The Changeling Essay

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Freshmen Comp 1030
October 30, 2012
What’s Behind the Door?
While waiting in line for the midnight premiere of the newest horror flick, we have adrenaline running through our bodies watching the previews and seeing the lights dim. At last it is completely dark. Creepy music makes its way into the theater; we can feel the anticipation in the air. Our palms begin to sweat, our hearts are racing, and our minds are questioning “what’s going to happen next?”. Finally we are being shown what is behind the door, we see the monster for the first time, as we peak through our fingers. As scared as we are we keep watching. Once it is over we remind our self that it was “just a movie” and is not real. But if it is not real, then why are we so scared, and why do we watch it? The Changeling is a story of a composer named Doctor Russell living in New York, who loses his wife and daughter in a traffic accident on vacation. After their deaths he moves himself cross country to Washington State, where he rents an eerie Victorian style mansion and begins to try to live again. Doctor Russell discovers that he has company in his large home and becomes intrigued to find who or what it is. He discovers that it is a ghost murdered by his own father, now being replaced by an imposter who collaborates with the father to carry out the lie. The ghost of this child has shown himself through shattered windows, opening and closing doors, and speaking during a séance. Russell digs deeper to find that the child murdered is linked to a

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powerful family in the town and whose heir is a senator. As the movie goes on, we as the audience try to discover who the monster is, why we are frightened and what is the other. Robin Wood explains to us that the reason we are scared is because somehow the horror film is linked to our life. He explains the idea of basic repression which is “universal, necessary, and inescapable. Basic repression makes us distinctively human, capable of directing...
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