For many of us, the lure of heading into a dark cinema to enjoy a couple of hours of being scared half to death is something we look forward to, while for others, it’s something they avoid like the plague unless they are dragged kicking and screaming into the theatre to meet their fate.
If you’re a huge fan of the horror genre, you might be interested to know why it is that you crave the feeling of danger and the physical symptoms it manifests.
In an interview with The Latch in 2020, Registered Australian psychologist, Frances di Bartomoleo explained that watching scary content can “serve to release bodily tension, help us release stressors and engage in emotions we’re harbouring and trying to repress.”
Di Bartomoleo also revealed that “people who show a higher liking of or are more drawn to the horror genre.”
“Horror films cause an emotional reaction that people generally like, i.e. to feel fear,” she said.
“The body’s emotional state increases in tension, stress and consequential distress and associated sensations from the feeling or emotions that are ascending into consciousness. When people feel the need to watch the horror genre, it is generally coming from a subconscious place.”
Other reasons that experts cite for people being partial to scary movies is that they enable us to explore our own dark sides, allow us to feel the “fight or flight” adrenalin rush reserved for life-threatening situations while in a safe space, teach us coping mechanisms and even help us prepare for the worst.
If all of those reasons have you excited for your next scare-fest then you’ll be pleased to know you don’t have to wait until Halloween to enjoy some big-budget horror tentpoles at the movies. Thanks, in part, to pandemic induced delays, there is a slew of great screamers hitting the big screen over the next few months.
Spiral: From the Book of Saw — May 13
Synopsis: The ninth instalment of the smash hit Saw series sees Detective Banks and his partner take charge of an investigation into grisly murders that are eerily reminiscent of the city’s gruesome past. Unwittingly entrapped in a deepening mystery, Banks finds himself at the centre of the killer’s morbid game.
Starring: Chris Rock, Max Minghella, Marisol Nichols, and Samuel L. Jackson.
A Quiet Place Part II – May 27
Synopsis: The sequel to 2018’s A Quiet Place sees the Abbott family facing the terrors of the outside world as they continue their fight for survival in silence. Forced to venture into the unknown, they quickly realise that the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats that lurk beyond the sand path.
Starring: Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe, Cillian Murphy and Djimon Hounsou.
The Conjuring 3: The Devil Made Me Do It – June 2
Synopsis: The eighth instalment in The Conjuring Universe and the sequel to 2013’s The Conjuring and 2016’s The Conjuring 2, The Devil Made Me Do It sees Paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren try to uncover the truth behind a murderer’s claim of demonic possession.
The film is based on true events, with the 1981 Connecticut murder trial of Arne Cheyenne Johnson serving as the inspiration.
Starring: Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Ruairi O’Connor, Sarah Catherine Hook and Julian Hilliard.
Escape Room 2 – July 1
Synopsis: If you haven’t seen 2019’s Escape Room, you might want to check that out first as the sequel picks up right where the original left off.
In the first film, six adventurous strangers travel to a mysterious building to experience the escape room — a game where players compete to solve a series of puzzles to win $10,000. What starts out as seemingly innocent fun soon turns into a living nightmare as the four men and two women discover each room is an elaborate trap that’s part of a sadistic game of life or death.
Starring: Taylor Russell, Logan Miller, Isabelle Fuhrman, Thomas Cocquerel, Holland Roden, Carlito Olivero, and Indya Moore.
Don’t Breathe 2 – August 12
Synopsis: The Blind Man is back and he is more terrifying than ever in this follow up to the 2016 original. In the sequel, the Blind Man has been hiding out for several years in an isolated cabin and has taken in and raised a young girl orphaned from a devastating house fire.
Their quiet life together is shattered when a group of criminals kidnap the girl, forcing the Blind Man to leave his safe haven to save her.
Starring: Stephen Lang.
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