So many modern horror movies utilize techniques like flashy editing, and special effects to draw in the audience. In some cases these gimmicks are used to mask the horrible performances from two bit actors hired to play the leading roles. It wasn’t always so, and there was a time when horror movies were graced with the presence of five invaluable legends who would forever make their mark on the genre’s history.

Boris Karloff

His performance in Frankenstein is one that holds up today, and will never be topped any time in the near or distant future. Karloff was one of the few actors who could understand how to translate these iconic characters into flawed people we could almost feel sympathy for in some regards.

Bela Lugosi

There is a certain timelessness to Lugosi’s portrayal of the count, and its amazing how despite the numerous Dracula movies we see, in the back of our minds we all still consider Lugosi to be the real deal. Much like Vincent Price, his charisma is so hypnotic that we tend to forget he is pure evil.

Lon Chaney

So many people underestimate Chaney’s commitment to character, and few never realize just how devoted he was both mentally and physically. Countless hours were spent in the makeup chair using primitive ideas like fishhooks to pull his face back, a technique you would be hard pressed to see an actor endure today.

Christopher Lee

While Bela Lugosi remains the most charismatic version of Dracula we’ve been exposed to, Christopher Lee made the count absolutely terrifying. Lee had an indomitable presence on screen, and to this day remains the single most horrific interpretation of Dracula we will ever see.

There’s no denying these actors impact on the horror genre, and its comforting to see so many people still watching their films today. In a time where horror movies have become so over-saturated with gore, violence, and overall shock, its important to remember just how valuable a good actor is to the story thats trying to be told.

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