Horror essay

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Horror essay

  1. 1. Formatted: Left: 2.5 cm, Right: 2.5 cm, Top: 2.5 cm, Bottom: 2.5 cm, Header distance from edge: 1.25 cm, Footer distance from edge: 1.25 cm Save The Essay Formatted: Font: 14 pt, Bold Formatted: Centered Group: The Essay BustersRoles: Gordon Wang – Project Manager Formatted: Font: 14 pt, Bold Samuel Payne – Researcher Sam Wynn – Content Creator Adam Watts – Presentation & Design 1
  2. 2. Using two examples from the genre of horror examine what a „classic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 13horror‟ film is.Examine the era of „Classic horror‟ films using two filmic Formatted: Leftexamples from the periodThe horror genre is one of the most popular genres and it could be saidwe may Comment [WU1]: The use of „we may say‟ is too informal for an academic essay.say that it has started to develop almost practically immediately with the Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Line spacing: Doubledevelopment of show business, and a free access of a wide audience to cinemas Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12and television. We can find a lot of the causes of the popularity of this genre, but itis still not so easy to explain its phenomenon, namely why it is so attractive to Comment [WU2]: This sentence did not read properly, and „unreality‟ wasviewers despite being unrealisticfor people despite all its unreality. However, it not a suitable word. Formatted: Font: 12 ptwould be incorrect a great mistake to say that horror movies are plain or even Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU3]: I felt this sentenceprimitive. Naturally, there are some movies which fulfill this stereotype,are really was too long, and by changing particular words and adding a full stop i became more concise.so stereotyped, and are unbearably plain, and absolutely thoughtless. But in my Formatted: Font: 12 ptopinion, it is simply an exclusion ofor films whichthat were created by specialists Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU4]: Writing from the first person does not fit with anwho are far from realnot experienced in moviemaking. Tand they can therefore academic essay of this type. Formatted: Font: 12 ptcreate nothing but films of low quality regardless ofits genre. Also, I‟d say that as Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU5]: Poor sentencewith any other branch of art cinema there is has its genius and a its mediocre structure and use of wording. Formatted: Font: 12 ptmajority because good films may be created only by a good crew, and the genre is Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU6]: This was a goodnot so important of less importance. place to start a new paragraph and distinguish between the introduction and the main topic of the essay. Formatted: Font: 12 ptAmong such genius of cinema I would name the crews that worked on two films Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12from the of horror genre, they are “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and “The Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12Thing”. I said crews not because I do not want to agree to disagree with those Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicwho believe that Donald Siegel and John Carpenter were outstanding Comment [WU7]: This wording is more precise.directors,directors; and highlight on the contrary I am glad that people who worked Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: 12 pton these two films were led by very such well-qualified professionals. So, it could Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt 2
  3. 3. be said we may say that “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and “The Thing” are Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicclassics of the horror genre and the best ones and some of the best examples of Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicfilm making from the horror genre. This essay will But what I would like to analyze Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptis the reason these films why they are treated as such and in which ways they are Comment [WU8]: This sentence ended too abruptly and did not read well.similar or different. Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU9]: This summing upFirstly of all, it is necessary to say point out that these two films were created at sentence is more formal and leads well into the first points.different times. “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” was created in the middle 1950s, Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12more precisely in 1956, whereas “The Thing” was created in 1982. It seems that Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicsuch a time difference should make the films completely different but, strangely Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Comment [WU10]: This was not necessary and made the sentenceenough, they have a lot of share many common aspects. That is why to begin at long-winded. Formatted: Font: 12 ptthe beginning I would like to dwell upon will investigate the similarities of both Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU11]: Grammaticallyfilms. First of all, we may say that, to a certain extent, the theme is close similar. incorrect. Formatted: Font: 12 ptBoth films focus on the problem of the invasion of human or barely just alive Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Comment [WU12]: Obviously it‟s abodies by some aliens that tends to control the personality, the hosts actions problem this statement takes away from the flow of the sentence.judgments, etc actions and judgments of the host being. In the case of “Invasion of Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12the Body Snatchers”, we deal with the creatures that “has to wait for the perfect Comment [WU13]: „etc‟ is informal and results in poor sentence structure.moment when the target is asleep), and spend the next few hours consuming and Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12taking on that form. If the hosts wake up when the process is not complete, the Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicwhole procedure is a failure”1 (LeGacey 1978:288). On the other hand, “tThe Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12tThing” needs just a few minutes to do it because “it can assimilate the host while pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicitsit‟s still conscious, against the host‟s will”2 (Landon 1993:39). Such changes are Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12probably Probably such changes are caused by the changes of time or epoch. It is Comment [WU14]: Words read better in a different order.obvious that the rhythm of life in the 1980s was much faster than inthe 1950s, Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 121 LeGacy, Arthur, Invasion of the Body Snatchers: A Metaphor for the Fifties2 Landon, Brooks, The Thing in All Its Guises: Reconsidering a Science Fiction Classic 3
  4. 4. certainly it found its expression in the perception of and it‟s expression was found Comment [WU15]: The sentence repeated itself to a degree and could be made more precise.in the idea of possible alien assault or attempts to invade human minds. Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12By the way, I think that both films express the trend that took place in the society Comment [WU16]: This beginning to the paragraph is too informal. Formatted: Font: 12 ptwhen the idea of total control of a human mind became more and more widely Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptspread spread more widely. It means that symbolically by aliens creators of thefilms used aliens symbolically tried to imply represent those powers either politicalor economical powers. that by These powers use different means aimed at thetotal control of public conscious, through the invasion of the mind of a separateindividual. It was quite actual fairly representative if we take into account if we Comment [WU17]: This sentence was long winded and poorly structured. The words work better whentake into consideration the time when both films were released., 1952 it was the rearranged and made more precise. Comment [WU18]: This phrase is a repetition.year of the beginning of the cold war when the tension between the well- Formatted: Font: 12 ptdeveloped democratic world and the communistic Soviet Union grew. and tThe Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: 12 ptgovernments of many countries, including the most democratic, had started to Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12struggle for the control of public opinion and even each particular individual. At thesame time, Also, 1982 it was a period when the cold war achieved its heightapologe and the world was on the eve of the Reagan‟s declaration of the war onthe „empire of evil‟, when the situation was greatly resembled very resembling to Comment [WU19]: Incorrect grammar.that of the early 1950s. Furthermore, the degree of surveillance grew and Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptspecialists began to speak spoke about the total control of certain organizations Comment [WU20]: Too informal.over people. In such a situation the themes people transformed in pods in the Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12horror films previously mentioned I‟ve just named look like a prophecy and Comment [WU21]: New paragraph to separate points.warning against such dangerous practice. Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12Afurther pointOne more thing that makes “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12“The Thing” quite different is the degree to which reality and unreality are Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt 4
  5. 5. combined. of combination of reality and unreality as I would call it. In my opinion,at this point “The Thing” is much more radical thing in the sense that the film is fullof fantastical elements which keep people in a state of paranoia throughout thefilm and the state of paranoia overwhelms audience and keeps people in such a Comment [WU22]: A change to the grammar makes the sentence read better.state during the whole film. On the other hand, in “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12it is quite difficult to distinguish decide whether what we see is real or unreal. Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, ItalicPersonally, when I watched both films I had a permanent doubted in the mental Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pthealth of its main characters it was quite making it difficult to say whether whatoccurred it was something really unusual and, extraordinary things that happen to Comment [WU23]: The structure of the sentence was muddled and made the point confused.people in the city. Alternatively it may have been or it was a simple hallucination, Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12illusion, or just a nightmare and only at the end does it become it becomes clear ptthat the whole city was really transformed into pods people. Whereas iIn “TheThiang” it is evident practically from the very beginning. Everyone realizes It is Comment [WU24]: Too informal and does not make the correct point.clear that when the characters act in an unreal situation they really confront some Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12aliens that intend to control their bodies and their minds.Probably, the cause of The cause of such a difference probably lies in the history Comment [WU25]: Grammatically incorrect. Formatted: Font: 12 ptof the origin of the films. For we know that “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” was Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptsignificantly influenced by proceedingpreceding films noir that tended to Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12externalised the moral conflict of the detective story. Such films inhabit “shadowworlds and hover without resolve between the supernatural and mundanerationalism. In the same sense “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and the other Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicalien takeover films… psychologically externalised the central conflict of the alien Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12invader film – they were less films about aliens than they were about alienation”3i Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12(Bisking 1983 PP.139). However the director tries to keep us the viewer in pt, Not Superscript/ Subscript3 Biskind, Peter, The Mind Managers: Invasion of the Body Snatchers and the paranoid style inAmerican Movies 5
  6. 6. suspense for a while and fills inrushes the film with rationalism and realism, butwhen the nightmare becomes the reality he widely uses film noir techniques. suchas These include shots down tight corridors, silhouettes running against Comment [WU26]: Splitting this sentence into 2 improved the flow and structurestreetlights, close ups on sweaty faces, and tilted angles. Though he does not Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12forget about classical horror films scenes scenes from classical horror films such Comment [WU27]: Restructuring the word pattern helps the sentence makeas “shots up from under the plank under which McCarthy and Winter hide, with the more sense and develop a point. Formatted: Font: 12 ptpod people crossing calmly assuring them there is nothing to fear, the wide-angled Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptshots out of the office window down onto the public square, which becomesinexplicably frightening the moment all visitors are cleared and the bustle ofeveryday chaos suddenly turns into something ordered and people startorganizing the pods to be distributed about the country”4 (Baskin 1983:141). Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12Whereas Alternatively in “The Thing” its creators used the experience of past Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italicworks in the field of horror films. and I would say this film is purer horror in the Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptsense that the psychological tension here is weakened by a certain simplification,due toas a result whichof which we should not guess whether it is the a kind ofpsychological problems of the characters or a paranormal phenomenon, for thelatter is quite obvious. Also I want Comment [WU28]: This beginning to a sentence is too informal and not an academic statement. Formatted: Font: 12 ptIt is important to add that “The Thing” is much richer in special effects, particularly Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12when we see victims of aliens who “transform into twisted versions of themselves, pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12complete with claws, spider-like limbs, teeth and lots of flailing tentacles”5 (Landon Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 121993:36). And aAgain I thinkfeel that is the result of time changes changes in timebecause in the 1980s due to the development of computer technologies and moresophisticated technical equipment, impressive special effects became an essential Comment [WU29]: This sentence needed to be split to improve flow, and ensure the point was not laboured. Formatted: Font: 12 pt4 Biskind, Peter, The Mind Managers: Invasion of the Body Snatchers and the paranoid style in Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12American Movies5 Landon, Brooks, The Thing in All Its Guises: Reconsidering a Science Fiction Classic 6
  7. 7. part of any good horror film pretending aspiring to be interesting and popular.Whereas, in the 1950s not only were technical opportunities were not so good butthe tradition of film shooting was slightly a bit different. More attention was usually Comment [WU30]: Not academic. Formatted: Font: 12 ptgiven to psychological aspects side and could only be enforced by special effects Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptwhich were not very „special‟ though in comparison with the 1980s.As for some more similarities of both “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”and “The Thing”, we may find not only theme and probably idea of the filmbut also the atmosphere of films.Further similarities of the films “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and “The Comment [WU31]: This is a good place to start a new paragraph and begin a new point.Thing” include theme, atmosphere and probably basic ideas. Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12As I have already said these films deals with the alien intrusion into pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12human life, into human body, mind and consciousness. These films also pt Formatted: Right: 2.11 cm, Line spacing: Doublemay serve as a warning about the danger of such a situation, of a totalcontrol of human consciousness when people become pods, but notthinking beings.It is reinforced by the reigning atmosphere of tension, even paranoia that Comment [WU32]: This should be included into one paragraph to give a better structure.makes us forget about the unreality of the events and deep into become Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12involved in the action. It is obvious that creators of these films had similaraims.Finally, I would like to add a few words about the way regarding the process of Formatted: Line spacing: Doublealien invasion. 7
  8. 8. It may be a bit different by its slightly different in form but the principles of suchinvasion remains similar.What I mean is the fact that cCertainly aliens in “Invasion of the Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, ItalicBody Snatchers” and “The Thing” act differently, as I have already Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12mentioned that the latter act rapidly without human will and they pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 ptcan act in any time. whileHowever the former are quite longreacted beings, they cannot attack men only if they are not asleep. Comment [WU33]: This paragraph needed to be restructured in order to read correctly. Also some of the wording did not make sense.But Nonetheless we see that there is one common principle in that aliens in these Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12this films attack from inside., I mMeaning they want to invade human bodies andminds but not their land, or property, thereforey do not threatening directly to theirphysical wealth. It seems that human inner world is much more important to forthem than anything else because they try to control the human‟s memory, and Comment [WU34]: Use of the first person is not correct in this instance.consequently their our feelings, emotions, our state of mind, perception of the Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12world, ourtheir present and ourtheir past. Moreover, they “‟have access to the pt Comment [WU35]: This is a mistake in structure and should not bebeing‟s memories, allowing them to blend in almost perfectly without being segmented. Formatted: Font: 12 ptdetected by future target hosts who may know the person who has now been Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12replaced by these horrible alien creatures‟”6ii. pt, Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12Thus, we see that unlike many other films about alien invasion “Invasion of the pt, Not Superscript/ Subscript Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italic, Not Superscript/ SubscriptBody Snatchers” and “The Thing” pay much more attention to the inner world of Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Not Superscript/ Subscriptpeople, implying the spiritual emptiness that threatens to the people of the 20th Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italic, Not Superscript/ Subscriptcentury. because iIn my opinion the aliens symbolize all those complicated Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Not Superscript/ Subscriptprocesses that took place in our society in the 20th century, and still continues to Comment [WU36]: This sentence was long and required punctuation, making the point more concise. Formatted: Font: 12 pt6 Charles, Gregory, The pod society versus the rugged individualists Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt 8
  9. 9. exist and that lead to moral degradation of people to their transformation intopods.Taking into account all that has been mentioned previously above mentioned, Ican come have reachedto the conclusion that “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” Comment [WU37]: Changing of the wording of this sentence makes it more academic and conclusive.and “The Thing” are real masterpieces of the horror genre. and wWe havecan Formatted: Font: 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12perceive them not only in the proper sense but we should also realize what the pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, Italiccreators of these films implied. In my paperthis essay I have named a lot of things Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12that are either similar or different in these films but what is the most important is pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12the fact that they both were and remain extremely popular. and the film that wouldbe better than them can be hardly imaginedIt is hard to imagine a film in this genre Comment [WU38]: This sentence is confused and grammatically incorrect and editing it makes a good summingwhich would be superior. One of the eEvidences of mythis idea is the fact that up point. Formatted: Font: 12 ptthere are numerous remakes of these films that, in its turn, tells us about the Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12actuality of the plot, themes and ideas conveyed with the help of “Invasion of the Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt, ItalicBody Snatchers” and “The Thing”. Thus,To conclude, I can say that both films Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12 pt Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12should be regarded as classics of the horror genre and their traditions should be pt, Italic Formatted: Font: (Default) Arial, 12continued but not blindly copied, that would leading to the development andprosperous future of this genre.Reference:Biskin, Peter. “The Mind Managers: Invasion of the Body Snatchers and theParanoid Style in American Movies.” In Seeing Is Believing: How HolliwoodTaught US to Stop Worrying and Love Movies. New York: Pantheon, 1983.Biskin, Peter. “The Russians Are Coming, Aren‟t They? Them! The Thing, and theExtremists from Beyond the Center.” In Seeing Is Believing: How HolliwoodTaught US to Stop Worrying and Love Movies. Pantheon; NY:, 1983.Gregory, Charles. “The Pod Society Versus the Rugged Individualists.” TheJournal of Popular Film 1. Winter 1972. 9
  10. 10. Landon, B. „The Thing in All Its Guises: Reconsidering a Science Fiction Classic.‟Chapter 2 of The Aesthetic of Ambivalence: Rethinking the Science Fiction Film inthe Age of Electronic (Re)production. Greenwood Press Westport, CT:, 1993.LeGacy, Arthur. “Invasion of the Body Snatchers: A Metaphor for the Fifties.”Literature/Film Quarterly 6.2, 1978.BibliographyBiskind, Peter, The Mind Managers: Invasion of the Body Snatchers and theparanoid style in American Movies,in Seeing is Believing: How Hollywood Taught Us Formatted: Font: Italicto Stop Worrying and Love the Fifties (New York: Pantheon, 1983) pp. 139Biskind, Peter, The Russians are Coming, Arent They? Them! The Thing, and theExtremeists from Beyond the Center, in Seeing is Believing: How Hollywood Taught Formatted: Font: ItalicUs to Stop Worrying and Love the Fifties (New York: Pantheon, 1983) pp. 123 - 36Charles, Gregory, The pod society versus the rugged individualists, The Journal of Formatted: Font: ItalicPopular Film, no. 3/4 (Winter 1972), 122-3Landon, Brooks, The Thing in All Its Guises: Reconsidering a Science FictionClassic Chapter 2 of The Aesthetics of Ambivalence: Rethinking the Science Fiction Formatted: Font: ItalicFilm in the Age of Electronic (Re)production, (Westport: Greenwood Press, 1993),pp. 27-44LeGacy, Arthur, Invasion of the Body Snatchers: A Metaphor for the FiftiesLiterature/Film Quarterly, no. 6/3 (1978), 285-91 Formatted: Font: Italic 10
  11. 11. i Bisking 1983 PP.139ii Gregory, Charles. “The Pod Society Versus the Rugged Individualists.” The Journal of Popular Film1. Winter 1972. 11

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