Horror movies are considered the easiest and cheapest way to break into a seemingly impenetrable business. Stars are generally not required and they are easier films to produce and distribute. Over half of the top 20 most profitable films of all time are horror movies. Paranormal Activity posted a return of over 6500% on its $15000 investment.
So what exactly is this genre? Technically horror is related to fantasy films. Specifically dark fantasy. Horror deals with the dark aspects of humanity like death, loss, individuality, alliance between god and man and machine and man. Fears not often discussed openly.
Stephen King famously described the three levels of horror:
This is the highest form of horror which creates the greatest emotion of fear. It manifests in the mind of the viewer by not seeing something and by imagining what’s there. Consider the Blair Witch Project which contains many scary scenes of anticipation and dread without actually showing anything. Sound montages are used so the audience can create what it fears most.
Fear is a mid level horror and creates an emotional response by showing something tangible. Real physical scares.
Reality is the lowest level of horror. This is gross out, gore-filled, blood fest gimmickry. It’s the most lifelike and childish horror. Pure shock value.
WHY DO AUDIENCES LOVE TO BE SCARED?
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