When it comes to jump scares in a movie, most horror fans are divided. Some will tell you that they’re overused and cheapen the film, while others will point out countless films that use them well. For me, it’s sort of a toss up. I love The Exorcist & Alien for how they still get me after decades, but found that the remakes of Texas Chainsaw & Nightmare on Elm Street just used them because they had to, in a predictable way.
From a filmmaking perspective, a good horror film should build tension until it’s unbearable, then offer up a sudden scare to release it. But if a film doesn’t do that, the suspense and anxiety in the viewer gets worse and worse until you leave the theatre a former shell of yourself.
Now, that’s my kind of movie.