The horror genre shouldn’t be looked down on


The horror genre has been famous for iconic scenes from Carrie getting covered in pig’s blood to the Things chest defibrillation scene. Even if you aren’t a huge fan of the scary scenes, it’s hard to ignore the popularity of the genre in the film industry. From talentless, nonsensical, cheap slasher films to carefully stitched, thought-provoking thrillers, they’ve made countless marks on the business. The genre can be for newcomer directors or experienced, well-known ones; they can establish themselves by using their passion as a filmmaker. 

Horror is often looked down on in the industry as having little budget, no talent, and little equipment. But, the Blair Witch Project had a budget of 60,000 dollars and raked in about 248 million dollars and Get Out had a budget of 4.8 million and made 255 million dollars. Having a low budget lets these directors take different routes with shooting scenes, such as in The Evil Dead  1981, there is a scene where the camera shakes. It was shot from a camera bolted to a wooden plank that a cameraman took running in the woods. 

Are you a fan of Steven Spielberg? He got his start by actually directing the movie Jaws and is now credited by pioneering what we see now from Hollywood. Peter Jackson, director from the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings, once was a director for the horror movies Bad Taste and Braindead. Horror is an amazing way to make a statement in the business. 

Not only do directors get their start from horror films but actors do as well. Because of the small budget and little recognition, it is unlikely to hire popular actors and actresses. Even well-known actress Jennifer Aniston had to act in the movie Leprechaun. Johnny Depp starred in the small budget Nightmare on Elm Street in one of the most famous horror scenes where he sucked into his bed only to have blood spewed back up at the ceiling. 

Horror movies aren’t only a way to be established in the industry, but it’s also a creative way to express messages in literary devices and ask questions about ourselves that we aren’t comfortable asking in day-to-day life. For example, Psycho questioned gender in a time where it wasn’t widely accepted. Additionally, the movie Raw has a lot of symbolism tied in with the plot, asking uncomfortable questions about coming of age. 

It’s also very hard to write a bad horror film; there are all different types of horror movies to enjoy. Horror movies can be purely comedic such as Scary Movie and Happy Death Day, or they can be just movies for cheap thrills like Texas Chainsaw or Paranormal Activity. It’s easy to write in some jump scares, but movies such as The Shining or Rosemary’s baby give a chilling, eerie vibe from just unsettling scenery and audio cues.

There’s all sorts of brilliance in the genre, and its hard to believe that horror is the bottom of the barrel for the industry. The business of the genre is booming from its most recent hits like It in 2017 or Us in 2019, and I can’t wait for the horror genre to show those who doubt it what it’s really made of.