Is CGI Ruining Horror Movies?

Is CGI Ruining Horror Movies?

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–I think budgets are the most damaging thing
to any horror movie. You need limitations of budget because you need to be genuinely
creative. –No, I think that’s true, but I think sometimes
there’s the opposite end of it where there’s no money for the scares so you know you’re
not going to see anything really scary. With the first Paranormal Activity there’s no money
and you know there’s no money, so you know there’s no money shot. You know there’s not
going to be a scare, you know like her head isn’t going to twist around or something.
–But here’s the thing. I don’t mind that. I don’t like CGI in horror movies.
–I think it can be effective, but I the first Paranormal Activity was smart, in that it
didn’t lean on that. It leans on the degradation of these two characters’ relationship.
–You keep on saying scary as if CGI equals scary. Or some kind of expensive effect equals
scary. I completely disagree. I think if you’re relying on that for scare, then you’ve missed
the entire point. –It’s like a money shot. It really is just
a money shot thing. If you’re watching porn and it’s just money shots, that’s not really
interesting. You need all of the surroundings story and sex and whatever to make it good.
But if there’s no money shot, then there’s like-
–What you’re saying is climax. And I believe there can be a story driven climax that doesn’t
have to be CGI driven, that doesn’t even have to be action driven.
–I think it does need to at least be somewhat visual, though. I mean, we’re working in film
which is a visual medium. –It can be visual, but it can be story based
and not just blahhh. –Well not just, but I think a portion of
it- I feel like the first porn, paranormal activity.
–The first porn Paranormal Activity. –I can’t talk today, it’s really bad.
So let’s go back to that moment in two when all the kitchen drawers open all at once.
That is a scare that you couldn’t get through character. That’s just a visual thing. It’s
the money shot. That’s all it is. –But I feel that’s what cheapened the next
ones. That’s why they weren’t the first one. It’s because you go gimmick. How many gimmicks
were there in the first Saw. –I see what you’re saying.
–How many gimmicks were there in the first Saw?
–Yeah, but if in the first Saw you never saw any of the horrible-
–There was nothing, they were in a room for ninety five percent of the movie.
–No, no, no. But if you never saw any of the torture parts of the movie. You need them
–There were torture parts, but no gimmicks. There were no high price gimmicks.
–Yes there were. –When?
–I don’t know, I don’t remember the first one that well.
–Exactly, because there was nothing there. –But any of the really gory moments, any
of the really gory moments which you needed. –There weren’t that many, go back and watch
the first one. –I’m not saying you need a lot. We’re not
talking about Transformers vs like an indie movie with none. And I’ve seen good indie
movies that had special effects that were really impressive for the budget.
–You can find effects without budget. –I’ve watched a lot of horror movies, man.
It’s hard. Nothing is really going to happen that is really gonna scare you that much.
Nothing is really gonna make you go “oh holy shit”. Like again, with the first Paranormal
Activity, at no point was I like, oh my God the demon might do something, because there’s
money for anything really supernatural to happen.
–I think in that case, expectation and marketing can destroy the movie’s experience. I think
very much for you, knowing that it was shot for that amount of money, destroyed that experience
for you. And you would have liked it better if you saw it early.
–I think that might have been true. I mean, I think I kind of would have caught on to
it, just from the movie up until that point. You can just kind of tell when a movie doesn’t
have a lot of money in it. But I think that’s fair. And I think again, we’re talking-
–I think that’s the principle of found footage. Is to make the movie feel like it doesn’t
have money in it. –And to be fair, Paranormal Activity’s a
bit of a weird case, in that it wasn’t an indie movie, it had like no budget. Like,
there’s four actors– –He did say fourteen or fifteen thousand.
–There’s four actors and they were there for like a week, and that’s the entire movie.
I’ve actually watched- confession time, I’ve watched a huge amount of horror movies. Like
a lot. And the thing is sometimes you watch them and realize this movie has no budget
and it’s terrible. And sometimes you watch them and are like, this is a good movie, but
I wish they had just something for the end of the movie where they could pull out something
impressive and creepy. And a lot of times they can’t.
–Especially now, I feel like that should be way easier though. There’s so much tech
at such low budgets now, the only excuse is your creativity.
–Well, It Follows for example I thought had really good effects for the money involved.
I really didn’t expect them to have anything, and then they had like some pretty good- you
know what it is? That first prologue in It Follows where you have that girl. She’s sitting
by the beach with the car lights on her, and then it cuts and her body has just been completely
mangled. That to me is what I think I’m talking about. You don’t need that for the vast majority
of the movie, but every once in awhile you want to have the money shot.
–Yeah, but how’d they get that effect? –I don’t know.
–Exactly. –Ok, but they didn’t just pose her.
–Was that expensive? –Well I’m not talking about a huge amount
of money. I’m saying some. –I think we’re both right in different ways.
I think budget and expectation from those budgets can completely destroy a horror movie
and a horror franchise. –Yes, I think if you don’t have it, you have
to depend on character a lot more, and I think in a lot of ways that’s good. And you get
something that’s a lot more psychological in the first Paranormal Activity than you
do in any of the others.


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