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12:54 p.m. - 2001-10-23


I love scary movies.

The first scary movie I can ever remember seeing was Disney's "The Shaggy Dog".

I doesn't sound that scary. But when that kid looked in the mirror and white fur started sprouting out of his face ... lemme make sure you understand where I'm coming from here...I shit my pants. I was maybe five years old and as I sat there glued to my theater seat, the shit just started flowing. That movie scared the shit out of me.

"The Ghost and Mr. Chicken" was another one that gave me nightmares as a kid. Sure, it's a Don Knotts comedy...but there's some pretty creepy moments in that film if you're a little kid who's prone to shitting his pants in public.

I just got back from Coconuts, where I bought the DVD version of Stephen King's "Salem's Lot". I've been meaning to get the DVD for a few months now and it was on sale for Halloween ($8.99...WHEEEE!!), so I picked it up. I've only seen the film once...when it was originally on television in 1979...and it freaked my ass out then and hopefully will again in the next few nights.

Anyway...with all this talk about scary movies and Halloween coming up, I thought I'd touch on some of my favorite horror flicks and the memories I have of them.

My all-time favorite scary movie was "The Exorcist". Jeezum Crow...that thing scared the crap out of me ... just ... not literally. My mom took me and my friends to go see it because we had heard all the hoopla about it and we just HAD to see it to see if we could make it out alive. I remember having butterflies in my stomach before the lights in the theater went down and wondering if I should REALLY stay and watch this thing. The movie started and the panic set in. I wanted to cry and just bolt out of the theater several times but I was 14 and with my buddies and that wouldn't have been too kosher. About ten years ago, Susie and I watched the movie on video with some friends and we all got plastered beforehand because most of the women hadn't seen the movie before. By the time we put the tape in, we were all drunk and the movie was funny as hell then. We couldn't quit laughing at it. I own the DVD now and tried watching it last summer, but it was back to being creepy again and I couldn't finish it.

FAVORITE SCARY SCENE: Too many to name. The vomit scene creeped me out. And towards the end of the exorcism when she's broken out of her restraints and is sitting on her bed in the cold night air and the priest is on the I'm going to have nightmares just thinking about it.

"The Evil Dead"freaked my ass out something fierce. I was still living at home and had a VCR in my bedroom when I rented that one. I watched it in my room real late one Friday night and could never really determine if the movie was a comedy or a horror film. All I know is that I went to the kitchen afterwards and rather than stumble through the dark as I normally did in the middle of the night, I turned the lights on and slept with the light on in my room that night.

FAVORITE SCARY SCENE: When one of the zombies is trying to come up through the trap door in the floor and just screaming like a maniac. Damn. That'll raise the hairs on your balls.

In its day "The Omen was pretty damned freaky. I saw that in a theater and nobody really moved a muscle the whole time. Watching it today is no big deal, but at the time I think America really thought that the devil's son could be walking among us. He was. We now refer to him as Leif Garrett.

FAVORITE SCARY SCENE: When Damien's nanny hangs herself from the roof of the house during his birthday party. She has a serene look on her face as she says "I did it all for you, Damien!" then she jumps, jerks and crashes through a window. Ewwww.

Gawd..."The Shining"....Jesus, Mary and Joseph, that movie was creepy. The elevators full of blood...the dead twin girls, the naked ghost woman in the one room...I went and saw that film four times in one week when it came out. Scared me more and more each time.

FAVORITE SCARY SCENE: When Scatman Crothers is quietly walking through the hotel and Jack Nicholson jumps out from behind a post and axes the Scatman in the stomach. At the time, I had the exact post memorized (I think it was the fourth post he passed) so I wouldn't leap out of my seat like I did the first time.

"Dawn of the Dead" was just a great movie. Not necessarily all that scary...just kinda ... believable, I guess. Four people...stuck in a mall full of flesh-eating zombies and how they survive. I remember the special effects being the most awesome thing about this film, including a guy getting shot in the head and his head exploding and a guy standing up and having the top of his head sliced off by a helicopter blade. The music is horrible, the cinematography is gawdawful and the acting is painful. But the story was great.

FAVORITE SCARY SCENE: When one of the four guys is bitten and dies. Then he slowly comes back to life as a zombie. You're kinda waiting for it to happen, but it's still creepy.

"Halloween"was a helluva movie to see in the theater when it first came out. At the time, it was the original "Teen Scream" movie where teenagers were killed for being promiscuous and I was a horny teen who almost went celibate after seeing the film. The first time I saw it was in a small, family-owned theater whose owner went to the trouble of hooking up several strobe lights throughout the theater and during the last 10-15 minutes or so, he turned those on and left them on. It was the only time I've ever had that happen in a theater and even though it didn't really do much for atmosphere and became annoying after a while, I still remember it being done. I think the film still holds up well today and is still as scary as it was then, although I can't STAND that Dr. Whatshisname and his hammy acting.

FAVORITE SCARY SCENE: Let's see...when Michael comes crashing through the car window at the mental institution...when Laurie backs up against a darkened door frame and you slowly see that Michael is standing right behind her...and when she thinks she's killed him and collapses crying in the doorway...only to see him rise up behind her, still alive. (Shudder)

I went through a period where I loved horror films mixed with comedy. Some movies that mixed the two genres perfectly were "An American Werewolf in London", "Fright Night", "Tremors", and "Return of the Living Dead" . I highly recommend all four of those if a normal horror movie is too taxing on your nerves.

Two scenes I will never forget are the endings of "Carrie" and the original "Friday the 13th" which basically hook the viewer into thinking they're watching something calm and serene when it's actually a dream that a character's having. Both scenes include a person coming up from either a grave or a lake...and both people come up REAL quick. When I saw "Carrie", I was on a double date and when the hand came up from out of the grave, I jumped up, hit my knee on the chair in front of me and fell to the floor. I think I handled "Friday the 13th" a bit better.

I could go on and on about my love for being scared. But I've gotta go back to work.

So if you're at the video store and looking for something a bit creepy to watch this Halloween, remember what your dear ol' Uncle Bob suggested and rent those.

...And thank me later.

Oh yeah...a question...

What's the Scariest Movie YOU'VE Ever Seen??

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