Thursday, March 18, 2004

Horrifying Truth

When it comes to horror movies, I'm my own worst enemy.

Growing up, my brother and I used to sneak into the back bedroom, turn the volume down low and watch whatever Friday the 13th episode was playing. And we wouldn't sleep that night.

Mom and Dad took us to see The House of Wax one night. It was creepy. It was 3D. It had a guy in a black cloak who went around kidnapping people and turning them into wax statues. Family nights at the movies being fairly rare, we enjoyed it greatly. And we didn't sleep that night.

I watched Salems' Lot one afternoon - with the summer sun shining brightly and no clouds in the sky, but the image of Mike Ryerson sitting in Jimmy's bedroom, hissing "Look at me" through gleaming fangs crept into my eight-year-old brain later that night. And I didn't sleep that night, either.

Now, being (sort of) an adult, the films still keep me awake at night - but not because of the scare factor (well - mostly. I still cover my eyes when the movie gets to the scenes when the knife-wielding maniac jumps out and starts carving up a couple of coeds). It's because, for some reason I can't stop watching the damn things when they come on late at night. It could be 3:30 AM, I need to be at work by 8:00, and I'm sitting there watching Dog Soldiers (which does feature a great scene of a soldier boxing a werewolf - I won't tell you who wins, but I wouldn't put too much money on the soldier) or Ginger Snaps, which in addition to having a clever name, features Mimi Rogers with a great how-the-hell-have-I-fallen-so-far? look on her face through the whole movie. However, all this "entertainment" means I didn't sleep that night.

Which brings me to my next horrifying dilemma - I want to see the new Dawn of the Dead. I know it's going to suck. I know it's probably going to scare the hell out of me - because when people jump out of darkened corners in horror films, I still jump, but I find watching armageddon enjoyable.

So I know it's going to scare me. I know I'm going to spend a good chunk of it looking away from the screen, but I'm going to put my $8 down so I can fling popcorn and soda in the air as I jump up shrieking like a little girl. And I won't sleep a wink that night either.

And yet, like a driver on the freeway who slows down to check out an accident, I can't look away.

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