Thursday, August 04, 2005
does anyone remember karen black?
i am having a nostalgia trip these ten minutes. i was sitting here thinking about scary movies and she came to mind.
i HATE horror movies. i can't watch them without barricading myself behind something or someone. i KNOW it's a movie, I KNOW that just out of shot there were cameras, director, set crew and the coffee runner picking his nose.
but i still have absolutely NO trouble suspending my disbelief. in fact, the belief is all there. [unlike theatre, which i don't like. i like movies because i guess it is so escapist]
i am the person who could not watch the ring. i couldn't even get through the first two minutes. i had to turn it off. then i was pissed off that i had rented this thing and couldn't watch it. so i turned it on again, muted the volume, watched a bit while fastforwarding it so i knew what was coming, then would rewind a watch it first with no volume, then again with very very low volume.
i watched the whole thing three times - once fast forward and then again twice. it's a good way to desensitise yourself. it's also a good way to fuck up any kind of sequencing and flow.
the earliest movie i remember that scared the shit out of me was by all accounts a disney-type comedy with don knotts. it was called the ghost and mr chicken. he had poppy-out eyes, and big lips. from memory he was a reporter and spent the night in a haunted house [to get the scoop?] the scene i remember was seeing the portrait of lady so-and-so hanging above the staircase in this grand house. during the scary sequence when mr chicken is running out of the house after being spooked by organs etc, he runs past the portrait and she has shears sticking out of her chest, and there is blood oozing down. freak out!!
then there was a series in fairly rapid progression when i was just on the cusp of womanhood so about 10/11/12] -
jaws - it was so full on. i read the book too and that was pretty scary
sybil - my MOTHER took me to see this. i don't know why. she was studying psychology at uni then and perhaps thought it would be good bonding? maybe she had a professional interest. scenes that are burned into my psyche:
sybil's mother molesting her with a crochet hook
sybil wetting her pants while tied up to something and seeing the puddle forming on the ground
sybil jumping around her shrink's office, flitting from one personality to the next
mum has since apologised. actually i think she says that i asked to be taken, and that she had no idea what it was about
next one was tommy. i saw this with my cousin, and it was so freaky weird. my young brain could not process it. images that are seared into my memory:
tommy [roger daltrey] being put in a sarcophagus with needles by tina turner
someone's uncle singing a song about paedophilia called something like "fiddling about"
probably the worst of the lot was trilogy of terror. it was on tv and completely freaked my brother and me out. i don't know how old i was, but i was too young. or maybe not. the worst scene for my delicate brain was when this tribal doll came to life and started chasing karen black around her apartment, trying to kill her with this tiny knife. it would be thrusting the knife under doors, etc, until she tried to drown it [didn't work] and then i think burned it and the smoke possessed her and she became evil:
actually she used to look pretty evil even before she would get possessed.
i know i haven't mentioned the exorcist. yes it was scary and i even did a book review on it in year 9. but there are lots of other scary movies that have freaked me out, but these are the top handful that i will never ever forget. and never ever let my daughter watch until she is 25.