2. Conventions Of Horror – Settings
• Settings - This is usually isolated or abandoned places, dark and low
key lighting usually in alleyways or deserted houses. It is usually
something that connotes being alone.
• Locations for horror genre are usually Old farm house, highways,
countryside, dark woods, city subways, abounded buildings,
graveyard and basements.
3. Conventions of Horror – Technical Codes
• High and low camera angles and low and high lighting can connote
fear and nightmares and can make a scene appear much more scarier.
• POV - This allows the audience to view the film from either the
monsters or victim's point of view, which creates emotions for the
• Handheld shots – this makes it seem more real to the audience as
they cant quite tell what is happening. A film that does this is Clover
4. Conventions of Horror – Iconography
• Visual effects – The Horror genre is known
for using dark colours to show evil and red
to show blood and danger.
• Lighting – Horrors are known to use low-
key lighting. Or they have one key bright
part of lighting, for example a fire or torch.
• Props – this usually helps see what type of
horror that film is (sub genre). However
the key props for a horror film is something
that can cause pain or make blood for
example a knife or chainsaw.
• The iconography of the ‘monster’ is
something that creates fear and disgust.
• The iconography of the victim is usually
more women compared to men and are
5. Conventions of Horror – Narrative
• The typical narrative for a horror movie are a group of people
(usually teens or family) being persecuted by an antagonised.
6. Conventions of Horror – Character types
• The main protagonist, which is usually the victim or hero of the film
• The villain (‘monster’)
• A group of teenagers or a family
• Creepy children
• Police officer or safety person
7. Conventions of Horror –Themes
• Good vs Bad
• Zombie apocalypse
• Beyond death
• Paranormal activities
9. Sub genre - Gothic
• This contains both elements of gothic and horror.
• This genre of horror unusually includes things such as castles,
dungeons, ruined landscapes and magic / supernatural.
• For example Dracula 1992 and Frankenstein 1931
• This sub genre has the same conventions as Horror such as the red as
blood and black as evil, the same narrative, both a hero/ victim and
10. Sub Genre – slasher
• This sub genre deals with violence for the majority of the film and
usually involves a psychopath serial killer stalker, who kills numerous
amount of people. there is typically a teenage girl that services this
• These films build up a lot of mystery and suspense to hopefully build
up fear and then create the scream from the audience.
• For example PSYCHO 1960 and The Texas Chain Saw Massacre 1974
• This sub genre is similar to the horror genre however has a lot more
gore and violence within it.
11. Sub genre – Psychological
• This is the fears, guilt and belief of the characters.
• Its about the emotional instability and the supernatural, which is used
to build tension and further the plot.
• For example The Shining 1980
• This sub genre is about emotions not an actual monster so is very
different from a basic horror film.
12. Sub genre – Comedy Horror
• This is when they put some comedy elements into a horror film.
• The horror genre almost always inevitably crosses over with black
• For example Scary movie 2000
13. Sub genre – Action Horror
• This sub genre combines evil, an event or the supernatural into a
horror film. This normally consists of gun fights and car chases.
• Action horror commonly uses zombies, demons, gore, vicious animals
• For example Blade 1998 and Dawn of the dead 1978 and 2004
• This sub genre just involves a lot more action, you could say it
partners with the action adventure genre and horror genre.
14. Sub genre – science fiction
• This often deals with paranormal but there is no limit to mad scientist
and experiments going wrong.
• For example Alien 1979
15. Sub Genre – Zombie
• This is usually the end of human life and is taken over by zombies.
• For example Night of the living dead 1968 and Dawn of the dead
• This sub genre still involves most elements from typical horror
however usually involves more death and blood scenes.
16. Sub Genre – Paranormal
• This consists of ghost and spirts, a haunted house and possession,
which all links to the supernatural.
• For example The Conjuring 2013.
• This sub genre is very different as no one is necessarily killed during
the film, it’s a spirt or ghost haunting or possessing people within the
17. Sub Genre – Gore
• This is a mixture of most sub genres. It usually covers a lot of gore
scene so blood and violence.
• It is similar to the Horror genre as again there is a victim and a killer,
blood, violence etc.
18. Sub genre – Found footage
• This is when a film is made based on so called found footage. This
could be a picture or video that shows there's something unnatural in
• For example Blair witch project 1999
• This is very different from typical horror as it usually made up but this
isn’t total fictional.
20. Rick Altman
• Rick Altman's theory suggests that one of the main pleasures offered
to audiences is the release of culture rules and regulations. Audiences
can now abandon themselves to the pleasures of actions that break
established moral or legal boundaries. This is called Counter Culture
21. Richard Dyer
• Richards Dyer theory of genre suggest that the film genre offers
escapism. This escape of normal genre is encoded in texts and
opposes social tension and inadequacy.
• Richards theory of genre works really well with the sub genre ‘slasher’
for example The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
22. Jackie Stacy
• Jackie Stacy’s theory is an argument with Richard Dyers theory. Jackie
has said that his categories need to be thought through more
specifically. As more people are looking closely at more sub genre
such as Gothic horror and slasher films, all genres change over time –
this came from social and historical changes. This means that film
genre must be studied with the contexts of the time in which the film
was made. This is because not everyone will want the same thing or
like the same thing.