An American Werewolf in London (John Landis, 1981). The Howling (Joe
Dante, 1981). Cat People (Paul Schrader, 1982). Altered States (Ken Russell, 1980). A short-lived but intense
cultural moment if you were 13 or 14 until – this is a guess but also entirely plausible
– the John Landis-directed clip for Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” ruined it. Slasher movies, with little of the comedy and sexual vulnerability of metamorphosis horrors, were no real substitute.