Wednesday, October 19, 2011

It's Just A Movie, It's Not Real...Right?

Author: Hot Ink Contributors

Everyone has that one movie that scares the ever-loving pee right out of them. And if you say that you don't have a movie like that, you're either a liar or a liar. Anyway, in honor of the Halloweeniest month of the year, we give you the movies that have made us unable to trust that everyone isn't an alien, afraid to be home, certain that our childhood heroes were delusional, and given us other totally rational fears.

John Carpenter's The Thing (the original 1982 movie, not the extra crispy 2011 version) is one of the scariest movies I've ever seen. A group of scientists stationed in Antarctica discover a shape-shifting alien is assimilating them one by one. The movie plays on several fears - the claustrophobia of the small, remote station, thousands of miles from any reinforcements; the paranoia of not knowing who is an alien and who is still human; and, biggest of all, the fear of some scary fucking monsters. The award-winning special effects were astonishing at the time of the movie's release, and they still hold up today - they managed to scare the crap out of me and actually kept me from being able to sleep after seeing the film. If you're looking for a good scream, The Thing will definitely provide. I'd just recommend watching with a friend. In broad daylight. - MelBivDevoe

Do you see that? The tagline? Because you were home. That is why The Strangers is terrifying and had me unable to sleep after viewing it alone one night. One of my biggest fears is a home invasion and I knew better than to watch. Especially since my husband was working nights at the time. I know, I'm a GENIUS. Anyway, you have James and Kristen staying at his parent's cabin after a night at a wedding and a bump in their relationship. Already emotionally and physically drained for the evening, the couple is less than prepared when three masked attackers stalk and terrorize them just because they were home. It's a movie that you'll think about at the least opportune times, like when you're alone at home or in a remote area, and you'll lose your shit all over again. Again, why did I watch it? - Pinky McLadybits

Return to Oz starts when Dorothy's family ships her to an institution where the doctor in charge plans to fry all the creative out of her with electro shock therapy. Yes, this is a kid's movie. Luckily, Dorothy escapes during a freak storm that whisks her back to Oz. Now I could spend paragraphs and paragraphs just describing all the childhood-haunting images that grace this movie: a witch who changed heads and locked Dorothy in order to "harvest" her head in the future, the Wheelers, creepy-voiced bad guys with wheels for feet and hands and death masks on their heads, and a needy Pumpkin-headed scarecrow who believes that Dorothy is his mother. However, the scariest part of this movie, and the thing that I only fully grasped as an adult, is that this movie fully believes that Dorothy is delusional. Yes, the big lesson that Dorothy learns from her time in Oz is that Oz is like Fight Club, don't talk about Oz!  The big lesson I learned is that perhaps all my favorite literary characters from childhood are merely delusional.  The thought of a poor grown up Fairuza Balk wailing away about her inability to return to her buddies the alive scarecrow and the talking lion while a bunch of stoic Kansans tie her down for another electro-shock treatment (you know it wasn't going to be a one-shot deal) is totally not going to haunt my dreams.  Thanks 1980s Disney. - Park

While my parents controlled my movie diet pretty well when I was a kid (the curse of being a first child), their restrictions on my reading material was much more relaxed. I got my hands on Stephen King books when I was around 10 and Salem’s Lot not too long after and my scrawny middle school aged self spent the next several years checking closets, under beds, and inching around basements until I could get to the light switch and then whipping around to make sure nothing was sneaking up on me. The idea of a super strong, super intelligent being with the power to fly, hypnotize, and turn itself into a bat all so that it could suck my blood and make me into a creature who had to kill to live was deeply terrifying since there seemed to be no defense against them. Then Twilight happened and my sanity was restored. Now I’m more worried that said vampire would want to write me poems than suck me dry.  - Rusty

I went with a group of friends to see Resident Evil, which most people can agree is not so much with the scary. Don't worry, this story isn't about that movie, that's just the movie we happened to watch that night. You see, a short time prior to that night, I had somehow managed to attend the premier of 28 Days Later, which I think we can all agree is SCARY AS SHIT.
Back to the night in question. After seeing 28 Days Later, even I was not concerned about watching Resident Evil, since I wasn't sleeping anyway given the nightmare fuel that was 28 Day Later. After we got out of Resident Evil, I had to drive my then boyfriend, Chris, up to his house in the mountains. I accomplished that task with no major incident, despite the fact that he lived off of a very windy, creepy road off of a slightly less creepy but equally windy road. I made my way back down the mountain to Grand Avenue, the main road in my tiny hometown. Grand is a fairly straight road, and it islonnnnnngggg. For the most part, Grand has no street lights and is lined on either side with sinister trees and old, decrepit farmhouses. Fun! One more important yet minor detail is that the street also rises and falls in little hills. Did I mention that when I got down to Grand from Chris's house it was about 1:00 AM?
As I was driving along this increasingly eerie-ass road, I rolled to a stop at a stop sign, which happened to be at the bottom of a little dip between two hills. As my car stopped, a white shape the size of a human head appeared in my passenger window. I screamed my head off and punched the gas, peeling out and swerving a little. Panting to catch my breath, I checked the rear view mirror to see what the nightmare creature was and saw nothing but another car that had just crested the hill behind me.Suddenly it all added up. When the car behind me came up over the hill, it's headlights shone in my side mirror, which then reflected in a white circle shape on my very dirty car window. Naturally, my brain interpreted this as a zombie attack. -Nepoleanita

How about you? What movies scare the beheebus out of you?


  1. Poltergeist traumatized me as a child. To this day I can't sleep if the closet door is open because obviously it will suck you into the world of the undead. The only movie that really freaked me out as an adult is The Ring. I was fine with the first 90% of that movie, but when the little girl demon crawled out of the TV at the end, I had a come apart. I guess Poltergeist still had some lingering effects, like "Scary shit comes out of the TV to get you". I slept with the light on for a week after that. I was 27. I'm not proud.

  2. Ha! Last time I watched Poltergeist I screamed like a crazed person when the clown attacked. And The Ring skeered me the first time I watched it.

  3. Did I mention that my parents had the exact same kitchen table and chairs that they had in Poltergeist? The ones that ghosts stack on top of the table. That movie really messed me up. I was afraid to sit down and eat. I just bought an older house, and on my first inspection, I brought my dogs with me, because if they freaked out, obviously there were ghosts.

  4. The Shining all day long. Those fucking creepy twins still freak me right out.