Editorials,  Movies/Entertainment

Scary Movies: Is There Anything That Isn't Trite These Days?

I’m not one for scary movies.  Its not that I am afraid to see them, its just that they bore me.  They seem even more predictable than a romantic comedy.  Usually, I think I have a good “Spider Sense” when it comes to those types of films.  When I see a trailer, about 95% of the time, I can say with certainty, “Well that’s gonna suck”…and it does.  After that, I am also usually on par with how film does at the box office as well.  Aside from the trailers (whose ‘magic’ I wrote about in a recent post), the #1 indicator which almost confirms that the movie will bomb are the posters.  Its a good way to see things like production value or the premise played out in one shot.  So, when it comes to the horror film genre as a whole, I simply pass on the lot of it.  (I am trying to do the same for the romantic comedies but am less successful thanks in part to my fiance:P)

But to be fair, just like any movie out there, there are some surprises and somethings I do end up liking.  I will admit after seeing the poster for Twilight, I thought it would absolutely fail.  I was sooo wrong.  I really liked it and I guess no matter what previous track records have yielded, the old adage of  “You can’t judge a book by its cover” is always a good way to remember you can’t always tell what will win you over.

I think that since most horror productions have the same premise, tweaking it slightly from film to film will not generate enough of a difference to create stand-outs on the pack or become classics.  So studios try different formulas and most just go unnoticed or overlooked.  I’m not saying they can’t be entertaining or succeed in scaring the audience (in that case the movie achieved their goal I guess) but if you’re not interested in the film or genre as a whole its tough to really get and keep an audience.

Writers probably have conversations like this…”Oh, oh, I think I’ve got it this time.  Picture this, instead of 1 girl running from a killer, it will be two girls.  Like it?  <another writer adds>  “Oh, how about instead of two girls, maybe 1 girl but the killer has 2 axes, or maybe…just throwing it out here…2 killers? Like it??…<room cheers>  <later, audience groans>

Certain movies try to correlate with a particular season, or time of year.  You usually get action in the summer,  then comedies, horror or dramas in the fall, some action or romantic comedies (largely Christmas related) around the end of the year, then a few more rom-coms before winter is over and a split action and rom-coms just as Spring is in full gear.  Funny how you wouldn’t expect it but, to me, horror films can come up at any time really.  Guess Hollywood has found that people are up for a scare just as much as a laugh or an explosion.  Once there was a time when horror flicks limited themselves to who could out “Boo” the audience at Halloween, its now common to have them interspersed amongst others designed specifically for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and the one day historically made for Action, 4th of July.

So although I’m bored by the genre, I do sometimes look for a scare.  After writing all of the above, I guess I find myself a hypocrite by calling zombie films my guilty pleasure (really nothing new there except maybe geographical location).  Night of the Living Dead, the remake of Dawn of the Dead and Shaun of the Dead are like my holy trinity of “Zom” standards.  I’m not too interested in the ‘menacing (insert garden/power tool here) killer’, nor do I go for many ghost films or haunted houses.  I did see the trailer for The Haunting in Connecticut and it peaked my interest.  I may take a chance on it, but see for yourself…

Looks like it may be ‘The Others’ mixed with ‘The Amityville Horror’, but all I’ll say is that I’m interested but not moved.  On a personal note, my fiance and I just moved into a new house but nothing spooky like this has happened to us…yet:P.  I think this film could be good but then again the trailer could be working its voodoo magic. (again, see previous post – shameless self-promotion?…check)