Analysis of Film Dracula, Prince of Darkness
Horror has been a popular genre over the last 200 years. People enjoy
reading gothic novels and watching horror films because it injects
excitement into their lives. This may be because generally life is
safer and people may find it mundane; horror gives people a thrill and
knowing you're in safe surroundings lets you know you're going to be
ok after the short time you are being entertained.
Writers like Sheridan Le Fanu, Bram Stoker and Edgar Allen Poe have
all been popular horror authors, however, the first great gothic novel
was 'Mysteries of Udolpho' written by Anne Radcliffe in 1794.
Then, film was invented and 'Nosferatu' was the first horror film made
by the Germans. This then encouraged more films to be made and they
have become increasingly more popular. Recently in films technical
advances have made films more realistic because people's expectations
are becoming greater, we want to believe what we see is real.
We watched Dracula, Prince of Darkness made by Hammer in 1965 and have
studied the conventions and techniques as they appear in the film and
in this essay it will be about the effect of them on the audience, how
they generate pleasurable fear.
Most horror films have a similar storyline. They are usually set in an
isolated place with a gothic setting and most of the scary parts take
place at night. The main characters usually consist of the monster or
'baddie', who may be a murderer and is not easily destroyed, which is
handy for sequels. A clever person or maybe a scientist, 'stupid'
people that often go off on their own and is more likely to get killed
first, and a beautiful women who screams a lot and may get injured, or
even killed for dramatic purposes.
There will be a number of tense chases and exciting near misses which
tend to happen in the middle of the film or near the end before the
monster is caught, if he isn't killed or caught then the film can be