A fine Halloween tradition returns as once again I pick the brains of horror fans, media and assorted genre professionals as I ask that immortal question: what do horror fans want? Kicking things off, we welcome the Horror Man, Sam Santiago, the Editor in Chief of Truly Disturbing.com.
Truthfully, when asked this question I was taken aback. Then, after digesting such a broad question, came to only one solution. Horror needs these three basic things to be good.
1. To be genuinely scared.
(This is a HUGE deal since anyone can be disgusted. Fans want more than anything to be scared.)
2. To have an ending that blows are minds.
(Look at the classic films of yesterday: Halloween, Psycho, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Exorcist All of these films had endings that made us gasp in terror and wonder “what next?”)
3. Good characters we can relate to.
(If character development is terrible, the audience could care less if they die. On the other hand if one can relate to said character, when their death comes, it’s like a blow to the chest.)
These three things, above all others(whether fans will admit it or not) are what horror fans loved in older flicks that today’s director seems to be lacking. (There are good films out there but they are few and far between.)
Sure making a few jokes, and showing a boob or two is a good way to get an audience of teenagers attention but REAL horror directors look to those three points I laid out, to delegate how their film will be.
To sum up this rant, I must say on my own behalf that I cannot/will not try and tell you what horror fans want – I can barely tell you what I want for lunch. Those three points are more of a stepping stone or pathway to make a great horror film. You add anything else to those three key things mentioned earlier and it only adds to a film.
I am a firm believer that horror fans will NEVER be satisfied. Like gluttons, we eat up any and all things horror we can get our hands on and then complain when it is different from the norm. I say we should, above all else, support NEW ideas instead of rehashing and revamping older, already well-established ideas for films.
Then again, what do I know.