Monthly Archives: June 2007

1408, and PG-13 vs. R-rated horror

Last night, I saw the most terrifying movie I have ever seen (and you all know how much I love horror movies). Last night, I saw 1408.

I know, a lot of you are probably groaning right now: “What? A PG-13 movie scared her? What a wimp!”. All I can say to that is, unless you’ve seen it, you can not know. Also, gore and sex do not terror make! Movie gore is silly. Malevolent visions in mirrors? Scary.

I know the blogosphere is up in arms that the PG-13 1408 is slaughtering the R-rated “torture porn” Hostel II. I even remember reading one blogger (sorry, no link) try to rally the troops to “save” R-rated horror. Well, if my choices are between more movies like 1408, movies that are generally scary in their own right without relying on gore; and movies like Saw and Hostel, which rely on visceral images to make you cringe, but never really scare; I will always choose the former.

Of course, I realize that things aren’t really that simple. The quality of a movie has little to do with its rating. But I don’t really believe that R-rated horror is in any real danger of disappearing, and even if it did, I bet it’d be back sooner rather than later.