Fear has always been a mystery for humans. What causes fear and why are we so interested in this? Fear is a negative sensation from a perceived threat. It is hardwired in our brain with the "Fight or Flight" response. Fear has been within the human condition as long as any other emotion.
This is a really odd reference but I like it anyway.
As much as we claim we hate being scared we still go to the movies to watch these heart wrenching films. It may be because of our morbid fascination to these things, our curiosity to the grotesque and the unknown. Stephen King explained that we love horror movies because it gives into our cruel impulsions.
We know why we find horror movies interesting but why are they scary to begin with? What makes a guy in a rubber suit scary or someone's arm being ripped off a hair raising experience? Instead of searching the internet for an answer I am going to try my best with my own explanation. Horror movies show us something that we usually do not see everyday, and sometimes shows us things we never want to see. The idea that a creature can enter your house at night while you sleep to drain all of your blood is terrifying. However even though the emotional side of our brain is paralyzed with fear our logical side can ease our mind with a rational explanation that vampires and werewolves do not ex
ist. That is why I think the more recent horror films do a better job with causing us fear. Movies like Hostel are scary because of a strong chance of them happening...well stronger chance than zombies knocking on your door for tea and cerebellum. What is scarier, a creature that can not physically survive in the real world due to scientific reasons or getting kidnapped in a foreign country then tortured to death?
Travel the world they said...
Just like anything else in our world, horror movies have evolved in order to keep up with viewers today. Our concept of fear has changed. Or maybe we have just become desensitized by traditional horror due to its over use. I think a crucial element of horror is the shock factor of some of the scenes, and the frankenstein monster can only be created only a certain amount of times before it becomes stale. As I stated earlier these new grotesque horror movies like Hostel or Saw show the viewers what they normally do not see, people getting tortured in sick ways. Thanks to special effects we can see a more realistic and brutal gore scene now without hiding in shadows and claymation.
Horror movies scare me for more than one reason, besides me being easily scared the future of horror movies can take an interesting turn. If what I said is true about the desensitization of fear than in the future we will see movies that will make Saw look like Nosferatu.
Now that's a scary thought.