Genre Exploration : The Horror Mockumentary

Genre Exploration : The Horror Mockumentary

Jocelyn Lawson

   Scavenging through genre and movie to find your perfect fit can become time consuming, tiring and difficult, especially with such a diverse and expansive range of films to search through. Luckily I’m here as your guide through this confusing mess of titles and directors to help you find your perfect film genre. Last edition we took a look into the idea and history of the film noire. Today we look into a personal favorite genre of mine, the horror mockumentary.

   The horror mockumentary, a staple within the horror genre, may not have the popularity of the slasher or creature feature, but it’s a type of film that captivates fans of horror all around the world. What is a horror mockumentary? No it isn’t mocking the genre of horror, it rather lies in that pocket of terror. The mockumentary, which of course derives from mock and documentary, is a horror movie filmed as a documentary. Normally with the first person view of a cameraman, it exploits the fears of not knowing what is behind you, around you and only being able to record everything that happens.

   Many horror mockumentaries, like so much of the genre, are often used to critique hot topics or general topics in culture in a tasteful unsettling way. It offers up a way to ingest that topic in a new sensational and unsettling way and even sometimes critiques the genre itself. It also adds a human touch to the work that the viewer may have had a harder time to latch onto otherwise.

   Now, you’re interested in watching some horror mockumentaries but where do you start? You may have found you’ve already seen or heard of some of the absolute hits in the genre without knowing it, movies such as The Blair Witch Project and Cloverfield. Some other excellent watches though include, Lake Mungo, REC, Troll Hunter, Behind the Mask; Rise of Lesley Vernon, Creep, and V/H/S.

   With another genre opened and explained hopefully your crawl through the web of movies has become a bit easier. Happy movie watching, and don’t find yourself with any nightmares!