As an element of drama, Aristotle said that catharsis is “A purifying or figurative cleansing of the emotions, especially pity and fear,” which makes it possible for the audience to connect with the subject and characters of the play. Without this connection, we might all look at a tragedy and collective say, “So what?”
But effective use of catharsis can be powerful and filmmakers know this all too well. Who hasn’t pictured themselves in one of the harrowing scenes of a movie and imagined how they’d react? The marketers are now catching up with the auteurs as this recent online ad for the remake of Steven King’s horror classic Carrie so amazingly illustrates. Rather than your standard reel of soundbites and quick cuts, we have here a brilliant piece of content marketing.
…and 46 million viewers (as of October 29, 2013) can’t be wrong.