Starter Draw on your whiteboards a targetaudience profile of a typical viewer ofhorror films Think about Demographics andPsychographics
Psychological Theory- TheUncanny This was developed by Sigmund Freud, founder ofPsychodynamic theory (unconscious drives, internalconflicts from childhood etc.) His theory of the Uncanny can help explain whysome people are so attracted to the horror genre The theory states that cognitive dissonance occurswhen something is familiar and foreign at the sametime. For example, people are attracted to paranormalfilms because Ghosts are similar to the human form,yet look frightening. This would be perceived as beinguncomfortably unfamiliar
Feminist Theory- SadisticVoyeurism This was developed by feminist film theoristLaura Mulvey (the male gaze etc.) Her theory of sadistic voyeurism can alsoexplain why some people are attracted to thehorror genre. This is when a weaker female character isperforming a daily, personal or intimate task(e.g getting changed or having sex) where astrong male character abuses her privacy in asadistic way (think the shower scene in thefilm, Psycho)
Social/Relationship Theory-Snuggle Theory This suggests that people watch horror filmsto resort back to their traditional gender roleswhen a male watches the film with thefemale. When a frightening scene occurs the maletakes on the traditional and cultural role of amale who is supportive and protective overthe scared female. This can result in a stronger bond betweenthe couple.
Task Each group must have a differenttheory. Create a poster which illustrates yourtheory Use examples of films in your Posterwhere appropriate
Finally… Present your poster to the class andcopy down the notes of yourclassmates Now write down your own theory onwhy people watch horror films.