Thursday, October 25, 2012

Wait Until Dark . . . The Ones that Scare Me

In honor of my favorite holiday,
I'm going to reminisce about the scenes in scary movies that always have always terrified me
(and still do)! 
Some are tame, others are downright horrifying.

Featuring MOVIE CLIPS!

Beginning with...
Wait Until Dark.

Have you seen this movie?
It used to scare the pants off me, and still kind of does, when it enters the final 8 minutes...

Audrey Hepburn at the top of her game, playing a blind woman tormented by strange men that believe she has accidentally come into ownership of a doll stuffed with illegal drugs.

This movie plays on the notion of darkness and her blindness, and in the climactic ending she uses her blindness to her advantage, shattering all the lights in her basement apartment so the intruder suffers the same weakness she does.

This is the moment that always makes me scream, even though I know it is coming (and watch the entire movie just to get to this point!).  Alan Arkin, the baddest bad guy since Norman Bates, has been stabbed and she thinks he is dead.  Until he friggin' leaps into the air off the floor and grabs her!

That's a good scare that makes you jump.

For a scare that starts out as terrifying, but quickly becomes absurd,
check out The Changeling's wheelchair scene!

Eli and I watched this recently (he had never seen it), and of course we both were half hiding under a blanket when this woman is wandering further and further upstairs in an obviously haunted house, but when an ancient wheelchair gets involved, well... it verges on humorous!

Skip to 2 minutes in if you're impatient.

Going really old school, I've got to mention Baby Jane.
This is one of my favorite movies ever! It is morbid and eerie and has the themes of Old Hollywood stardom that I love, and who can get over Bette Davis and Joan Crawford being co-stars that despised each other in real life?! Bette Davis actually said, unabashedly, of course,
"The best time I ever had with Joan Crawford was when I pushed her down the stairs in Whatever Happened to Baby Jane."
This is the movie with the famous line
"But you are Blanche, ya aaaah in that chair!"

What people don't realize is that both actresses were younger than the old hags they're playing onscreen, and they had to COAT them in prosthetics and makeup, which is why they filmed it in black and white (look at color stills, and you'll see why).
Anyway, here is one of the scenes that gives you chills and makes your jaw drop in shock and amazement.
It is just so grotesque seeing her dressed like a child, delusionally shrieking this song!

If that isn't enough for you, watch the famous impersonation scene as the old lush changes her voice..

Skip to 1:20 if you're impatient.

Of course, I have to mention some mainstream classics, like The Shining, The Ring, Poltergeist...

And I can't leave out my Hitchcock favorites...
The Birds.
The fact that there is no music or sound effects in this scene just makes it more awesome!
Psycho, of course.
Not sure why, but the staircase murder has always freaked me out more than the famous shower scene.

Indeed, a boy's best friend is his mother.

Ew, I just remembered a scene from The Sixth Sense that always makes me heart drop into my stomach.. When he is taking a wiz in the middle of the night and that ghost woman walks past him in the hallway..yikes!
And, of course The Haunting. This was one of the first adult scary movies my mom let me watch when I was a tween and it has stayed with me! I own the original from 1963 as well.

But for a scare that gets right into my bones and makes me fearful after the movie is over,
and for years to come, it is obviously the Exorcist. 
I read the book a few years ago and it is even more terrifying than the movie, and forever changed the way I see it.  I have a hard time watching Exorcist, and when I do, I usually only get about 30 minutes in, because I enjoy the suspense and creepy buildup of them not knowing what is going on (rats in the attic??), but after that, seeing a little girl suffering and all the disgustingness of it...well it isn't my cup of tea.  But the scene that scares me most is the spider walk...

The only new movie that has scared me more than this is Insidious, and that's not just because it is along the same lines as Exorcist, but because of the old woman ghost creature in it.  I had some night terrors when I was a kid and they featured an old woman similar to her.

Welp, that does it for today! I do love my scary movies, and this is only the tip of the iceberg.
I need to do some horror flick binges over the next week!

Happy Haunting...

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