What's *not* a cliche in horror movies?

Horror is a pretty banal genre at times. If something is successful in a movie it gets ripped off faster than you can say “Don’t go in that room!” For example, the spawn of Slasher flics that Scream “inspired” (I know what you did last summer and its sequel, Urban Legends and its sequel).

You know the attractive blonde is gonna die in the first 10 minutes just like you know she’s going to search the house with all the lights turned off and you know it’s gonna be the escaped psycho-convict/jealous boyfriend/guy everyone picked on/whacked out freako that was affronted by some of the people he killed. The slasher killer angle has been beaten to death; it’s just not scary anymore.

But what I want discussed is what isn’t a cliche? What elements in movies have not been copied over and over into yawnhood, what would be something original? What about the stuff that isn’t too terribly cliched because it serves a purpose?

Maybe it’s the camera angles in certain situations. Maybe it’s how it plays out, or the situation people are in. Sometimes the motive for the killer can be creepy; like The Ring vs. Urban Legends. Or the killer itself; again, The Ring. vs. Urban Legends. What makes Psycho and The Shining so scary but not Fear dot com?

Come on. I wanna get into the heart of what’s really scary in a movie that Mike Myers can never touch on. What element has not been rebashed over and over again? What’s not a horror movie cliche?

I don’t know…has anyone else does the vomitting pea soup thing again? (Not counting the Scary Movie 2 knock off, or that scene in the Sixth Sense- it not being in the least bit scary…)

Personally I think it’s the same thing as in a lot of movies…character development, or plotting, etc. Like with a good book, if a movie is well written, it usually turns out well. I’m not so sure it’s a specific element that automatically ensures a good movie.