Horror filmmaker Brad Sykes’ first book, “Terror in the Desert: Dark Cinema of the Southwest” was recently published by McFarland & Company. The film reference book charts the history of the “desert terror” genre – films like The Sadist, Duel, Near Dark, White of the Eye, The Brave, Dark Blood and many more, from the silent film era till today.
Set in the American Southwest, “desert terror” films efforts combine elements from the horror, film noir, and road movies to tell stories of isolation and violence. For more than half a century, these diverse and troubling films have eluded both proper classification and subsequent critical or cultural analysis. Highlighting pioneering filmmakers and bizarre production stories, Sykes traces the genre’s origins and development, from cult exploitation (The Hills Have Eyes, The Hitcher) and crowd-pleasing franchises (Tremors, From Dusk Till Dawn) to quirky auteurist fare (Natural Born Killers, Lost Highway) to more recent releases (Bone Tomahawk and Nocturnal Animals). Over a hundred rare stills and promotional materials accompany this one of a kind trip to the outer reaches of cinematic craziness.
“Terror in the Desert” is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Target, Walmart, and at bookstores everywhere.