Horror [ hawr-er] –
an overwhelming and painful feeling caused by something frightfully shocking, terrifying or revolting; a shuddering fear
I watched my first ever horror film with my Mum.
It was Salems Lot which by todays standards is probably really rather tame. My first introduction to Vampires and the living dead. It starred David Soul who my Mum had a soft spot for, I guess in the same way I do about Bradley Cooper.
I’m not sure what either one of us was thinking as we both had very vivid and over-active imaginations. I can remember being huddled on the settee together, the slightest noise freaking us both out. I can remember I wanted a wee but daren’t leave my mums side. I can remember Dad coming home from the pub and scaring us both to death. I can also remember the amazing adrenaline rush being scared gave me, but also the sleepless nights it led too.
A few years later I was at my friend Sarah’s house and feeling brave we decided to watch bloody Evil Dead ; a film about a group of friends who go to stay in a log cabin for the weekend and all become possessed by evil spirits . Its horrible and it traumatised me for many years after.
Sarah lived at the far end of a very long street; one side was lined with houses and the other by a thick , dark wood. I remember the walk , or rather sprint home! I think I’d have given Usain Bolt a run for his money. I was like a walking cliché of horror situations – girl alone, late at night. Nervously scurrying past the woods followed by a walk down a long , dark alley. I still to this day have a panic attack if I see a log cabin in the woods… and just try getting me to stay in one!
So like I say why do I do it?
Well I don’t so much anymore … I find horror films play on my mind a long time after the final credits have rolled, I go over situations , trying to make sense of them, replaying the gory bits . It’s just not worth the sleepless nights. Give me a beautiful romantic musical any day. I prefer to skip happily out of the cinema like I did after La La Land. I loved that film.
After the film Halloween I refused to have pumpkins anywhere in the house…that was unless they were friendly looking. My pumpkin heads had to be all smiling, singing and dancing .
After Hell Raiser I was convinced that one night my bed was going to suck me up and spit me out into hell where Pin Head and the rest of the ghastly crew would do their worst on me.
I made my Dad come down to my house armed with his tool box after I had watched Black Christmas to check nobody was living in my attic. Seriously. I then insisted he fit a latch so that if there was somebody sinister lurking up there they couldn’t get down to wrap me in cling film and suffocate me. I’d locked them up there! Ha.
I had always fancied driving through America … but films like Wolf Creek and Texas Chain Saw Masarce put pay to that. Theres no way I was staying in any little back-wack places – they all be crazy ! And don’t talk to me about showers … after Psycho it was baths all the way!
Seriously … horror films send my imagination into over drive. I could scare myself senseless!
A guy I used to work with knew how I felt about horrors and found it funny to send me trailers disguised as spread sheets. I’d happily open them and then watch them ,horrified, right up until the very end. You see I can’t help myself. I don’t want to know what happens, but I do… if that makes any sense?
The same guy once sent me the trailer for Human Centipede which was a ridiculous film about a guy who kidnapped, then operated and stitched 3 people together … chin to bum … I know I really pity the one that got the bum end!
I’m not lying when I say it freaked me out. Rather than watch the trailer and take it for what it was – a slightly silly, fantasy – I had to look into it further and see whether you could actually sew people together and make a centipede. It was a hot subject at our house , until my Dad advised me if I didn’t stop he was taking me to see somebody … and by somebody I think he meant a shrink.
He still hadn’t quite recovered from the time I sought out a White Witch [ a friends Mum] to rid my house of the ghost that had taken residence. [That’s a story for another day] Mum and Dad called down to see me one night only to find every window in the house open. In the corner of each room I had placed the crystals, salt and holy water the White Witch had given me and as instructed could be heard half way down the street shouting ” PLEASE LEAVE , YOU ARE NOT WELCOME” in my loudest, most authoritative voice. Gawd knows what the neighbours thought?
I can laugh now … my Mum did at the time she found the fun in everything … but my Dad really was worried, he thought I was losing the plot.
I could go on but you no doubt also think I’m a banana short of a fruit bowl.
So you see nowadays I stay away from horrors its just not worth the stress … though saying that I am quite tempted by the new horror Mandy with Nicolas Cage…
Dare I? …
Dad you have been warned !