In 1990, Noël Carroll published The Philosophy of Horror Or, Paradoxes of the Heart, an investigation into the nature of cinema and fear – our desire to face the worst nightmares on the big screen. Péter Lichter and Bori Máté adapted the book into several chapters, or movements.
Each opens with a Carroll quote on one specific way horror works, followed by brutally treated appropriated footage from classics of the genre that highlight this observation.
It is all very structural and materialist, making it a companion piece to another Cinema Regained film: Stephen Broomer’s Fat Chance, in which materials from gothic noir icon Laird Cregar are treated and used in a similar essayistic fashion. And let’s not forget Kier-La Janisse’s Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror, which in Bright Future embarks on a similar journey towards one heart of darkness, albeit in a more classical documentary mode.