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03 March 2009 @ 03:39 pm
25 Things That Terrified Me as a Child:  
[In no conscious order]

1. Pee Wee's Big Adventure - Large Marge. Those two rotten seconds. Of course, now I love every part of that movie, but when I was a kid, she was so scary. (Video)

2. Return to Oz - The Wheelers. There's a lot to be afraid of in this movie, but the Wheelers take the cake as the scariest things. (Video)

3. The Last Starfighter - Some alien or robot or something transforms into a decoy of the main character. At one point, it shows him mid-transformation, and he looks like he's melting or something. Gave me nightmares. (I couldn't find the proper clip from this obscure eighties movie. Blast it.)

4. Ernest Scared Stupid - Yeah, a scary Ernest movie. The troll turns kids into dolls. Specifically, there's a scene when a girl thinks there's something under her bed. She peeks underneath, and there's nothing there. When she comes back up, the troll is in bed with her. Oh man. So scary. (Children-to-dolls montage, however, the scene I mentioned isn't included)

5. Critters - That whole movie. For some reason, I always think of the scene where a man in an Easter bunny suit goes to relieve himself and a dozen critters jump into his open suit and grind him up. (Trailer)

6. Return of the Jedi - Rancor pit. I loved the rest of the movie, but I'd always fast-forward through this scene. (Video)

7. Alien(s) - I never even watched these movies until I was in my twenties. (Poor John Hurt)

8. Raiders of the Lost Ark - When the Nazis' faces melt. Had to fast-forward through that, too. (Look away!)

9. Temple of Doom - Human sacrifice is always scary. They ripped this dude's heart out. (Video)

10. The StoryTeller: The Soldier and Death - The devils in this episode gave me nightmares. I only saw this series when it first aired, but it haunted me for years. Then I bought it on dvd. (Video. Bonus! This marks the second appearance of a John Hurt project on my list!)

11. The Twilight Zone: The Movie - When John Lithgow opens the blind and sees the gremlin right there in the window sneering at him. It's so shocking and sudden. Man, that thing is still scary. (Video)

12. Stand By Me - Ray Brower's body. I don't know. Maybe it was that I watched it a lot when I was about the age of these kids, and Ray Brower would have been my age. Something about it really unnerved me. (Video at 6:30)

13. Laurel and Hardy's Babes in Toyland - The hordes of marauding bogeymen at the end brought to life a common childhood fear and multiplied it thousandfold. Seeing it as an adult, however I've noticed that there plenty more creatures in that movie that are much more frightening (albeit unintentionally). (Trailer)

14. Ghostbusters - The minions of Gozer. I didn't watch this movie much when I was young, but once these hellhounds appeared, I pretty much wouldn't watch until the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man showed up at the end. I guess I didn't get that it was a comedy. (Video)

15. Mr. Boogedy - Another booger-man. I have a specific nightmare where I'm going to the bathroom at my parents' house and I look down the stairs and see Mr. Boogedy skulking past the entryway. It's more this memory than the actual movie that scared me. (Video)

16. ET: The Extra-Terrestrial - Just the part when Gertie comes in and frightens ET and you can see inside his mouth and he makes that awful sound. (Video from crappy re-release with digital ET)

17. Sleeping Beauty - When Maleficent turns into a dragon. Having grown up in a religious household, seeing a character in a Disney movie invoking all the powers of hell is pretty terrifying. (Video)

18. Unsolved Mysteries - All the ghost episodes, but two in particular: One when a ghost was at a swimming pool, and its wet ghost-footprints appeared, and another when a haunted bunk bed terrorized a family. I'd slept in a bunk bed most of my life, so I didn't like the thought that bunk beds could be haunted. (The only relevant video I could find was this crappy clip. I'm really disappointed.)

19. Little Monsters - Some of those monsters are scary! Especially the main bad-guy monster, Snik. Fun fact! Howie Mandel, a germophobe, refused to wear makeup for this movie. That's really what he looks like. (Trailer)

20. The 'Burbs - Tom Hanks' nightmare. Human sacrifice again. Holy crap. This is like fifteen horror movies condensed into one scene. (Video)

21. Harry and the Hendersons - When Harry, strapped to the Hendersons' car roof, slides onto the windshield, his face wild with menace. Also, when George Henderson discovers him alive and in the kitchen and he's snarling and drinking milk from the container. I'm still a little afraid of bigfoot. (Video)

22. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad - The Headless Horseman is terrifying. Come on, he has no head, and his laugh is so scary. (Video)

23. Gremlins - I'm not sure if the creepier monsters in this movie are the gremlins or the furry things. I'm just now noticing a pattern: I didn't like small monster puppets. (Video.)

24. The Lost Boys - Kiefer Sutherland. And only Kiefer Sutherland, really. (Video)

25. Nightmare on Elm Street - I think the effect of Freddy Krueger has worn off over the years. He's become such an icon of horror that people have forgotten what it was like to be scared of him. Even his name. In the original, he was just Fred Krueger. Now he's Freddy, like an old pal. He's the hero of his movies, not the person who can kill him. We root for Freddy Krueger now. It's funny, because that's how he was ultimately defeated in the first Nightmare on Elm Street. Anyway, I was so scared of him as a kid. His face, his glove, the fact that he gets you in your sleep. I refused to watch any Nightmare on Elm Street movie for a long time. (Video)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Michaelidiotcontrolnow on March 4th, 2009 12:21 am (UTC)
This is such a ridiculous list. I should have been more worried about kidnapping or running afoul a bear in the woods behind my house where I spent most of my childhood, but these were the things that I was thinking about when I was too scared to sleep. Products of an overactive imagination, I suppose.
Michaelidiotcontrolnow on March 4th, 2009 12:22 am (UTC)
I also realize that this would be more appropriate a post around Halloween, but I was thinking about it now (and for the past week), and I didn't want to wait eight months to finish it.
girl_on_a_wiregirl_on_a_wire on March 4th, 2009 12:51 am (UTC)

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )