Westwood has released a new book examining the success of the monster movie genre, featuring in depth interviews with directors including John Carpenter, Roger Corman and Greg McLean.

Westwood told INSIDEFILM about her experiences researching the book, in particular speaking with some of the legendary directors, and some new ones, that have helped define the genre for moviegoers.

"A common theme was that a love of monsters comes from the wonder of looking through a child’s eyes. John Carpenter and Larry Cohen [director of It’s Alive] talked about sneaking out late at night and seeing Them or Creature From the Black Lagoon,” she said.

“Bong Joon-ho, who did The Host, hammered home the fact that you have to have a fabulous monster but also the human story that goes along with it. There’s lots of films that don’t have that element that you enjoy for the cheese factor, but to make a truly great film you need great character interplay.”

She said that Australian director Greg McLean, who created Wolf Creek and Rogue, had an interesting theory about his first feature.

"Greg McLean poses an argument that a monster can be a human, and therefore he classed Wolf Creek as a monster film,” she said.

Monster Movies chronicles the history of monsters on the big screen since 1922 and is Emma Westwood’s first book for publishers Pocket Essentials.

For more information about the book or the author, see: www.pocketessentials.co.uk/film/monstermovies

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