Sunday, May 24, 2009

Scary Scenes and Bizarre Reasons

I was browsing around on Freddy’s site, and one of his back entries made me think. It hurt, Fred, so y’know, thanks loads. He posted about not being easy to scare via movie, and listed the scant few that managed to get to him.

I’m the opposite; I have a really vivid imagination, and while that’s great when my C.S professor starts to drone on, it means that occasionally I’ll wake up in the night and my memory decides to play some really nasty tricks on me. Things that aren’t terrifically scary by daylight take on sinister shadows in the middle of a black as pitch bedroom, I promise.

As a kid I was particularly susceptible to night terrors brought on by all manner of things; I drove my older brother and sister nuts when I was in elementary school, because I was introduced to that time honored ritual known as Bloody Mary. I was literally afraid to close my eyes because I was sure that Bloody Mary would somehow come out of the darkness of my eyelids and get me. Now imagine what Jason Vorheese did to me. I was a wuss, I freely admit it, and horror movies were my Achilles heel, particularly because I had a real talent for walking in on them at the wrong time, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts.

But as a fairly convincing mock-up of an adult, I have acquired a taste for horror movies and drive my roommate nuts with them on a regular basis-- I’m pretty sure she’ll go to her grave cursing the existence of the Sci Fi Channel. As a result, not a whole lot scares me now, but when it does man does it hit me good. So here is a list, from childhood as well as maturity, of shit that kept me up at nights, and in a few instances, not sure where to look for safety.

#1 is from An American Werewolf in London. I saw parts of this around the time it appeared on vhs; my older siblings particularly liked it. I missed most of the bloodier scenes, but I saw the dream scene while far too young and impressionable. Here’s the weird bit, this picture terrified me, for years. I was afraid to look at anything with an edge, because I was convinced that would pop up at me. Weird, no?

#2 is from the remake of Dawn of the Dead (2004). That whole movie was a serious skull fuck for me; I honestly think I had heart palpitations the whole time, and I know that neither me, Bevin, or Malinda slept the night we saw this. I think part of it was because we saw it opening night on the first showing. There was a lot of buzz but I deliberately kept myself from any spoilers.

Big. Mistake.

I don't know why, but that movie about killed me. Bevin's not a horror fan, at all, so I don't think she's forgiven me to this day for that. The worst part though was the very beginning, the morning that it happens, when the main character's neighbor kid, Vivian comes in. I swear, the scene where she's thrown down the hallway and springs back up to her feet, I saw in my head over and over and over, especially when I was trying to sleep. This clip below isn't that great, but I can't find just that scene, so here's the trailer. The actual scene in the movie is much more tense, and you can really see how mangled Vivian's face is.

#3 is the face of Pazuzu that was "subliminally" inserted into the original The Exorcist. I did not see this movie until the summer after I had graduated from high school. I was the queen of watching up until the last minute and then hiding my eyes. Well the beauty of this film is: ya never see it coming! WOOOO! I had a fucking heart attack at the age of 18.

Interesting trivia: did you know that's actually a woman? An actress named Eileen Dietz. According to her page, she even has an identical twin which means, oh shit, there are two Pazuzus running around out there. Sleep tight, I know I will! The Pazuzu face has become a bit of a pop culture trope and has popped up in other productions. I tend to pee myself a lot when that happens. The worst was when I was reading an issue of Hellboy Weird Tales. Guess who!

Thanks, Jason Pearson! From me and my bladder, both!

That's enough for now; I need to go find my silky and hide under my covers for a little bit.


Johnny said...

Pazuzu! I've actually met Eileen Dietz! She was selling all kinds of products with Pazuzu plastered on them. I'll get ya a bottle of Paz tomato sauce if I ever see her at a convention again! ;)

Stac said...

Sweet! Thanks, Johnny! Then I can pee on the linoleum every time I look in the pantry!

I would consider it an honor. ;)

Roy said...

The scene that mind fucked me hard as a kid was the clown attack in Poltergeist. I do not have a fear of clowns, but if I did I would blame that scene. when the film first came out, my parents took me to see it because it was PG (how scary can a PG film be, right?) The movie was scaring me already but when that scene happened I screamed like someone just ripped my ear off.

In recent years the scene that made my heart skip a beat was the bus accident in "Final Destination". That scene happened and I actually felt my heart take a brief pause.

Plus "The Descent" had me on the edge of my seat THE ENTIRE TIME

Stac said...

Roy: Ooooh yeah, that fucking clown doll. I was SO happy when Robbie tore it to pieces-- vindicated!

I haven't seen Final Destination, but I totally agree with The Descent-- it was really good, but I dunno that I wanna watch it again any time soon.