Opinion: Why I Love The Horror Genre

In our day and age, movies have become a huge thing; massive movie budgets, triple-A actors, Hollywood fame, gold trophies and awards, and oh so much more. And in that mix is the ever growing horror movie genre, which has recently gained a lot of traction.

Whenever I tell people that horror movies are my favorite genre, they always give me that “Are you insane??” look. It’s hilarious to see on my part, but it’s not to be unexpected though. Why would someone ever want to be scared? Unable to sleep at night? Let me share with you my thoughts: why horror movies are my favorite movies.

 

Now, horror wasn’t my favorite thing in the world. I first experienced this when I was 3, with the first Chucky movie. On my child self, that definitely left a traumatic mark. I’m still scared of dolls and puppets! It wasn’t until I was late into my teens that I truly started to love horror movies.

It wasn’t until I saw The Grudge. Don’t get me wrong, this movie scared the living hell out of me. But it’s exactly that feeling that makes me enjoy them. That rush of adrenaline and fear that makes your heart beat faster. It’s a rush! And knowing it’s a movie gives me the reassurance that I’m not in any true danger.

 

I understand this isn’t for everyone, but that’s part of the reason I love horror. Similar to why people like riding roller coasters or get excited from watching your favorite team score a touchdown. That sense of excitement and mix of emotions; sitting on the edge of your seat while the hairs on the back of your neck stand up!

But there’s other reasons to watch a horror movie! Maybe you’re with a group and you all want to get scared together? Perhaps you want to prove to your friends how you held your stance against the year’s scariest movie? Or maybe you just tried the cliche and want your date to cling to you for safety? Oftentimes people watch horror movies for just the horror itself and not for the movie, akin to going to a haunted house.

And what makes a good horror movie to me? When it leaves a lasting effect. Am I scared to go to sleep? Do I dare turn off the lights?  Do I want to close my eyes while I take a shower? When it leaves a lasting effect on me, I feel like that horror movie has done its job and has won me over. And this in turn makes me feel satisfied. The hour and a half I took out of my day was worthwhile and my money was well spent.

There are bad horror movies though. There might be cheap thrills, bad atmospheres, or the story might just suck. The entirety of the Paranormal Activity series relies on cheesy jump scares with a bad movie plot. Without a creepy tone or well placed scares, the movie doesn’t feel like an effective horror movie.

Movies like Sinister and The Conjuring give you a sense of dread and fright while you watch, making them better horror movies to experience. They engross you into their cinematic world and pull you in. So when that frightening moment does come along, it feels earned and effective.

That’s essentially why I love horror movies. The thrill of the scares, the creepy atmospheres, and that lasting effect on me. I’m very excited for the slew of horror movies coming out this year too: from Lights Out and The Purge: Election Year to The Conjuring 2 and Rings.

Do you like horror movies or do you hate them? Leave a comment below! For more movie goodness come back here to Cinemaniacs!

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