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Thriller Genre in Films Research Paper

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Updated: Jul 12th, 2022

The thriller genre is one of the lively and most exciting that scriptwriters prefer using. The genre is characterized by elicit moods it gives to the viewers. The thriller genre gives a heightened suspense reaction, anticipation, anxiety, excitement, and surprise. Thrillers keep the viewers on the hedge points of their seats as the plot nears the climax (An, 2019). The thriller genre’s major concept is covering up important information where elements gradually come out unexpectedly. This research paper aims to find more information on using the thriller genre in the artistic world, such as common movies and films.

Many people like watching thriller movies where much of character diversion has been evident for many years. Viewers are fascinated by the elements surrounding thriller films they like following. The first element that the paper discusses is the dynamism of characters (An, 2019). Dynamic characters are used in many ways, with the first being a positive character who revolves around the movie showing the goodness they possess (Song-hwa, 2020). On the characters’ dynamism still, scriptwriters introduce to viewers a negative character who appears to be the antagonist of the good guy portrayed.

The thriller genre’s dynamic characters pass through systematic internal changes throughout the entire storyline. They change for better or for worse, and in many examples, the main characters in the movies and any other literature are dynamic (Hella, 2019). A dynamic character is essential because they show the real-life transitions that come when people do not anticipate. Thriller genre enlightens viewers about the social issues that make changes on people.

In the film Wrong Turn 7, the hikers, such as Jen, Adam, Darius, are portrayed as friends but later on, it comes to emerge that the group was barbaric. The group led by Adam later kills one of their foundation members, an act that turns Jen as inhumane (Allen, 2021). Adam and Gary are close friends. However, it appears that Adam, who is portrayed as an admirable person, turns to be a wicked character and even crushes Gary with a rolling tree trunk, everyone expected Adam to be the advocate for humanity but the viewers are left shocked from the turn of events (Allen, 2021). The dynamism presented here is the change of relationship ties that is introduced at first.

The other element of the thriller genre is suspense, which promotes an intense level of anticipation and excitement to the viewer. One way to build suspense is to use time factor. It means the protagonist should be working against the clock, and the clock should be working for the antagonist. For example, in the film 24 Hours, Karen and Will have less than a day to flee away from their captors to protect their child from kidnapping. That appears to be impossible for them since they are the protagonists, hence finding themselves in a tough situation with time. Film writers use this element to capture the viewers’ full attention so that they follow the context and see what happens. To some extent, suspense is the key element behind viewer’s interest in a given film (An, 2019). Scriptwriters are mostly using suspense to drive the viewer into critical thinking of many occurrences in real-life situations and for optimum entertainment from the film.

Another element of the thriller genre used in many movies is the cat and mouse characters. When the viewer watches a thriller with cat and mouse games, it reflects the turn of events that occur basically due to change over time (Lee, 2017). For example, in the film Old Boy, a drunken character Dae-Su is kidnapped and put in an enclosed room that has no windows for one and a half-decade. The character is later released from imprisonment, which viewers do not realize. The event’s turn to show the cat and mouse game is when Dae-su tracks down the main accountable for his imprisonment (Lee, 2017). He fights frequent times and does not eventually like the feedback he sees and decides to maneuver in other ways.

References

Allen, N. Wrong Turn movie review & film summary (2021) | Roger Ebert. Rogerebert.com. Web.

An, J. (2019). The Korean mother in contemporary thriller films: A monster or just modern? Journal of Japanese And Korean Cinema, 11(2), 154-169. Web.

Hella, T. (2019). Character archetypes: Aesthetic values in character design in Malaysia’s animated films. International Journal of Innovative Technology and Exploring Engineering, 8(11S2), 242-245. Web.

Lee, S. (2017). “Hollywood and Beyond”: Genre hybridity and transnationality in the crime thriller films of the 1960s’ Korean Cinema. Journal of Popular Narrative, 22(1), 51-89. Web.

Song-hwa, Y. (2020). Signaling effect and the influence of genres: Movie consumption on Chinese online video platforms. Global Fashion Management Conference, 2020, 220-225. Web.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Thriller Genre in Films." July 12, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/thriller-genre-in-films/.

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