Two genres that prove that opposites attract; horror + comedy creates an experience that everyone can relate to, and makes a previously niche genre more palatable to a greater audience. It also creates a new medium for a completely new tone… funny, scary, serious, and irreverent, all at once.
Have you ever been to a haunted house where a performer jumped out at you with a prop chainsaw? You screamed, clutched at the friends that accompanied you, and then you found yourself laughing after the initial jolt of adrenaline wore off. After the human body’s primary response to fear, it responds with a wave of giddiness once you realize that you’re ok. It’s a unique feeling, and it’s hard to capture.
Horror-comedy movies do just that. They take genuinely frightening moments, weave in clever writing, honest humor, and add a level of humanity that traditional horror movies often forego in favor of melodrama.
Give horror-comedy a chance. To start with, check out some of these great films that missed the attention of the public:
- Cabin in the Woods
- Tucker and Dale vs. Evil
- Shaun of the Dead
- The Final Girls
If you love Joss Whedon, you’ll love “Cabin in the Woods.” And you’ll probably see some familiar faces, as Whedon loves to reuse his favorite actors.
“Cabin in the Woods” starts out as the cliche horror movie; a bunch of randy teens go out into the spooky woods for a slutty camping trip gone wrong. Then stuff starts getting meta.
The movie makes some fun statements about horror movie tropes and the characters that live in those shallow worlds. It’s also just plain good fun. It’s witty, fast-paced, with a healthy dose of creepy plus gore.
The creepy hillbillies in the woods are the good guys, and the partying high schoolers are the “evil” in this adorable flip. Prepare yourself for a lot of corn syrup blood and guts.
Director Eli Craig made a bizarrely lighthearted love story out of a classic horror movie situation, and reversed all the character roles. This is the perfect movie for your sissy friend who claims to hate horror movies. It’s firmly un-scary, and decidedly adorable.
“Shaun of the Dead” is the gold standard in the world of comedy-horror. It’s deadpan humor next to high-intensity situations is the perfect mix.
The first in Edgar Wright’s “Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy”, everyone needs to watch “Shaun of the Dead”… if only to understand all the pop culture references that have been going over your head. It’s sad, hilarious, and it’s the kind of horror movie that’s appropriately stressful while the comedy comes in just in time to balance you out.
It’s funny, it’s gory, it’s clever, and it’s scary. It’s also perfect for laughing at the standard “couple” tropes that are seen in most films. It mocks the false, superficial relationships, and praises the real ones that have substance; the ones that Hollywood doesn’t show as often. All set in a kind of meta-horror movie that offers a little bit of everything. Nothing says “I hate Valentine’s Day” quite like watching teens get eviscerated in the cliche camping-trip-gone-wrong scenario.
The daughter of a ‘80s horror movie scream queen actress attends a screening of the movie that made her recently-deceased mother famous. She and her friends find themselves sucked into the B-movie, complete with all the standard horror movie characters and tropes.
They have to find out what happens to them if they can survive the movie and make it to the credits. It’s weird, hysterical, and surprisingly poignant. “The Final Girls” was one of those gems that missed mass attention in 2015.