Clearing the Air

“I’m starting to feel quite scared.”

The words of my friend as we pull up to see The Rocky Horror Picture Show in gold sparkled suits and a full set of makeup. I should probably also add this was 2pm on a Sunday in the middle of Manchester.

Whilst I could perfectly see why this could be quite frightening for two badly built introverts who were quite frankly pacifists, I wanted to add a hopeful possibility. So, I turned to them and asked.

“Are you sure that’s not excitement?”

They paused.

“You know what, the two emotions seem so crossed wired that I’m not sure anymore.“

Janet Leigh' performance in Psycho (1960)

Fear is an absolutely terrifying concept that becomes physical as it rushes through our body and it’s something we all experience from one time to another, whether we admit it or not.

Fear to apply for the job, to ask the girl out; to put our own needs first. Now especially, it seems like ...

The world is fuelled by fear.

As someone who manages GAD (Generalised Anxiety Disorder) I already struggled to socialise and complete mondain tasks, so when the pandemic hit, I found myself afraid to even step outside to make a simple trip to the store.

Whilst anxiety has had major surges throughout our population in the last two years it does affect people differently.

I personally interpret anxiety as a constant irrational fear that isolates me from connecting with those around me, so the cinema has always been a very comforting safe space for me; a shared experience without certain pressures.

There’s something particularly satisfying about horror movies though.

It’s as though my anxiety becomes validated by those around me, who are equally terrified; something I felt with the last cinematic experience I had before the pandemic was to shut all cinemas.