It’s pretty well known that children scare much easier than adults, but sometimes a child is so sheltered from things like horror movies, death, ect. that when they see things of that sort, it sends them into a state of catatonic shock. From age 4 to age 13 (13!), that kid was me. I got a pretty good grip on cuss words from an early age; Everything else, not so much. So to celebrate a holiday that doesn’t scare me nearly as much as it did 8 years ago, here are five examples of movies that ruined my childhood, whether they’re actually scary or not.
- Jaws: Ok, so this is actually scary, and is considered to be one of the better films to be given the “horror” tag. That said, the manner in which I was introduced to this movie is a story that deserves to be told. My parents were going out to dinner, but were unable to find a babysitter, so for the first time, they allowed my brother and I to stay home alone. The doors were locked, we were given a list of numbers to call, and we were given a pizza and two movies from Blockbuster (Or Blo-Buster, if you read it with the burnt out lights). The movies were Toy Story and The Nutty Professor. We put in The Nutty Professor, and the first thing that showed up was a shot of a beach. What I thought was the beginning of the movie was actually the very first scene of Jaws. The entire first scene. To promote an anniversary DVD. With death included. After witnessing the most traumatizing preview ever, I went into my parent’s room and didn’t come out until the next morning. Thanks a lot, Jaws.
- Ghost Ship: My experience with Ghost Ship occurred when I was eleven and staying at my grandparent’s house. With all of the bedrooms filled with other family members, I slept on the couch in the basement. This was normally fine, as I could stay up late and watch TV, but on this particular night my dad decided to channel surf at about ten at night, and for some reason, decided to stop channel surfing right at Ghost Ship. Let’s just say that this scene did not bode well with me. [Warning: That link is very, very, very gory. This warning is mostly to my mother.] The next time my dad channel surfed while I tried to sleep on my grandparent’s couch? He watched Jaws. Yeah.
- Child’s Play: No surprise to you by now, dolls scare the shit out of me, and that’s all thanks to me watching Child’s Play one night on Halloween when I was seven. I started from the middle, so I didn’t see the living doll until the famous scene where the mother checks the batteries. More props to my Dad for coming into the living room while I was watching it and simply saying “Chucky! What a great movie.” and then leaving. Ten minutes later, Chucky was screaming and beating a woman and I was covering my head with a blanket.
- Tremors: Another horror film that’s more silly jokes and eaten civilians than actual horror, but thanks to all the other experiences I had with monster movies, I decided to sit the first half hour of Tremors out, at a get-together being held by a childhood friend. When I finally ventured into the basement where the movie was being viewed, I saw an Asian storekeeper get destroyed by a sand worm. I was twelve years old. In case you’re wondering, the first time I watched a horror film successfully was The Omen. I was 16, almost 17 years old. Oh yeah!
- The Mummy: The low of lows. This isn’t even a horror movie to 99.9% of movie watchers, but thanks to an accumulation of the previous movies, and plenty of other encounters with things that wouldn’t scare most three year olds, I spent the entirety of this movie in the kitchen of my friend’s house, able to hear the movie, but not see it. Little did I know that the killer beetles were unrealistic and fairly cheesy. Little did I know that the “gore” of the film was just a bunch of shriveled up people. Little did I know that this film was Brendan Frasier’s attempt to be an action star. Thankfully, I’ve rebounded from my pussy ways since those dark times, and can now watch most horror films with little trouble at all. That said, I’ll let you know if Marble Hornets makes me revert to the old days or not. [A few hours later: Ok, Marble Hornets will give me nightmares.]