Science of Horror



2008, 82 minutes, Germany/USA, Language: English, HD Video, Colour

The feminist perspective towards the so called “low body genres” changed with the launch of  the book “Men, women and chain saws” (1992) by Carol Clover as well as Linda William’s “Hard Core” (1989). Until then, genres such as horror were mainly condemned by feminist writings, as they were regarded as a cinema, which was solely made for a male audience, often serving to fulfill sadistic pleasures. 
“Men, women and chainsaws” and “Hard core” also attracted attention, as it emerged from an acknowledged, elite academic background, with both authors being scholars at the University of California, Berkeley. Today both the authors are still professors at the Berkeley University. Although never denying the misogynistic subtexts in those genres, the authors opened the door and gave way for a feminist reading, which went beyond the established and often negative attitudes towards these genres.

“Science of horror” is an attempt to introduce these new cycles of ideas. It quite consciously opens with the recurring famous topics of horror, such as “censorship” and “catharsis”, but speedily develops into a discourse, which shifts the focus on gender related approaches. By doing this, the film aims at covering a broad scientific perspective towards the genre, while touching upon issues that have not been discussed in film before. 
The equality approach of filmmakers and theorists within the film, is a way to explore the genre from different perspectives. In addition, it serves as a comment on the often neglected influence, which the two disciplines, filmmaking and film criticism, have on each other.

Written & Directed: Katharina Klewinghaus
Soundtrack: Fantomas, Hannah von Hübbenet, Jan Lehmann
Interviews: Katharina Klewinghaus, Hasko Baumann
Camera: Ralph Goertz, Thomas Janze, Logan Leabo, David Sünderhauf
Sound: Henrik Momberger
Editing & Post-Production: Normann Petkau
Animation: Annette Jung
Sound Effects Editor & Sound Mix: Nils Hofmann
Directing Assistant: Nina Berfelde
Consultant: Stefan Ernsting, Peter Thiemann
Producer: Thomas Janze