Horror films are designed to f*ck you up a bit. Toying with our sense of sight and sound continuously, these movies, more so than any other genre, are crafted as sensory overloads, making it so that we can't trust our own eyes or ears throughout their run-time. With the release of A Quiet Place, this can be seen more clearly than ever, as it utilises sound, - or rather, a lack of it - to convey intensity and terror simply through its play on our own experience of hearing.
There's plenty of other films that subvert this experience across the board, with touch, smell, and taste utilised just as effectively as sight and sound. Films that can make us feel the physicality of their craftsmanship hold a special kind of scariness in this sense, ingraining themselves in our primal human nature as much as just being a spooky watch. A monster that manipulates your very sense of being and warps everyday reality is one that will stick with you.
With that in mind, here are 10 films that mess with our human experience to the extreme, making us hold our breath, peer behind the cushion, and lean in closer with each play on our senses. Just be thankful Smell-O-Vision hasn't been invented yet.
Found footage filming can best best described as... divisive. Some love the jolting first-hand experience of camcorders, others are left reaching for the dramamine, but there's no denying the ingenuity of the style as its developed over the years. JeruZalem capitalises on the POV experience of found footage by taking the core idea to the next level, attaching its camera to the glasses of our protagonist in the form of Google Glass.
This unique viewpoint plays perfectly into our sensory experience of vision - as rather than watching recorded footage through the lens of a cameraman, we're watching directly through the eyes of our protagonist in a way that often hasn't been established so clearly. Voyeurism is taken to its natural peak with the progression of technology, and its as immersive as found footage can probably get.
Unfortunately, JeruZalem doesn't uphold its originality throughout the rest of the film's production, telling the tale of two American tourists in Israel when a biblical nightmare unfolds over the city. It's choppy and disorganised, and the effects are a bit silly - but that doesn't detract from the central genius Glass premise that sucks you into the narrative in the first place.
Great examples of immersive vision in this way can be found in the V/H/S franchise segments Amateur Night, which also utilises glasses, and Phase I Clinical Trials, which has its camera directly in ocular implants, but these don't define the entire film as in JeruZalem.