Film is an integral part of today's society and as such has developed clear patterns in terms of audience expectation. Audiences watch many different genres such as Horror, Sci-fi, Horror Sci-fi, Action Adventure, Fantasy, Thriller, Comedy and many more.
Audiences of the horror genre expect the pattern of spooky non-diegetic music, distorted camera angles to change the audience's view of the world there is often a dark, dingy, sinister setting as well.
In the sci-fi genre you expect to see spaceships, lasers, phasers etc. The sound effects and music of a sci-fi film has mysterious and bold music, there is also many sound effects such as zapping, explosions, humming and many more. The setting of a sci-fi is normally set in the future in huge cities or in deep space.
In a horror sci-fi you expect to see the genres horror and sci-fi merged together, An example of this could be a terrifying storyline set in the future with spaceships.
In the film "Sleepy Hollow" the director clearly establishes the film is a horror from the moment the action starts. Tim Burton starts with a close up of wax dripping on to a will that has just been written and signed, and then there is a close up of two people shaking hands. This suggests that some kind of deal is taking place, the wax that is dripping is red and at first it makes you think that it is blood dripping until the Van Garret crest is stamped into it.
When Van Garret is travelling in the horse and carriage there is a blur of the headless horsemen before Van Garrets chauffeurs head is decapitated this is a good effect because it doesn't show it is a headless horseman straight away so it keeps it fairly mysterious.