We don't know about you, but for us here at HorrorRated no two words will bring crazed smile to our faces faster than “Creature Feature.” Sharks, giant spiders, Frankensteins, werewolves, dragons, guys in rubber suits destroying Tokyo... It doesn't get any better than a Creature Feature. Timeless classics like Jaws (1985), Godzilla (1951), King Kong (1933) and Tremors (1999) fit right in with campy, goofy, or forgotten movies like The Blob (1958), Sharknado (2013) and The Oily Maniac (1976).
The term was coined as a slang term for old, public-access TV shows that aired classic and cult horror movies, but to us it's so much more. In the broadest sense, a creature feature is any horror movie featuring a villain that isn't human. But by our standards that's not really the case, because to be a true, HorrorRated-approved Creature Feature a movie has to meet three criteria:
1. Humans might be animals, but they aren't creatures. Freddy Krueger might be undead and magic but that don't make Nightmare on Elm Street a creature feature. If they're human, your villain better turn into something horrifying like in Cat People (1982) or else be a really nasty mutant, like in Basket Case (1982).
2. It can't be a movie that jives more with a different genre. You can have creature features with aliens, like Critters (1986) but if it's more about aliens invading Earth a la Day of the Triffids (1963), then you've got an alien invasion movie.
3. The central plot needs to be about dealing with the creature, or its immediate impact on the world around it. Monsters (2011) is a feature with creatures, but Cloverfield (2008) is a creature feature. Beyond that, these movies are just... obviously of the genre. When you're watching Them! (1954) you just know you're watching a creature feature, instead of, say, a sci-fi horror like or a natural horror, like Day of the Animals (1977).
Creature features might have one monster—like The Mummy (1959, 1999)--or many, like in Destroy All Monsters (1968). It doesn't really matter, you know what you're seeing when you see it. Even no monsters, as is the case with The Legend of Boggy Creek (1972), a creature feature is a creature feature is a creature feature.
We know there are plenty more creature feature movies lurking in the depths of our library. Feel free to go looking, but be careful. Some creatures aren't meant to be disturbed. Whatever you find, please, take the time to rate it and let us know what you thought.
Released: 25 Jun 1982 |
Director: John Carpenter
Scientists in the Antarctic are confronted by a shape-shifting alien that assumes the appearance of the people it kills.
Released: 07 May 2004 |
Director: Ishirô Honda
American nuclear weapons testing results in the creation of a seemingly unstoppable, dinosaur-like beast.