Saturday, September 25, 2010

My Top 10 Willy Inducing Moments

So I was reading Andre Dumas' Horror Digest blog a few months ago, and saw her list of what she calls "Willy Inducing Moments".  Or maybe I read the one on Kindertrauma first...either way, I thought to myself "now THERE'S something I'd like to do".  It even inspired me to start writing my own blog. So I put it off.

Now that almost 3 months have passed, I've finally found the time (sandwiched somewhere between watching reruns of Destination:Truth and Hoarders and playing Red Dead Redemption) to create a list of my own.

This may seem to be somewhat obvious, but THERE ARE SPOILERS in this list.  I'll be using pictures from the movies I list, and I don't know why on earth you'd want to see them and spoil being scared when you finally get around to seeing the damn things for yourself.  But I hate having things spoiled, so I wouldn't want to do that to you.  At least not without warning.  So here it is...I don't think this is in order, just a list of 10.

1. Lake Mungo.  Probably the most recent movie on my list, and definitely one of the more understated.  If you haven't seen this yet, don't read anything about it, just get it and watch it.  I'm not saying the remake is going to suck, but I won't say it's not going to suck either.  Awesome ghost story, and this particular scene made me excrete masonry.

2. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.  Probably the oldest movie on my list (no, I'm not bothering to make sure), and one of my all time favorites.  One of the few on the list that's scary/creepy/disturbing throughout, rather than in a scene or two.  There's much to choose from here, but the scene where Leatherface slams that metal door shut gives me gooseflesh every time.

3. Calvaire.  This is a strange, strange movie.  I suppose it qualifies more as weird, maybe a little disturbing, more than scary.  It creeps me out big time, though.  The granny throwing herself at Marc at the beginning is bad enough.  The innkeeper who kidnaps him and attempts to make him into a replacement for his dead wife is worse.  The scene that finally is truly frightening, though, is when the local yokels take it upon themselves to use their experience in pig fucking towards fucking him.  In a word, eww.  Yeah, maybe it's Deliverance mimicry, but something about it is even worse, or know what I mean.

4. Poltergeist.  I don't know anyone over the age of, say, 12 who hasn't seen this movie.  It's got a lot going for it in the trauma department.  Not bad for PG.  Dope smoking parents, killer trees, face ripping, Zelda Rubenstein, goldfish flushing, floating muddy Indian corpses, you name it...but I'm sure I'm not the only one who was only truly scarred by this little bastard.

5. Pet Sematary.  Hey, speaking of Zelda, here she is.  The first time I saw this, in some theater in Monterey back in the late eighties, I almost shut my eyes to avoid dealing with her.  My heart raced, my mouth went dry, and my skin crawled.  Absolutely horrifying.

6. [REC].  Hey, speaking of Zelda, here she (kind of) is (again).  Seriously, though, while the final scenes of  this excellent Spanish horror film can be dissected as sort of Silence of the Lambs meets Pet Sematary meets 28 Days Later and Evil Dead 2 or some such, it's better than the sum of its parts.  I'd put the last 10 minutes of this movie up against the best 10 minutes of any other horror movie in terms of delivering the Willies.
7. Mockingbird.  I expect no shit from anyone for putting this in my list.  Mainly because I don't think a whole lot of people will be reading it, but also because it does in about a minute and a half what most "scary" films can't manage to do in their entirety.  If you haven't seen any of the Fewdio/Daywalt Fear Factory shorts on YouTube or elsewhere, I recommend that you rectify that post haste.  This may not pack much of a punch if you don't have kids, but it works for me.

8. The Strangers.  I confess, I may too have been caught up in the hype a bit with this one.  It's not that the first part isn't good, it's just that it gets kind of stupid and stays there way too long before it's over.  That being said, though, there's a moment towards the beginning that brings the creepy quite nicely.  It's a very well executed portrayal of those moments when you feel like you're not alone when you're at home by yourself.

9. The Exorcist.  I think what's so effective about this movie, so very long after everyone and their mother has seen it in at least 2 or three versions, is how relentless it is.  It's vicious, and stressful to watch, and graphic.  It's beautiful, really.  But there's one part of this movie that freaks me out more than any other, and I didn't even really pay enough attention to notice it until my second or third viewing...aided by the magic of a crisp dvd pause function.  Gaaah.

10. The Blair Witch Project.  The undisputed champion of Love It/Hate It.  I'll leave it to better thinkers and writers than I to tell you why you're wrong if you don't care for this movie - here's my favorite:
But anyway, you know it, you love it or you hate it.  Me?  It gives me the damn Willys.