About once a month or so me and my friend get together and watch a horror film. Snake has unnecessarily converted the downstairs room into a ‘home cinema’ so it’s very scary. Last night we watched House At The End Of The Street and we both felt we had never been so scared.
Of course that was a falsehood. We are always super scared. We were terrified at Paranormal Activity 1-4 (slightly less at 4 obviously), The Shining and now this. We watched Sinister the other week though and I came to the groundbreaking conclusion that actually, the supernatural isn’t always a surefire way to up the screams.
Take Sinister for example. It opened with a very creepy video, but initially my money was on serial killer. When it became apparent it was a gross demon thing, which incidentally was revealed very well, I was disappointed. It just felt that little bit less creative and actually, not half as scary.
Sometimes the supernatural is utterly freaky. I still think Paranormal Activity is one of the best horrors ever. It uses the found footage method brilliantly and turns the chills up and down perfectly. But by and large, a human threat is more scary, especially when it’s not entirely clear exactly what’s going on. This is the case in House At The End Of The Street, and in Silent House. Silent House is a one shot film and the explanation for what is going on is left entirely to the end. House At The End Of The Street drips the information gradually with plenty of red herrings.
We still don’t really know why we do it do ourselves. Every time, as the opening titles come up, we feel our stomachs lurch and we feel like we’re actually making a huge mistake. It’s much the same as the feeling you get when you’re sat on the rollercoaster waiting for it to start. Invariably one of us needs the toilet so the other one has to go with them and wait outside, just in case. Each film is punctuated by mutterings of ‘I don’t like it’ and ‘I’m not happy’. Yet each time we do it again!
I’m hoping to see You’re Next next. In the cinema!