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Martin Scorsese revealed his 5 favorite horror films from the legendary Hammer Films



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Martin Scorsese is passionate about cinema as a whole. These are your five favorite horror films from this iconic production company.

Martin Scorsese was known for his gangster films, but his filmography shows that he is much more than that genre – “Taxi Driver” (1976), “the wolf of Wall Street” (2013), “The Irishman” (2019), “Shutter Island” (2010), “Flower Moon Assassins” (2023), “The Departed – Entre Enimigos” (2006), “Hugo’s Invention” (2011), “The Age of Innocence” (1993), “Silence” (2016), among many others.

Throughout his career he only managed to win one of the most important awards in the film industry – he won in the Best Director category with “The Departed – Between Enemies”.

When talking about personal tastes, there is one genre that stands out above the rest – horror. Of all the films in this genre, there is one production company that made some of Martin Scorsese’s favorite horror films – “the films of Hammer Film Productions were visually darker, a little more disturbing, elegant but extremely unnerving, There seemed to be a great comfort with evil and morbidity in these films and a great sexual charge. These films meant a lot to us. There was so much happening around the world in cinema at the time, and these films, along with Corman’s Poe cycle and Mario Bava’s films from Italy, gave the feeling that things were changing and evolving too.”

Founded in the 30s of the last century, the Hammer Film Productions became known for its gothic style, which completely influenced the genre.. In this sense, these are the films from the production company that Martin Scorsese considers his favorites.


With an impressive 96% rating on Rotten Tomaotes, this classic horror starring Christopher Lee (“Lord of the Rings“), is one of the best films of its kind. Chris Bennion, from Times (UK)he writes, “the music is shrill, the protagonists’ screams are even shriller and the dialogue is satisfyingly banal.”

For those who haven’t seen the film, the story follows “Duc de Richleau (Christopher Lee) and his friend Rex Van Ryn (Leon Greene), who decide to visit Simon Aron (Patrick Mower), Duc suspects something is wrong. Simon is hosting 13 people and all of them are supposedly astronomy enthusiasts. When Duc finds live chickens in the closet, he discovers that Simon is practicing black magic and tries to stop Simon from finishing his satanic ritual.”


A horror film that follows true events. This alone makes the work even more frightening. The film follows investigation of the British East India Company about the Thuggee strangler cult in the 1830s. And who are the Thugee? They were a group of killers who pretended to be guides and then took their victims to hidden locations, stealing their belongings and, finally, strangling the “chosen ones”.

THE MUMMY (1959)

It’s not as lively as the film starring Brendan Fraser. But it caught the interest of Martin Scorsese. The premise is also identical – “British archaeologists discover the tomb of an Egyptian princess who died four thousand years ago. Accidentally, one of them brings back to life the guardian of the tomb, Kharis, who receives help from an Egyptian in his mission to kill the desecrators of the tomb”, can be read in the official synopsis.

With a 91% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, Jennie Kermode from Eye for Filmhighlights Christopher Lee’s performance, “it’s Lee’s performance that gives the film its soul.”


More than a horror film, it is a pioneering film in the image that was created around vampires, with a certain sexual connotation. Sean Axmaker of Stream on Demandwrites, “this is the first film to truly explore the erotic appeal of vampires: Dracula seduces Mina and Lucy like a demon who turns good to the dark side through sex, more suggestive than explicit, but bold for the year 1958.”

The official synopsis reads, “in a search for his friend Missing Jonathan Harker (John Van Eyssen), vampire hunter Dr. Van Helsing (Peter Cushing) is taken to Count Dracula’s (Christopher Lee) castle. Upon arrival, Van Helsing finds Harker in an authentic undead state in Dracula’s crypt and discovers that the count’s next target is Harker’s fiancée, Lucy Holmwood (Carol Marsh). With the help of her brother, Arthur (Michael Gough), Van Helsing fights to protect Lucy and put an end to Count Dracula’s parasitic reign of terror.”


The winning team doesn’t move, and Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing star in another Hammer Films horror classic. According to the official synopsis, “in the city of Yandorf several murders are taking place and the victims are turned into stone. A group of residents begins an investigation to find the killer, without suspecting that they are facing the wrath of a strange creature.”

Grant Watsonof Fiction Machine, writes, “To a large extent, The Gorgon represents the usual Hammer horror work: there’s a European village, a ruined castle nearby, murders in the night, and villagers wary of strangers.”

Did you know these films? Do you agree with Martin Scorsese?

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