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A Dreadful Fear of Clichés

The-RingMy latest column is now up at This Is Horror — this month, I confess my fear of dreadful(ly scary) horror clichés…

I have a confession. There are a few (well, many) horror tropes that I just cannot stomach at all. Not because they’re cliché – although, of course, they are – but because there’s something about them that’s actually, fundamentally, terrifying.

The first involves revenants, namely the twitchy-jittery and/or fast-moving variety. True, this is one of the most hackneyed techniques used in horror movies nowadays – but still. Logically I can figure out how the twitchy-fast effect is achieved. Most likely, it’s a combination of camerawork and post-production trickery. The film is sped up; actors’ movements are edited so they seem to randomly jump across the screen; filters or dark obscuring layers are added so the creatures are blurred, and hard to get a fix on. I know this, I can work this out, logically.

But, alas, fear isn’t necessarily controlled by logic.

Read the rest of this article (in which I am a whimpering puppy) here.

(Honestly, I can hardly stand to look at this image from The Ring. FREAKS ME OUT.)

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