jump scare

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search
See also: jumpscare and jump-scare


Alternative forms[edit]


jump scare (plural jump scares)

  1. (narratology) The technique, typically used in horror films and video games, of having something occur suddenly and without warning to frighten the audience.
    • 2011, Mira Grant, Deadline, Orbit (2011), ISBN 9780316134262, unnumbered page:
      They'd do something horrible, maybe kill off a few protagonists, and then make people sit around waiting for the next terrible thing to come along. They called it “setting up a jump scare.”
    • 2011, John Rosenberg, The Healthy Edit: Creative Techniques for Perfecting Your Movie, Focal Press (2011), ISBN 9780240814469, pages 80-81:
      Drag Me to Hell capitalizes on the jump scare, scattering it liberally throughout the film to the point where it becomes almost numbing.
    • 2013, Jeffrey Bullins, "Hearing the Game: Sound Design", in To See the Saw Movies: Essays on Torture Porn and Post-9/11 Horror (ed. James Aston), McFarland & Company (2013), ISBN 9780786470891, page 188:
      This quiet is broken suddenly with an initial jump scare of the puppet's iconic laughter.
    • For more examples of usage of this term, see Citations:jump scare.