Hell on earth

From the Roman games to American travelling carnivals, freakshows - human anomalies presented for spectacle - have flourished throughout recorded history.The birth of the movies provided a further outlet for these displays, which in turn led to a peculiar strain of bizarre cinema: Freak film.

Inside Teradome is a comprehensive, fully illustrated guide to the roots and development of this fascinating, often disturbing cinematic genre. Including:

A brief history of teratology; freaks in myth and medicine. The history of freakshows, origins of cinema. Influence of sideshows on cinema. Use of human anomalies in cinema. Freaks and geeks Bizarre cinema: mutilation and other fetishes. Illustrated filmography; index. From the pioneering illusions of Georges Melies and the Expressionist distortions of Dr Caligari, the surgical horrors of Mad Love and real-life grotesqueries of Tod Brownning's Freaks, to the modern nightmare visions of Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Eraserhead, and Santa Sangre, Inside Teradome reveals a twisted thread of voyeuristic sickness running not only thorugh cinema, but through the society of which it has always been the most telling barometer.