AliensDemonsVillainsVictimsDamsel-in-distressGroup of A familyBlood
3. American Horror Story (2011)
4. Blood is extremely common in horror movies, as they aim to
tap into your fears, including anatural fear of being brutally hurt
or even killed. The fact that bloodied tools are present
impliessomeone has already been hurt in a sadistic way, fitting in
with the horror theme perfectly.
5. Children are a common occurrence is recent horrors. Their
natural innocence provides a distinct contrast tohorror films-
nobody expects a child to be evil. Using a negative image is a way
of connoting their dark side,which everyone has deep inside.
Vintage photographs often appear in horror films because sometimes
themisfortune is caused by someone from the past, or they
experienced it themselves.
6. Broken glass is a common connotation for carelessness,
somebody has accidently knocked oversomething , most probably
whilst they were in a hurry i.e. running away from
danger.Alternatively, broken glass can occur out of anger, if
someone smashes it. Anger is seen as atrigger for wrong-doing,
hence it fits in with the horror theme.
7. Seeing body parts of unusual objects/animals in jars is more
uncommon in modern-day horrorshowever they still successfully act
as a horror stereotype. This is due to the disturbing mind-setone
must have to present creepy things in this way.
8. This shows a title dissolving perhaps? The idea that it is
dissolving gives the impression thatchemicals are being used.
Chemicals can cause serious damage, hence they are threatening
andintimidating, perfect for a horror.
9. Chains are particularly threatening; they can connote being
tied up or even hung. Therefore, dueto their menacing connotations
, they often fit in to horror films well. The noise of their
rattlingalso creates an eerie atmosphere, like something sinister
is approaching or taking place.
10. This shot is a particularly disturbing one- it shows
someone under some plastic, however we areunsure as to the
circumstances. The person could be dead or being held against their
will. Thecould have been suffocated using the plastic. All of the
previous make it a shot suitably matchedto a horror film.
11. Often in horror films, you see body parts of people, yet
not the rest of them. In this particularshot, you can only see
their hands, you cant decipher their expression to see if they are
a threator not. Therefore, we must automatically assume they are,
making the thought of coming acrossthem very scary.
12. It appears this is the person in the previous shot, holding
on to a pair of clippers. Once again, youcant see their face. The
fact that they are in possession of a weapon immediately makes
themseem menacing, ideal for a horror.
13. Skeletons are often found in horrors because people tend to
be scared of the dead or of dying. The fact thatthis has clearly
happened to someone, and theyve only left behind a skeleton,
implies whatever locationyoure at is a scary one. There is also a
couple of reflections shown. Mirrors are often used in horrors
becausethey increase the number of people you can see, ultimately
making them seem like more of a threat becauseyou cant identify
which one is real.
14. This shot encompasses all things horror: fire, broken
glass, children, coffins. All of these aspectsare scary- fire and
broken glass can be dangerous and harmful, whilst coffins connote
death andthe childs innocence creates a strong contrast.
15. Insidious (2010)
16. The blood red colour chosen for the titles is stereotypical
of a horror. Blood is nearly alwaysincluded in this genre, so to
see it used for the titles is to be expected and sets the theme for
17. As I mentioned in the American Horror Story shots, children
are often shown in horror filmsbecause their innocence provides a
contrast against evil. Furthermore, children are morevulnerable, so
using them as victims in horrors only serves to make the horror
18. Silhouettes can sometimes be found in horrors because they
create a feeling of unease. Itappears as though the victims are
19. Like I mentioned earlier, certain body parts can often be
made visible, without including the restof the body. By using a
face, it allows the audience to see the expressions, so they are
able toidentify sinister characters. Candles are often used to
highlight these particular parts.
20. Dark shadows and silhouettes imply there is an evil
presence watching or intimidating thecharacters. This idea is
extremely alarming, therefore the audience feel disturbed, just
theimpression horrors aim to achieve.
21. Reflections are regularly used in horror films because they
created the feeling of being watchedor of there being multiple
threats. The reflection in this shot is showing an ominous
face,creating a feeling of unease, perfect for a horror.
22. A lot of horror take place in old houses, so grandfather
clocks represent this. The chiming of theclocks also creates
tension in the atmosphere.
23. Footprints automatically have the connotation of an
intruder. Intruders are often theperpetrators in horror films, so
seeing footprints immediately makes one suspicious.
24. A Nightmare On Elm Street(1984)
25. Tools are often shown in horror films because they can be
go-to weapons for the attackers andeven for the victims as a form
26. Here you can see the attackers weapon of choice. The choice
of weapon can affect the wholefilm- they could be a slasher,
arsonist etc. Therefore it is important for horror films to show
theweapons being used.
27. Dark corridors or alleyways are regularly used in horror
films because the darkness and opennessmake them feel intimidating-
you can barely see and you have nowhere to hide.
28. The fact that a mask is being worn fits in perfectly with
the genre. Masks can be made to lookscary, creepy, disturbing etc.,
therefore they can always be made to fit in with the theme of
thefilm and successfully scare you. Being able to see the eyes
peeping out of the mask makes themstand out and look a lot more
piercing. This makes the predator look a lot more sinister.
29. Fire is a common occurrence in horrors because it is so
dangerous to be around. Therefore firecreates a feeling of unease.
It can also connote anger because of the colouring, representing
theattackers anger or rage which is causing them to turn evil.
30. By showing the victim actually being attacked, you get a
sense of the emotions- fear, dread,hatred- theyre experiencing,
putting the audience in their shoes and making the audience
31. Here you can see a cross. Religious symbols- particularly
crosses are used in horrors becausesome believe they keep evil at
bay. Therefore they are used as a defensive weapon by the
32. Decidedly, based on my research, the most common
ingredients for any horror areblood, fire , silhouettes and
close-ups. In modern day horrors there are also aconsiderable
number of children included. After performing my research, I
havedecided I will aim to include blood, shadows or silhouettes,
footprints and reflectionsin my film opening because I feel these
ingredients make any film universallyrecognisable as a horror. I
also feel they are the most effective at creating an
eerieatmosphere- I want the audience to feel on-edge and uneasy
from the get-go. I mayalso choose to include candles because I wont
be able to include fire, as its toodangerous, plus the flickering
lights help set the scene.