This is another of Jenn’s prompts which you can find here!
I have unabashedly loved horror films since I was about eleven or twelve. I was exposed to them pretty young, as I have an older sister who loved zombie films and would let me watch them with her. I’ve seen the major Romero films thanks to her!
In general, I like horror films. But I like good horror films. I like films that have a point behind the slashing and killing, a decent story, and/or compelling characters. If I can’t root for the main characters, follow the story, and I’m not interested in the background to the horror then it’s just boring!
For some examples, the movie Hush on Netflix is compelling because you can’t help but root for the protagonist and pray she’ll be safe. Get Out is a critique of the way white people still view black people as property, as well as incorporating a lot of standard horror genre details in a new and interesting way. Diary of the Dead, like many of Romero’s films, questions humanity by asking if our fascination with watching others suffer makes us undeserving of salvation.
I’m a huge fan right now of feminist-angled horror movies. With the resurgence of Jennifer’s Body and its popularity, now that the director has had a chance to explain what the film really means, there have been several more critical films. I Am the Pretty Thing that Lives in the House on Netflix is criticized a lot for being slow and drawn out but when analyzed from a feminist perspective, really it just lacks the male gaze or push. These movies are also some of my favorite horror films.
I know I already mentioned Get Out, but there’s a reason it became so popular! Horror movies that offer something new to the genre, not just body horror and slashing and gore porn, are so important. Horror is supposed to make you look inside yourself and question if you’re the monster. Frankenstein, the first horror novel, did that by forcing Victor to look at his mistakes in the form of his eloquent and lonely creation.
When I was younger, I watched horror movies just to say I had. I didn’t discern between them, and if I didn’t like one that was wildly popular in goth and horror loving communities I just assumed I missed the point. Now, I have a soft spot for some of the old classics but when it comes to new horror films if it doesn’t interest me, I don’t care anymore.