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March 18, 2015

Who You Gonna Call?: Paranormal Investigators in Spiritual Horror

Science explains most things that go bump in the night, but what of the things that are beyond known explanations? Enter the paranormal investigator—a surprising reality in an increasingly secular world. Amateur ghost-hunting groups can be found in most major cities by a simple Google search, providing fodder for thrill-seeking paranormal fanatics. As ubiquitous as ghost hunters have become what has been their impact on spiritual horror? The novels of Shirley Jackson and Richard Matheson invited the ghosts in, but the real investigators fed them. From Ed and Lorraine Warren to Hans Holzer, to modern-day, camera-in-hand ghosthunters like Zak Bagans, paranormal investigators have helped re-shape ghost stories into the demon-infested hauntings that horror fans crave today. This lecture will examine the evolution of spiritual horror and paranormal investigation through The Haunting (1963), The Legend of Hell House (1973), Amityville II: The Possession (1982), Poltergeist (1982), Paranormal Activity (2007), Grave Encounters (2011), The Awakening (2011) and The Conjuring (2013).

March 18, 2015 at 9:15pm
The Royal Cinema, 608 College St, Toronto
Cost: $15 at the door

Lecturer: Brian Baker

A strange experience in his early years set Brian Baker on a mission to consume all things paranormal. When he’s not sating his supernatural appetite through books, movies and TV, he’s plying his journalist trade as an arts reporter/columnist at the Town Crier. It’s there where he also pens a pop culture column called, The Blast Radius. In the past, he’s also spilled ink for the Toronto Sun and Urban Male Magazine.

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