With Halloween fast approaching, I though I would sit down and make my list of my favorite scary movies, or at least, movies that scared me. A lot of this has to do with the age I was when I first saw the movie...things that scare you at 10 might not scare you at 30. I have always tended to go more for 'suspence' than straight gore or torture porn.
This list isn't specifically in order from most to least scary, but it is the order the movies popped into my mind, so that must count for something.
1. Poltergeist. I seem to remember this being the first REALLY scary movie that I watched. It was playing like 8 times a week on HBO, and my parents told me I wasn't allowed to watch it...but I snuck in a viewing anyway, and boy, was that a mistake. The clown under the bed, the steak on the counter, the guy pealing off his face...and the worst was the tree breaking through the window to drag the kid out of his bed. To this day I have an urge to cut down any trees within 20 feet of the house.
2. Jaws. Not so much the shark attack scenes, but for me the scene that made me jump the first 700 times I saw the movie was when Hooper was down inspecting Ben Garner's boat, and the head rolls out through the hole in the side of the boat.
3. The Ring. I watched this one when I was working off station for the Shipyard. I was working back shift, and they gave us the night off, so one of my buddies let me borrow it. 2AM in a dark hotel room is not the right time and place to watch this movie.
4. The Exorcist. Not much to say...a classic, and one of the best. For me, I think the scene where she impales herself with the cross is the most shocking...that, and split pea soup.
5. Saw. I know...I said I'm not much into torture porn, but one night my WIFE came home with this movie. She had read the description, and thought it was some kind of suspenseful crime movie. About 20 minutes in she said 'this is not what I thought it was going to be.' We watched it...the first 1 was pretty good...2 was okay, and think that was all I have seen.
6. Final Destination. Not so much flat out scary, as 'make you jump entertaining'. And so very creative in ways death WILL get you. The scene with the bus is amazing...not sure how many times I watched it in slow motion to see how they did it.
7. 28 Days Later. A good movie, and while they aren't really zombies, it's the standard to which zombie movies will be held. If the troubled version of World War Z can't be at least this good, then just don't bother to release it.
8. Alien. I think I liked Aliens better...more of a 'shoot 'em up action flick', but Alien was scarier. When they start looking for the escaped creature, and you realize it has grown, and grown, and grown...
9. Pet Semetary. First off...all this time, and I didn't realize that THAT was the way the title was spelt. Full of good jumps...and the scene where they cut poor Herman Munsters Achilles...ouch. I wasn't a parent when I first saw it, but it does make you think 'How far would I go for even the chance of getting my child back?' Up there with Misery as one of the better Stephen King movies.
10. The 6th Sense. Just a great suspenseful ghost story. It's the glimpses that get you, like the folks hanging in the gym. Haley Joel Osmet does such a fantastic job of acting like a frightened puppy the whole movie, and then...there's the twist. Anyone who went into that movie cold and says 'I saw it coming' is a LIAR. Most of all, they are lying to themselves. It almost made me feel bad for the folks that did The Others(which could get a spot on this list...better movie than Final Destination, but not as neat). I did see the end of The Others coming, but only because The 6th Sense put that idea on your head.