The trend-setting super scary short film that launched a million imitators.
Lights on. Lights off. (Scary figure visible) Lights on. (Scary figure is gone) Lights off… repeat. This trope is so powerful, it goes right to your alligator fear processing portion of your brain. The jump scares are so effective, and the feeling is so primal that director David Sandberg was able to parlay this into a full-length feature film produced by New Line, which was pretty good. (Though I like the brevity of the short film better.) It’s 2 minutes and forty seconds of perfectly timed spooks! You know you have something powerful when the stodgy publication The Atlantic is covering your work. Here is the original short film in its entirety: