With the rise of platforms streaming and the saturation of contemporary horror cinema, it has become an arduous task to genuinely surprise and scare today’s viewer. Given the evolution of the public, which is now more informed and has a greater critical sense towards the genre, an inevitable question arises: How to scare today’s audiences, who seem to know all the tricks and mechanics of horror films?
During the recent Masterclass of the movie The Exorcist: Believersmade in Mexico and aimed at fans eager to learn the ins and outs of the creative process, this question was directed at producer Jason Blum and to film director, David Gordon Green.
Green, pondering the issue, argued that, although it may seem like a simplistic answer, one of the crucial components is the atmosphere. He emphasized the importance of lighting in the production of a horror film: “It’s not just about what you light and put in front of the camera, but what you don’t light.which becomes so important in these films.”
While the director’s response delved into technique, Jason Blum, the renowned producer behind some of the biggest horror hits in recent years, provided a different perspective, focusing on the very essence of the story.
Without taking away from Green’s point of view, Blum noted: “I have another answer. It’s something simple. It’s very easy to say, but very difficult to do. One of the tests to which we subject the material to decide whether to make the film or not is to ask ourselves: If we remove all the scares, does it still work as a drama? My answer to your question is that If you have a great drama on your hands, that doesn’t need scares, then you have a great horror movie.. It’s easier said than done, but that for me is the answer.”
Blum concluded his reflection by underlining the importance of telling a captivating story. Despite facing a more cynical public today, she assured that If the plot manages to keep viewers on the edge of their seats, even if there are no scares or terror, the film will be undeniably terrifying..
Both perspectives offer a window into the intricate alchemy of creating a successful horror film in the current era. The combination of a polished cinematographic technique with a gripping narrative seems to be the master recipe that The Exorcist: Believers has implemented. It remains to be seen if, once released, the film manages to meet the high expectations that these horror visionaries have established.
The Exorcist: Believers hits the screens like a direct sequel to the original film that captivated (or terrified) audiences during the 1970s. One of the elements that arouses the most expectation in this sequel is the return of actress Ellen Burstyn, who played the grieving mother of a demon-possessed girl in the original film.
This sequel arrives with the promise of giving nightmares to today’s viewers. It will be available in all cinemas in the country from Thursday October 5.