Mental Health and Horror: A Match Made In Heaven

Unsurprisingly, at least a few of my friends have shared this project with me. I thought it was fitting to mention this during the month of horror movies. I’ve been a horror fan from a young age, and precisely for some of the reasons the filmmakers mention here. Horror provides a catharsis; a kind of external scare to focus your fears on so they can get outside your head a bit. As BJ Coangelo says here, “There are a lot of people who have used horror movies to learn how to fight the monsters in their own minds, and it’s high time that we de-stigmatize horror as a coping mechanism.”

I’ve always loved the feeling of a good scare. I think that’s exactly why; it gives you that adrenaline rush that makes you feel alive and also takes the forefront to your other emotions for a bit. I’ve probably met over half of my friends in Chicago through horror communities in one way or another. That sense of bonding through this so-called “lowbrow” art has also helped me realize how many intelligent, creative, and empathetic people love the time-tested art of a good scare.

I also love what Alice Collins says here: “Horror has given me the gift of facing my traumas in a controlled environment where I can feel safe.” When we see our deepest fears reflected on the screen, we can cope with and react to them in a more low-risk way.

Thankfully this project has met its funding goal, though I think you can still kick in to get some of that cool swag. Future Mental Filmness screening, anyone? That would truly be a match made in heaven.

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