The Stigma Of Horror

The film Get Out is first and foremost a horror film. It’s produced by the same film studio behind Paranormal Activity and Insidious, has elements of horror like the dead possessing the living and a rather high body count with creative kills one would see in a horror film. When this film was first being introduced, it was marketed as a horror film.

And yet now when I hear about Get Out, the word thriller has replaced horror as the word to describe what Get Out is. After the film’s unbelievable achievements at the box office and with critics, the term social thriller is now used. It seems and appears that because of the success and critical acclaim for Get Out, the film has no more use to identify with the horror genre. It almost feels as if this film is becoming a character in a generic teen film that was once a nerd but is now smiling among the most popular kids in school, not only forgetting who was there for them but almost wanting to deny it.

Of course, this is nothing new. Horror has always been seen by most as cheap thrills or something only those with a low intelligence flock towards. This is undeniably a point of view popular in Hollywood. How many celebrities have gotten their start in horror films? Kevin Bacon is very willing to talk about his humble beginnings on a soap opera like Guiding Light, but I have reason to believe he would either shut down or walk out of an interview if Friday The 13th were to be brought up.

One of the most popular celebrities in recent times, Jennifer Aniston got her start in the first Leprechaun film and certainly views it as more socially degrading than any of the numerous generic romantic comedies she’s been in.

It’s even a rare feat when a horror film or something barely horror related like Bettlejuice wins an Academy Award for makeup or sound editing.

When Kathy Bates won an Academy Award for her performance in Misery it was quite shocking, mainly because it was shocking the Academy took the time to watch a memorable performance before shoving their nose into the air at something based on Stephen King’s work.

Most likely even a perfect horror film will not be noticed by the Academy, but it seems any film that is a generic attempt at Death Of A Salesman or The Iceman Cometh will be nominated.

The stigma of horror will never end, which is probably for the best. It’s best for horror not to be accepted by the high brows whose only concern is how smart they appear to be. Horror is meant to be what rock music was many many years ago, cool and rebellious and mainly for anybody looking to have a good time.

 

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