Horror Movies: Gateway to Our Dark Side

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I stood upon a high place
And saw, below, many devils
Running, leaping,
And carousing in sin.
One looked up, grinning,
And said: "Comrade! Brother!"
- "I Stood Upon a High Place" by Stephen Crane

From the day we are born we begin our training to become a part of the society. Day after day we learn through a process of reward and punishment the dos and don'ts that make up the civilized world. A child that kisses his sibling is praised and stimulated with hugs and smiles, while one that punches his sibling is punished with spanks and frowns. As we grow up, our understanding of what is right and what is wrong broadens. We see the brutality of actions like murder and we see murderers as sick people. To what extent, though, are these people sick? Don't we pay to watch movies where those actions take place in the most gruesome ways? Horror movies are full of images of blood, violence, and murder. People will wait impatiently for movies like "Saw 2" to get to the movie theaters and then wait in line anxious to get in. Why, however, are we so attracted to this kind of movies? Many might argue that it is the thrill, riding the roller coaster. Others might say that they just like a good scare. However, the appeal of horror movies can actually come from the fact that humans are born with a natural tendency to violence, a dark side of us repressed by society, which lies hidden in our unconscious, and is kept under control by allowing it to come out for a while as we watch our entertaining horror films. Horror movies have been around since the very beginning of film. The first horror film ever made was the silent short "Le Manoir Du Diable" by Georges Melies, a vampire film which dates back to 1896 (Bennett). Later on, the genre would become popular with gothic movies like "Dracula" (1931) and "Frankenstein" (1931), which were taken from books written in the 1800s (Horror Film). Nowadays, horror movies present even more explicit violence and blood with movies like...
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