Sunday, March 8, 2009

What defines horror?

Sorry about the lack of post yesterday and the jarbled mess of a layout that was the Barbie issue. Blogger has been acting quite strange for me the past week or so, I re-vamped my internet and all is well! (or so it seems). 

So this past weekend I finally got to the theater to see the badass Liam Neeson in his new action/thriller TAKEN. First, let me tell you, that this film was UNFREAKINGBELIEVEABLE.  I'm prone to loving Neeson's work to begin with, but according to good ol' wikipedia, he kills 37 and injures 13.  His one liners were absolutely brilliant, and he really pulled at my heartstrings as a caring father.  The fire in his eyes was extremely apparent as he tore down anyone and anything preventing him from finding his daughter.  He used wit, strength, and very wonderful tactics to ultimately get what he came for.

But Brittney-Jade, this has NOTHING to do about women...actually it does.  The film is about a father, protecting his daughter. Now, the film wasn't labeled as a horror, but it frightened me a lot.  There's something about the unknown of new places and unfamiliar surroundings that have a bit of curiosity and a bit of fear within it.  The daughter is going away with a friend overseas to Paris without any sort of supervision.  That in itself is extremely frightening to me. I could never even think about letting my seventeen year old daughter alone in a foreign land. (that is, if i had a 17 year old daughter...) Girls being by themselves already sets up a combination for vulnerability, as well as a good kick of horror.

So that brings me to my point of this blog, what defines horror? TAKEN is defined as a thriller, when it scares me more than films like The Blair Witch Project which is categorized as a horror film.  Things can be frightening without monsters, slashers, ghosts, curses, or serial killers.  Sometimes, the scariest things are those that we know can be possible, the things that our mothers warned us about.  The film The Strangers {which I personally didn't enjoy, but that's not the point} was considered a horror film because strange people were breaking in their house to kill those inside.  However TAKEN portrays two girls being kidnapped and thrown into the trafficking ring of Europe.  Both situations are extremely terrifying, and both are extremely real.  I cannot give an answer that explains what defines horror, but I can say that horror exists in all realms of our imagination as well as reality.

2 comment(s):

Anonymous said...

Isn't that what's so great about horror. It's different for everybody. What scares one person may not for another so we are treated to all kinds of horror and terror.

Me, I'm scared by ghosts. If I could walk up dark stairs backwards all the time I probably would. HAHA!

Anonymous said...

I agree that what defines horror is different for everyone. For me I find the Saw franchise and its cohorts should be defined under Torture Porn rather than horror. I prefer the more supernatural themes within the horror genre. However I hear what your saying in that the line between horror and thriller is definitely blurred. Keep up the great posts, I love the concept you are writing about 'women in horror'.


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