The Shining. Me and my cousins watched this together with other kids in a ‘piso-piso Betamax movie house,’ which is not really a movie house by the way, but an actual house. We watched this movie in somebody’s living room. You know what’s just as scary as the movie itself? My cousin whispering to my ear that that somebody is an aswang. Well, where I grew up, people old and young alike, still believe in things like this. It was only years later when I learned that it was more of an ‘in-laws not getting along’ kind of thing. And you know what, that’s actually a terrible thing to do, telling kids rumors like that. I haven’t seen this movie again since then. I might give it some time next Halloween. Or maybe not. I was thinking of putting a photo of the Grady twins on this post, but somehow, I couldn’t.
Pet Sematary. Few years later, one of my cousins rented this, either on Betamax or VHS. This one got me really scared as a kid. Well, I was always scared of ghosts when I was a kid. The scene where the undead kid slices his mom’s heel with a kitchen knife, that scene made me grit my teeth.
Videodrome. Fast forward to the time of internet and DVDs, I stumbled upon this movie one time I went to Makati Cinema Square. Thought the DVD cover looks rad, and the title I probably read about somewhere before. I’ve been to Makati Cinema Square a few times. But the last time I was there, there was a raid. A fucking raid — operatives wearing Kevlar, carrying M-16 rifles, going around the mall like they’re after the world’s most wanted criminals. So I went looking for the nearest exit with this really scary thought going through my head the whole time. What if an operative calls me and asks me to open my backpack? Inside my backpack is this Videodrome DVD. What am I gonna do? Throw away the bag and run?
Tucker & Dale Vs. Evil. One of the better horror comedies out there, alongside the Evil Dead movies, Slither, Shaun of the Dead. Maybe I saw this one on cable, or maybe from one of those cheap DVD collection of horror movies. No scary experience about this one, just watching movies at home for fun.
Re-Animator. I just bought this DVD from one of my favorite stores and I decided to watch it right away after I got home. Not only that, I watched it with the whole family. And it was the most weird and uncomfortable movie experience ever. The movie, which is about a med student who discovered a formula that could bring the dead back to life, has a fair amount of sex and nudity in it. There’s this scene where her boyfriend starts kissing Barbara Crampton’s character in the school hallway and she goes, “No, no, no,” and then cuts to a scene of her in bed screaming “YES! YES! YES!” with her boyfriend on top of her. You could probably imagine the funny look on my face while watching this particular scene. And this is just about ten minutes into the movie. And that’s not even the most embarrassing and horrifying part yet. If you’ve seen the movie, you know the scene I’m talking about. It was referenced in American Beauty.
The Gift. Going back a few years before DVDs were the fad, I saw this one in theater. Not sure if it was before or after the first Spider-Man movie. This movie’s cast includes Cate Blanchett, Greg Kinnear, Katie Holmes, a very intense Keanu Reeves, and even more intense Giovanni Ribisi. Unlike Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead movies (which I still haven’t seen at the time), The Gift is more of a supernatural horror mystery. And for what it is, it’s fairly good, I guess, though I haven’t seen it in a long time. Maybe I need to re-watch it. Because, if I remember correctly, this has one of the most frightening nude scenes in all horror movies. It probably scarred me for life — didn’t know boobs could be so scary.