I was watching a terrifying movie the other day and I made a realization. I will not name movies here because I do not want to throw anyone under the bus, but I realized it feels as though gore and plot have become mutually exclusive. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love gore. I love watching faces and limbs get ripped off. I love watching blood spatter across the screen and hearing screams of victims. I am a huge fan! However, this movie that I watched had almost no gore, almost no blood, no jump scares and was, by far, the best horror movie I have seen in a very long time. The plot was heavy with depth, the characters got developed, I was helplessly sucked in to the story and I loved every minute of it! Again, I am not speaking against gore and bloodbaths caused by torture and machetes, but I am speaking out against movies that are ONLY that. Movies that use shock value rather than story.
Cheap thrills and nonsense have sadly become the norm. I know that there are exceptions so don’t jump all over me, but can we not keep plot? Can we not keep substance? I’m not sure how or why we have become so violently attached to the fast food of movie gimmicks, the immediate gratification, but I think that movies (and specifically horror movies) have truly suffered.
I want substance. I want to be taken for a journey as I watch a movie unfold. Slow burning plots are not a bad thing. And having a good plot does not mean that it has to be slow burning, but quality is damaged. Obviously solid plots along with entrails would be perfect, but if I can only have one, give me substantial meat over maimed meat any day.
Again, I love gore. Nothing wrong with it. Just make the movie or story mean something. Gore is not scary, it’s exciting. Stories and plots are what stick in our minds and give us those wonderful chills up our spine.
I would much rather psychological twisting over gut twisting…but both is perfect!