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The Horror Genre Essay

928 words - 4 pages

The Horror Genre

The Horror Genre has been very popular ever since Etienne Robertson,
the pioneer of film horror, made the first film. The film
'Phantasmagoria' was more of a theatre shadow play. It was made during
the French revolution.

Since then, thousands of Horror films have been made. Many
developments have been used in newer films such as special effects and
3-D animation. A genre is formed when a type of film has certain
elements that become essential to that type of film. These elements
are sometimes called "generic conventions". Around these large genres
sub-genres have evolved such as supernatural and sci-fi horror films
like 'The Fly' and 'Mary Shelley's Frankenstein' In Supernatural films
the killer is sometimes not human or there are ghosts in it. Sci-Fi
films are usually set in the future and are sometimes on another
planet. and psycho-slasher horror such as 'Scream' and 'The Texas
Chainsaw Massacre'. Psycho-Slasher horror is very gory. 'The Texas
Chainsaw Massacre' was described by Harper's Magazine as 'a vile piece
of sick crap'.

These films are all different but have similar basic conventions such
as the music and camerawork, which is chilling and suspenseful. The
characters in the films have similar characteristics. The victim is
usually female, pretty, stupid and blonde, suggesting innocence and
purity, also they are still virgins. The female virgin always escapes
the killer in horror films it's like if they aren't a virgin they are
impure and therefore not immune. The killer, usually a white male,
sometimes has a mental disorder and access to an arsenal of weapons
and a big truck, plus they are never successful in their attempts to
slay the victim. The last stereotypical character is the detective, if
the re is one in the film. They are dressed in a long beige coat and a
hat, they smoke a lot of cigarettes and are discreet and smooth. Not
all modern films have detectives but older films like 'Psycho' and
'The Shining' have them.

In some films there is Pathos created for the killer because of his
mental state. Sometimes the killer's are out for revenge or they are
insane. In 'The Fly' the main character Seth undergoes a genetic
change and loses his mind, this makes the viewer feel sorry for him.

...

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