A Response to Stephen Kingís
ďWhy We Crave Horror MoviesĒ
Based on the firm belief that we are all mentally ill, horror novelist Stephen King writes an essay in Playboy magazine speculating the popular appeal of horror movies. King writes the essay with a general audience in mind although the article is found in Playboy. With much experience in the creepy field of horror, King has found the hidden animal that draws one to see a horror movie. The feeling of daring ourselves and doing scary things to show that we are not afraid. The horror film appeals to all that is bad in us and gives it a chance to come out in a socially acceptable way instead of killing someone. Over all, we see horror flicks to have a very strange kind of fun.
I agree and rely on Kingís opinions as a writer and reader of horror and nonfiction. With much experience in reading his work and seeing his movies, King has come to a reasonable and logical explanation as to why we see horror movies. When a new horror movie comes out, I feel this strange craving to go and buy a ticket. My favorites are the completely gory and never could happen types of films. They always have me on the edge of my seat and I love that feeling! Besides, things like that could never happen anyway. Itís like a dare to go and face the other world of pain and agony, except thereís no risk involved, and you canít get hurt. That feeling of natural adrenaline is something that will always keep me coming back to see another horror flick. Like King explains in his essay, we go to have fun and exercise the sick side of our souls. Thatís good enough for me.
According to Stephen King, Horror makes us feel like children again. It gives us that old imagination back and loosen up a little. When I go to a horror movie, thatís exactly what I expect from it. It needs to make me feel alive inside when I leave, like a child. If this makes me look insane, then oh well. But insanity has different degrees by which one can be judged. We go to see horror films to feel normal. The potential killer is in all of us and our emotions have their own body. If we start to give in to the killer, then the feeling of normality slowly diminishes. Horror films however, give us a chance to exercise that killer in a healthy way other than going out and killing someone. I feel that this explanation is the best one that anyone could come with. Like King, I to feel that the potential killer is within each of us. However, the pressures of society force us to keep the killer locked up and hidden away. Going to see a horror film is a way that we can somehow exercise that demon in a way that society and ourselves can accept.
King argues that horror films are also just a way to have good old fashion fun. I agree, to a point. For adults and teenagers, sure horror movies can be great, especially if you have someone to cling to! But for a certain type of people, horror movies could mean bad news. I know plenty of people who left the theatre in tears of horror and other in a state of mental shock. I could also see that horror could become an unhealthy addiction. Just the sight of blood could give the wrong person some nasty ideas. They could go on a hearty killing rampage and crave the sight of blood more and more. That scenario sounds like the plot of a horror movie, but it could happen. For most people, I agree with king that horror movies are a great way to have fun and enjoy in moderation.
I canít say that horror movies have made me a better person or given me a whole new insight to life. Infact, the only thing that horror films have given me are a few nasty nightmares. But without horror movies, I would probably be a huge wimp and the thought of a head getting chopped off would send me screaming. Overall, I feel that Mr. King and I are the same along with the rest of the world. We all have the same itching feeling to get a glimpse of blood when we pass that car accident on the free way. That would explain the traffic jams. We are human with the same wants and needs that we would like to see met. On the whole, I feel that horror movies are out there to entertain us and exercise that sick side of our souls.
(5 paragraphs, 797 words, 2.5 pages, double-spaced, Times New Roman, 12-point font)