Scary: Introduction

Posted by on Dec 16, 2011 in Scary | 0 comments


“As a child I always wanted to sit
in William Castle’s lap, not Santa’s.”
– John Waters

There were a lot of memorable scary flicks I remember seeing during my childhood, but none quite as enchanting as the forbidden fruit that were the titles in the rated ‘R’ horror section.

Usually housed in a separate area of the rental store (I have a particularly vivid memory of a store from my childhood where they reserved and blocked off a dark corner for horror movies and put up fake castle walls and demeaning gates) like the porno movies of yesteryear, the covers of these movies said it all. They often promised blood and gore with a sharp blade somewhere in clear sight and boasted figures such as the cartoonish Freddy Krueger, doll-from-hell Chucky, surly hockey player Jason Voorhees, or cutesy animals like the Ghoulies and Critters.

While I didn’t see these films as a child, it was the novelty of not being able to that had such an impact on me. I suppose you could say they left everything to the imagination and those creepy images started my young brain cranking, which made me create my own scary stories and led to countless nightmares. I wouldn’t find out until later that many of the covers served as impeccable-looking shells for the unbearable crappiness often hid inside.

Those horror covers unknowingly taught me that my own imagination often creates something scarier than a film can depict. The first time veteran director Arthur Penn (Bonnie and Clyde) went to the movies, he hid under his seat and didn’t go to another for 10 years. That’s the power of film and imagination and, thanks to some clever writers and filmmakers, a couple of the scary films listed go along those very lines. Others accomplish something just as bold – telling a story from a perspective that kids could empathize with and, in turn, makes them urinate their beds.

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