People love a good scare. The sudden adrenaline rush and the simulated fear, actually give a sense of excitement. Directors, writers and producers around the world always test their abilities to become innovative in this genre. Even some poorly made horror movies can still give a few jolt of surprises and some chuckle. Well made films are even better and here are reasons what horror films are scary:
- Being extreme: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Friday the 13th are terrifying classics due to their extreme depictions. They feature murderous villains who intent on inflicting as much suffering and pain as possible. Although these films could be criticized for being violent and non-educating, murder is a daily fact in our society. Getting dismembered by chainsaw is definitely more gruesome than being stabbed or choked. These filmmakers really take advantage the extreme elements made possible through the horror genre. The twisted villains and the bloody survival struggle can be used to stretch viewer’s imagination, adding something new with each film. A good horror film will make it as if something will happen the next second.
- Terrifying soundtrack and sound effects: Good audio elements are a major must for good horror films. Filmmakers need to fully optimize the use of sound if they want to create a successful horror film. Even fairly predictable sound effects are still able to build up the suspense and viewers will wonder when the next jumpscare will happen. Listening to the terrifying sound is part of the fun and filmmakers should be fully aware of that. Soothing sound effects can be used to give people a false sense of relief, when it fact, a real scare is about to happen very soon. Good sound effects can heighten the scare factor or manipulate the emotion of viewer’s to achieve certain goals.
- Unexplained factors: It’s a real fact that we are fearful of things we don’t understand. It can be harmless or potentially deadly. While people generally accept that death inevitable, they are fearful of painful and gruesome death. Mysteries associated with possession, occults and ghosts are unexplained, while causing potential harms. It is something that many directors would love to exploit and they can do it very effectively.
- It’s supposedly true: Many horror films are said to be based on a true story and often, it’s officially claimed by the filmmaker. Classic examples are The Exorcist, The Conjuring and Amityville Horror. It’s also a trick that’s widely used. Just because a film is said to be based on a true story, it doesn’t mean that the storyline in the film is highly dramatized and significantly modified to some extent. However, uninformed audience will think that they see truly happened in the past. All the terror, pain and suffering were supposedly real.
- It’s lost and found: Blair Witch Project is an influential film in the horror genre and it started the popularity of “found footage” style. Although, the style was originally used by Cannibal Holocaust in early 1980’s, the new sub-genre is still quite convincing today. The amateur-looking shots and jerky camera movements actually add a sense of realism that the footage is taken by ordinary people who will soon encounter terror or even death.