Why do people like horror movies
For many the attraction and, in some cases, addiction to horror movies lies not in the actual appeal the movies have in terms of their story structure or visual quality but in their psychological and physical responses to many of the scenes contained within horror movies. This can cause many people to develop a strong affinity to even some of the most gruesome or shocking of films that others may simply find unbearable to watch.
One of the primary motivating factors for many people to view horror movies is a social status symbol. Much like many individuals in past societies had to go through various arduous tasks in order to show their worth, horror movies today act for many people (particularly teenagers) as a sort of “right of passage”. Those who can successfully sit through a particularly scary movie, for instance, are considered “cool” while those who cannot are branded weak by a group
Many people also utilize horror movies as a way to get close to others as a bonding ritual of sorts. When confronted with a terrible situation human beings naturally tend to form stronger bonds to each other, and in the case of couples in a relationship this can often lead to a stronger feeling of intimacy due to the shared mutual unease. Additionally a male acting strong in the face of fearful scenes is a comforting fact to others, helping to establish a greater “alpha male” status that has governed human development for millennia.
Beyond simple social aspects, however, many people may actually develop a physical addiction to horror movies and the psychochemical responses they generate within our bodies. When confronted with a scary situation our bodies naturally produce a large amount of the chemical adrenaline that stimulates our heart rate and other functions into a “fight or flight” status to allow us to either escape a situation or defend ourselves accordingly. While watching a scary movie this feeling is activated again and again to give regular doses to us and can in fact develop a natural chemical addiction that encourages individuals to experience newer, more frightening scenarios more often to satisfy the craving.