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Maybe too clever? I don't know. Somehow whenever I think of numbers, it doesn't account for those other variables—the kinds we can't really measure. This is especially the case for the entertainment industry— particularly regarding media, such as literature, television, artwork, and of course, film.
You can't quantify quality, basically.
One person might like this movie, and another person might hate it. So when I heard that Netflix was able to come up with the top ten scariest films they're currently streaming based on a percentage, I wanted to take it with a grain of salt.
I, however, was pleased to see that there IS some truth to this idea that Netflix came up with!
After all, it gave rise to the phenomenon of one recent film streamed on Netflix sweeping the media landscape like wildfire: Veronica. A Spanish film with a 100 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes....and it honestly does deliver some pretty decent scares on top of the fact that the story's based on real events.
Netflix decided to research their own data due to the fact that social media went crazy over how many viewers seemed to not be able to finish that film successfully. It was just too scary for them. So some execs over at the streaming giant thought it would be cool to come up with their own top ten list of films that just couldn't be "finished" due to the amount of horror within the content.
Needless to say, that list is below. And you can catch all the trailers of these films here for your viewing pleasure (or pain).
'The Human Centipede II: Full Sequence'
Interesting list, don't you think? What's even more interesting is how Netflix came up with it.
Given that Netflix really is the master of their own data, how many times a viewer streams The Ridiculous 6, or what films don't get watched all the way straight through, or how many times someone watches an episode of Bill Nye Saves the World, it was easy for them to come up with the list based on just one percentage:
70 percent. That's the figure they went with.
They took a good, hard look at the horror films on their streaming slate and extrapolated the data to find the ones mostly not ever finished by viewers at the calculated percentage of 70 percent. Which is clever. Because you have to wonder: if someone is willing to watch at least half of a film, or 70 percent of it, you have to think that he/she is at least interested in it, but is just too terrified to finish.
This list features the top ten movies on Netflix that has that percentage of 70 percent. Ironically enough, the now iconic film Veronica hasn't made the list, and we can't figure that one out at all. It does beg the question, though:
Does not finishing the movie really mean that movie is just 'too scary?'
If you look at the list again—and perhaps view the trailers—you'll notice that a good portion of them really do push the envelope of horror in tremendous ways. Some, however, don't (*cough* Piranha *cough* Teeth). It makes you wonder if that metric doesn't necessarily mean that viewers were scared to finish, but could mean that they were just grossed out enough to just hit pause out of discontent and indifference.
"Scary" doesn't necessarily mean "difficult to watch." Like how I had issues watching the scene of A Clockwork Orange and seeing his eyes propped open. However, on the flip side, for me, that was both terrifying given the meaning behind the scene, and terrifying because of just the raw imagery and physical feeling I got from watching it. So go figure.
The important thing to note is that this list IS specifically about only films streaming on Netflix.
Not all films, as we're certain there are plenty of other movies scaring the beejezus out of many more viewers to the point that they may not just get up and leave, but keep their eyes closed for at least half the film. I would call that particular metric a more accurate measurement of horror than someone pausing the Netflix app.
....Now, if there was only some way to measure that action in theaters or in homes...we'd be on to something.