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October 30, 2015

What Are The Scariest Movies, Books, & Stories?

I can't say it's the scariest movie of all time, but The Conjuring was the last movie I was really scared by, and I kept turning it off at night because it was making me feel... not good. Interestingly, there is no cursing, no sex, no "mature themes," and only the briefest shots of blood and dead things, but it got an R- rating anyway: for "terror." They can't point at why this kids aren't allowed to see this, but it's so scary they're slapping an R on it anyway.

That's quite an advertisement. (I don't disagree, by the way: Kids shouldn't see this. It will give them nightmares, for years.)

Another recent movie I thought was just great was The Strangers.

One odd thing about my idea of "scary" is that I don't really think supernatural stuff is scary. Usually I just think it's kind of fun and dumb with some occasional pop-up shocks.

What scares me is just murder. I'm bothered especially by movies that take an almost lighthearted view of murder, like this movie that used to plague the the Channel 7 Midnight Movie slot in NYC.

And then there is the music around murder. The music and stingers in Murder on the Orient Express are just stuck in my mind as frightening noises. The flashbacks of the all the deaths in the past, with those scary music cues... always gives me a little scare.

And speaking of scary music, while the movie itself isn't so good, the opening sequence, and then the super-scary music, of Francis Ford Coppolla's first movie, Dementia 13, is great. Very scary. (Like I said, rest of the movie, meh, though I was surprised at what you could show back then -- nudity, decapitations.)

As far as books: I'm not sure I've read a really scary book. I thought Misery and the Shining were kinda scary. Again, the books that actually scare me are just books about murder.

Oh -- I did read one that was very weird, and so was kind of scary -- House of Leaves. Before you read it, though, make sure you check the description, to read how weird and experimental this book is. It's very odd indeed.

Any recommendations?

BTW: I'll put up a Hounds thread later, or maybe just wait for tomorrow.

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posted by Ace at 05:33 PM

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