The major stock indexes closed higher on Monday (May 2).
Many folks who love a good movie will choose to draw the line at the horror genre. The stresses of life in the real world being what they are, getting scared into cardiac arrest probably doesn't meet their common-sense definition of "entertainment."
Well, we all know that common sense can be overrated. What's more, you needn't be scared of being scared. In fact, to stay away from horror flicks is to deny yourself a couple of hours that are not just "comforting," but downright "soothing"!
Don't take my word for it, dear reader. Hearken unto a psychiatrist from the NYU Medical Center, who was also the past president of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York:
"[Horror movies] allow you to engage in an experience that is, more or less, under your control. It follows, then, that the viewing of a horror movie can act as a kind of soothing factor." (Reuters)
So don't be afraid... don't even be VERY afraid. In order to relax you, Hollywood studios "are releasing no fewer than 12 scary flicks during the summer movie season.... The tally is roughly double last's year's and far above any season in recent years, according to box office trackers."
This weekend's New York Times likewise took note of the growth in scary movies, if not the health benefits of watching them. It reported that major studios (Warner Bros.) are pushing the trend, and that "top-tier" stars (Hilary Swank) now actively seek and receive roles in horror flicks.
Is there a broader cultural import? Graphically violent and "slasher" style movies have been with us since the steady stream first began in the 1970s. In fact, violent/scary/spooky themes have been around since the early 1930s. The point is, the '70s and early '30s were memorable times in the stock market, AND important moments for violent/scary/spooky subject matter in the broader culture.
Our job is to explain when and why these pop culture trends appear and reappear, gain or lose their audience, break into new or extreme territory.
Popular culture matters -- it tells you a great deal about where we are in the larger trend that's driving social mood, and where we're headed next. We can tie it all together for you, in ways you won't discover anyplace else. Come see what we mean. A subscription to the Financial Forecast Service begins with the fast steps below.