[csaa-forum] Don’t Look Behind You: The Oculus Rift and Virtual Reality Horror with Adam Daniel

Sydney Screen Studies Network sydneyscreenstudies at gmail.com
Wed Aug 31 07:29:20 ACST 2016

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** Don’t Look Behind You: The Oculus Rift and Virtual Reality Horror
Tuesday 6th September, 5 - 7.30pm

** Room 327, Robert Webster Building, UNSW

The horror genre is the primary location for the recent synthesis between virtual reality and cinema emerging from new Oculus Rift technology. The radical potential of this new form presents challenges to existing paradigms that frame narrative and identification with character that are central to horror film. What is the particular experience for the spectator when vision is no longer represented as an implied character’s point-of-view, or in the manner of ‘found footage’ horror such as The Blair Witch Project (Myrick and Sanchez, 1999)? What are the consequences for horror spectatorship when a viewer is presented with a limited autonomy to ‘direct’ their gaze? What is it about this vivid and compelling cinematic mode that reveals new insights into the somatic aspects of spectatorship? Why are these insights valuable to a consideration of both the future of the horror genre, and the rapidly evolving forms of virtual reality cinema? The implications of this analysis are
considered in relation to the expected rapid expansion of virtual reality technologies into the home entertainment market.

Adam Daniel is a third year film studies Ph.D. candidate at the University of Western Sydney. He is a member of the Writing and Society Research Centre. His thesis investigates the evolution of horror film, with a particular focus on the intersection of embodied spectatorship, neuroscience and Deleuzian philosophy. a.daniel at westernsydney.edu.au

Refreshments will be served during the seminar.

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