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enre Research – Psychological Horro Connor O’Brien

Psychological Horror Genre Research

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Genre Research Psychological HorrorConnor OBrien

Atmospheric and suspense to keep viewers on the edge of their seats.Some areas of silence to create a sense of unknown.Screams and loud noises. This is stereotypical of a psychological horror film.


Show fear and emotional instability to build tension amongst viewers.A disturbed, or tormented individual is the main antagonistCommon or universal psychological vulnerabilities and fears exposed by the character create discomfort in the viewer.


Camera ShotsHigh AngleClose upUsed to make the figure or object that is being looked down on seem completely powerless and vulnerable.

used to highlight the characters emotional expressions. It could also be used to capture detail, i.e. to show injury, fear etc.Tracking shot

used effectively to connote that a character is being followed which creates mystery and suspense amongst the viewers as the identity of the follower is hidden. It also creates fear as the audience do not know what to expect next.

Extreme long shotused to put into perspective how deserted or eerie and area is.

Low angle shotthey can emphasize how scary or intimidating a villain is. This could make the audience and characters feel weak and insignificant.

Over the shoulder shotThis is perceived as one of the best shots to build tension. It is used to add suspense and tension. It is used especially round mirrors and reflections so the audience and see whats happening as soon. Alternatively is can hide someones identity from the viewer to create more mystery.

EditingFast pace editing involving fast cuts is often used to emphasise drama and heighten tension. An example of this is the trailer of Women in Black.

Slow pace editing is also used in emotional scenes. This allows more concentration on the character in order for the audience to see the pain and fear they are suffering.


Mise en scenePsychological Horror films use dark and scary settings that sting fear and tension into the audience. This setting is also relatable to the scenes being played out.Low-key lighting is also commonly used because they intend to create mystery and a fear of unknown for the audience as they do not know what is to happen next.

Sometimes the killer in these films may wear normal clothes because by doing this the character can relate to people in real life, allowing the film to connect ton easily connect with the audience.

SettingThe typical locations for a horror film are usually isolated, abandoned or locations with a hidden past. This creates a build up of tension for the audience.

Setting of the film Session 9

Setting of the film Conjuring

StorylinesSession 9 Located in an abandoned hospital. The plot is for an asbestos company to steal asbestos from the hospital. However an horrific past seems to be coming back.Angel Heart An investigator is hired by a called Louis Cyphre to track down a singer called Johnny Favourite but the investigation takes an unexpected and somber turn.