I have kind of really gotten into my horror recently. The best horrors are the ones that stay with you after the movie ends and keep creeping up into your dreams. They make your eyes play tricks on you, when you see a shadow in the corner of your room at night. As I get older, this experience is getting less and less. However, when I was a child, this would happen to me, when the movie wasn’t even really trying.
Here are some movie moments that made me stay away from that film for a good few years. And when I watched them again years later, I realised they weren’t even scary. But they blew little Luke’s mind. If you can think of any more traumatising film moments, leave a comment below and I will check them out.
3 – INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE
In Indiana Jones movies, (if you pretend the last one didn’t happen, like I am sure you do), there is always one bit of extreme violence. In the first one, there is the scene when all of the Germans got their faces melted off. In the second, there was the scene when the guy had his heart pulled out by voodoo. These bits earned a squirm from young Luke, but the violence in the third movie just blew me away.
It’s the moment when the villain drinks from what he assumes is the Holy Grail, but he is wrong. The false grail then quickly ages him. One moment he is a young man (well, he was pretty old in the first place, but whatever), and then he ages to the point, where he is a skeletal figure. Then it keeps going until he is ash on the floor. I have no idea what it was about that scene. Maybe it was the fear in his eyes as his body just evaporated around him. But it just scared me away from the Indiana Jones movies up until I was about 14. And seeing as the Crystal Skull movie came out, I wish it scared me away that little bit longer.
2 – THE MUMMY
The Mummy is a pretty tame movie, even if it is about some pretty dark Egyptian stuff, like torture and what not. It is a pretty simple premise. A group of archeologists wake up an ancient Mummy, who tries to take over the world. I hope you can instantly understand why I was on edge for this film. For a kid, it is terrifying. The claustrophobic tombs and constant mention of scarabs crawling into your brain isn’t the nicest thing to settle into.
The moment that got me however was when the Mummy stalked the lone man who lost his glasses. This guy splits up from his group, when his glasses get knocked from his face. Blind, he stumbles around the floor, looking for them and in the background, you can see the shadowy figure of the Mummy hunting him, and taking his sweet time doing it. It is a pretty standard scene for any horror movie that wants to scare the viewer, but there’s a good reason for this: it works!
And when the Mummy gets to him, he rips out the guy’s eyes. It was gross and terrifying. I nearly walked out of the movie right there and then. And my punishment for sticking around? The second the Mummy hits civilisation, he tracks down this blinded guy that managed to get away and finishes the job. That is a terrifying thought to go to bed with at that age, believe me.
1 – TOTAL RECALL
At least with the other two examples, you can kind of imagine the writers hoping to give some poor kid nightmares. However, with Total Recall, this scene was hardly the goal, yet I was still terrified of this movie. For one, I am going to blame my parents for letting 11 year old Luke watch, what is not only an 18 rated movie, but one of the goriest eighties movie known to man. To be honest, the gore didn’t bother me (I was a kid born on Die Hard; I was born in gore).
No, what got me was the first minute of the film, when Arnie is sucked out into space. And then the awful animation begins, when his face inflates and just before it explodes, it cuts away. Anyone who knows what I am talking about knows that this is one of the most laughable moments in cinematic history. Arnie’s inflated face looks so stupid that you cannot help, but wonder how high the make-up artists and director was at the time of filming.
However, little Luke was terrified. I am not sure what it is. Maybe this idea of getting sucked out into space got to me. I am still a little scared of vacuum (or would be if I had to interact with it in the slightest, which I don’t). There’s just something about the emptiness of space and the inevitability of death once you are sucked out into it. I just know that that moment has stuck with me throughout my life and it is a damn chilling scene.