I’ve stolen today’s cue from Vinnieh, who popped up on my blog yesterday and commented on some of my horror posts. On nosing around his website, I found this questionnaire and thought it would be fun. And it is Halloween month, after all…
Thanks for the inspiration, Vinneh. I needed it.
- What is the first scary movie you recall watching?
I suppose Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)? I can’t remember the exact film but I remember becoming aware of characters like Freddy at quite a young age (8 onwards). I don’t think I was that frightened on first sight, because Elm Street had the comedy element down and I must have taken that away with me but now it makes me wince.
I’ve grown to fear these characters far more, and with Elm Street it’s the comfort and necessity of going to sleep that is taken away from Nancy and her friends, giving them no escape from the torment of the razor fingered one. One film that scared and still scares the living shit out of me is Candyman (1992) (which I’ll talk about again below), the whole invoking of a vengeful entity freaks me right out.
On review though, I think it’s the ‘real life’ threats that get me, like the thugs impersonating Candyman to rule the Cabrini Green housing projects. Also, when Helen wakes up on the kitchen floor of one of the apartments in a puddle of blood having killed a dog, I die every time. She has no control over her consciousness – and that’s terrifying.
I loved Wes Craven‘s The People Under the Stairs (1991), I also loved Hitchcock, Carpenter, Stephen King growing up. They coloured all the best childhoods I think.
2. What for you is the scariest movie you have ever seen?
Seriously though, I’m going to say that The Blair Witch Project (1999) scarred me for life, and I’ll fist fight anyone who pulls me up on it. It’s a masterpiece, was truly terrifying and shows you nothing at all. It’s your imagination that does all the work. So many films would have been better if they’d reigned it in the way BW did. That ending though.
3. Which sub-genre of horror is your favourite? (Psychological/slasher/comedy horror are just some to choose from)
Good question! I do love dark comedy horror, like the Evil Dead movies (II onwards). I recently saw The Greasy Strangler (2016) which was something else altogether.
I’m going to say psychological horror as it tends to be stronger and more satisfying, but I won’t avoid a slasher. I’m crazy about ghost stories to be honest, I like the feeling of being chilled to the bone and tripping over my own imagination.
(I think I just love all sub genres, don’t make me choose!)
4. What does a horror movie need for you to enjoy it?
It needs to not patronise me or trick me with cheap frights. I can get scared easily, you don’t have to have Noel Fielding dressed as a nun jumping out of mirrors every eight minutes to get me going, you know? (The Conjuring 2).
Hint, drop clues, get my imagination working overtime and I’m yours. Good examples are It Follows (2014), The Babadook (2014) and The Blair Witch Project (1999). The Descent (2005) is maybe a little less subtle but it doesn’t give the game away too soon and I love it for that.
5. Are there any horror movies you really detest?
I’m not a fan of the Hostel movies or torture porn in general. For obvious reasons I’m not crazy about rape/revenge tales either (Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes).
6. What is the sexiest scene you have witnessed in a horror movie?
I find this really hard to answer because I’m never thinking that way when I settle down to a good horror but I think the Candyman’s backstory (before he’s tortured and killed by angry villagers) is pretty hot. As is he to be fair. Worse ways to go than in his arms, I would think.
7. Who is your favourite antagonist in a horror movie?
I definitely have a soft spot for Norman Bates, Pinhead and the Firefly family.
8. Is there any director that for you symbolises the best in horror cinema?
George A. Romero, John Carpenter and Rob Zombie all different reasons. George for his sheer audacity with gore, John Carpenter for genuinely inventive films which have stuck with me all my life and Rob Zombie, who doesn’t always get it right but does always pay respectful tribute to the horror genre and you can tell he just loves the films he makes.
9. Blood and gore or creepy atmosphere?
There’s a place for both but the latter if pushed.
10. And finally, what do you think so far of my horror coverage this month?
I’m a new reader but so far I’m really enjoying the read!