Saturday, October 20, 2012

Countdown to Halloween Day 20 -- 5 Memorable Horror Movie Watching Experiences

Occasionally, my thoughts and feelings about a film are inextricably linked to my experience viewing them; here are a few of the most prominent horror movie examples.

Friday the 13th Pts. 1& 2 -- I was probably 7 or 8 at the time I saw my first Friday the 13th film. My parents were out on the town on one Friday the 13th evening, and my uncle was taking care of me. This was during the brief period of time that we actually had a cable channel that was willing to go far enough outside of town to reach our farm, and since It (the capital I is no mistake, the name of the channel was It) was showing the first two films in the series that night, my uncle decided to take my two slightly older cousins and myself over to my house to watch them. Of course, the house was locked, and I was too young to have a key (although, to be honest, by the time the house burned down before my junior year of college I still didn't have a key), and so we were forced to find a way to open the never-used door to my bedroom just enough for scrawny me to slip in and unlock the back door. We got that TV on just in time to find out who the killer was in pt.1 and were halfway through pt.2 when mom and dad got home. 

Halloween III: Season of the Witch -- Largely decried as the worst of the Halloween franchise, Season of the Witch is probably the horror movie that freaked me out more than any other film I've seen, but that's largely situational.  I was probably in 6th or 7th grade at the time, and was staying up late to watch it on TV. Or, rather, I was trying to stay up late, but wound up dozing off.  I happened to wake up right at this sequence.  While it probably wouldn't have bothered me at all any other time, I was still half-asleep and unsure if I was really awake or still dreaming, and wound up incorporating the scene into my dreams as I dozed off again; in my mind, that sequence is about 1000 times more disturbing.

Nightmare on Elm Street -- This one is memorable largely because of when I didn't watch it.  My dad and his cousin had rented it when it first came out, and watched it while I was asleep.  When I noticed it sitting by the VCR the next day and wanted to watch it, my dad wouldn't let me -- the first and only time he'd vetoed a horror movie.  He said that it had gotten to both of the adults, so he was worried it would really freak me out.  Instead, he just related the whole story to me.  And then, just a week or two later, I was over at someone else's house and they had rented it so I got to see it after all; however, since I already knew the whole story, I was ready for every jolt.

Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors -- The only one of these stories that's not connected to my original viewing of the film.  Instead, this experience happened one Halloween season when my friend Rebel Monkey and I were having a Nightmare on Elm Street marathon.  As the films progressively slid down the "tongue in cheek" slope into utter ridiculousness we would increasingly turn to MST3K style commenting.  But the highlight of all of them was the so-bad-she's-funny actress who played the character Taryn; just watching her own special brand of over-acting made the movie worthwhile. At one point one of the other actors accidentally calls her "Turn," a scene which we reran several times trying to make sure we heard what we thought we heard. A few weeks later, when a group of us went to see the local production of Jekyll and Hyde: The Musical, we both noticed one particularly strikingly scenery-chewer, prompting us to look at each other and exclaim "It's Turn!"

13 Ghosts -- After seeing the 2001 remake of 13 Ghosts, the same group of friends who'd gone to see the Jekyll and Hyde musical got together to watch a DVD of the original 1960 film.  The DVD turned out to have the 3D version of the film but of course did not come equipped with any 3D glasses. Not to be deterred, we set about trying to construct our own makeshift 3D glasses out of saran wrap and some red and blue markers. The results were surprisingly effective, if slightly nauseating -- not because of the visuals, mind you, but because of the overpowering marker stench.

1 comment:

  1. These are such great memories...thx for sharing! I especially love your Dream Warriors experience!