Your most cherished horror memories...

Discussion in 'General' started by kyouki, Aug 6, 2017.

  1. kyouki

    kyouki New Member

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    Hey folks,

    Horror movies have been a constant companion of mine since I was a kid (though I only started really getting into them in high school). I would love to hear your cherished horror movie-related memories... stuff that has stuck with you for years and years.

    I'll go first :)

    One of my earlier horror movie memories was going to The Fair in Worcester, MA (where I was born and grew up). At that time I had zero interest in horror movies (I would go there with my Mom to rent Nintendo games), but when we brought games up to the cashiers at the front of the store, the walls were COVERED with posters for horror movies (they also rented VHS tapes). There must have been a horror fan on staff, because I remember being absolutely terrified every time I went there. I clearly remember posters for Basketcase and Parents, so whoever it was that chose the posters really had great taste in somewhat lesser-known horror flicks.

    A second fond memory is when I was in either late elementary school or early middle school. I had a friend who lived right next door whose parents had HBO. So you can imagine I was over there every weekend watching late-night HBO and eating chips. I remember staying up late one night and watching Friday the 13th Part V together, and that movie is still very nostalgic to me to this day. This has to have been the first "gory" horror movie I had ever seen in full (I remember hearing/catching glimpses of Alien and Cujo from my older brother's room), and I clearly remember thinking, hey, that wasn't so bad! Pretty fun actually! I also remember watching Grim Prairie Tales and The People Under the Stairs (ugh) at the same place.

    I guess my next exposure was when a cousin brought Evil Dead II over for Thanksgiving one year. At the time I didn't realize it was a horror-comedy (we only got to watch up to the part where Ash cuts his own hand off), so it seemed pretty terrifying actually. But more than that, I remember being really impressed with the effects, especially with the intro with the sea of blood and the stop motion Necronomicon.

    Other than that, it's just bits and pieces I remember from childhood.
    Watching Poltergeist II when I was very young and being absolutely terrified of it. I mean, I clearly remember walking home after that, finding that my parents were out and the door was locked, and then literally screaming and crying as I ran up the hill to another friend's house. I guess I assumed that the poltergeist had killed my family or something haha.
    Another was when I was in middle school and catching the very end of Hellraiser II at a friend's house cuz his older sister was watching it. I was extremely confused, but instead of being scared, I remember being intrigued by the lighting, special effects, and sounds.

    After all that, I eventually got a part time job at Media Play in high school. We got a really nice discount on VHS tapes there, maybe something like 30-40% off, and I remember going over to the movie area on my break and starting up with a conversation with an older guy who was working in that area. I don't remember exactly why, but for whatever reason I remember him recommending some horror movies, and that night I ended up buying 3 or 4 tapes... and that is when my obsession began.

    So there you have it. I hope some of you will post some memories here!
     
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  2. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    When I was a young kid my older sister once took me trick or treating. There was a family several streets over from us named Harp who treated Halloween the way so families treat Christmas, they went all in. In fact, they put on what we local kids called the "Harp House Of Horror". They turned their large back yard (which backed up into a pond) into a fantastic haunted attraction and along with the scary decorations they performed skits and played pre-recorded scary music, A stage was set up where a girl dressed as an opera diva was lip synching to an aria while a guy in Phantom Of The Opera makeup was slowly creeping up on her. Folks in well made monster makeups wandered through the yard and even The Creature From The Black Lagoon would lurk in the waters of the pond ! I vividly remember facing my sister and pointing over her shoulder as the Frankenstein monster was about to take her by the shoulders. Simultaneously she was pointing over MY shoulder as Dracula was leaning in towards my neck ! It was awesome ! Sadly the Police eventually put a stop to the annual event because so many people would come in for it from other neighborhoods that it would block traffic. So ended a local tradition.
    Cut to 20 years later and for the first (and still only) time in my life I drew jury duty and had to go down to the County Courthouse where I ended up sitting on a case for two days. Guess who was the jury foreman ? Mr. Harp, the family head and mastermind of the haunted house. I told him who I was and what his shows had meant to me and he seemed delighted that it had been a big event in my young life. I'm so glad I got to tell him. So often you don't get to thank people that were kind to you when you were a child, they just drift away. I was lucky !
     
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  3. kyouki

    kyouki New Member

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    That's an awesome story! I wish you had some pictures from back in the day!
     
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  4. The Joker

    The Joker Well-Known Member

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    When I was a kid, Halloween was a big deal to me. It kinda still is, but back then it REALLY was.

    Every Halloween (or a day or two before it), I would decorate my basement. We lived in a small row home in Philadelphia, and the basement was no larger than a spare bedroom. But we didn't really keep anything down there aside from a bulbous white General Electric refrigerator. It looked exactly like this, except not as new or shiny:

    [​IMG]

    The rest of the room was just open and dull looking. So I'd spend a few days printing out horror posters and frightening imagery on a dot matrix printer, then tape them up on the basement walls. I topped it off by cross-crossing the room in orange and black streamers. All of this was in preparation to invite a few friends over to watch a couple of "scary" VHS tapes at night. I'd lug the VCR downstairs (and you know those old VCRs were heavy), then a TV, hook everything up, and scavenge the house looking for snacks. My friends would arrive about 7pm, and we'd disappear into the basement, promising each other that we'd stay awake through more than two movies. It was rare that we did. But I distinctly remember pulling out The Changeling (1980) and making them watch it.

    Let me tell you, that main theme...in a basement, at night, will scare the shit out of you.

     
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  5. hellraiser40

    hellraiser40 Active Member

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    when I was 10 years old, I somehow managed to convince my much older niece to tape Hellraiser 1 from television. The night that I finally decided to watch that tape (with my parents around, who must have not known what I was about to watch) I became sick, because I had eaten a deepfreeze pizza that noon that wasn't fully defrosted. So after 15 minutes, I had to run to the toilet but didn't get there in time, so I puked on the kitchen door. Maybe not most cherished, but certainly most memorable :D

    most cherished must be first time watching Prince Of Darkness late at night (I think I was 12-15 then?), when it was finished I walked into a spare room at my house that had a man-sized mirror, almost shat my pants :eek:
     
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  6. Angelman

    Angelman OCD Blu Ray Collector

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    My earliest memories of horror were watching HBO in 1979-1980. The Shining, The Hearse, Alien, The Hand. I was only 6 but my parents let me watch more or less what I wanted. Those early films were powerful experiences. Especially The Shining, as the main character was a boy about my age. Later I moved to California and the local cable channels played horror uncut: Halloween and Halloween II. Hell Night. Then came Freddy which was the scariest thing I had seen to that point. And Sleepaway Camp!

    My family would stay up late eating nachos watching Squirm, Friday the 13th, etc. until the wee hours of the night on the local creature features that started at 10 or so. I saw Shock Waves there first, sparking a long love affair with that film.

    My local mom and pop store was the next step in my evolution as they had a surprising amount of Euro fare, especially for a small town. Make Them Die Slowly, Zombie. Cannibal Holocaust. Back then Make Them Die Slowly was the most awful, stomach-churning thing I had ever seen.

    A subscription to Fangoria followed, and the local theaters didn't stop me from watching R-Rated movies and when some theater owner would protest, my mom would walk up and tell them to admit me. Ironically she can't handle horror and like Hallmark movies.

    as horror died out in the theater and ended up relegated to DTV and cable in the early/mid 90s I caught all of those endless sequels and DTV gems. I was in college now, going to school all morn then working afternoons to midnight. I'd come home, shower, then watch some bad horror.

    Then came Scream. It's easy to hate on it now but it brought horror back to the cinemas in a big way. It was nostalgic, but also well-made. Right place at the right time.

    I moved to LA soon after and ended up working at a production company with a massive on-site library catalog films (and I had keys to the vault). I would take home horror every night to make up for lack of funds (and social life).

    In my 30s I got hooked on DVD (and later Blu Ray) and THIS site. I need to see it all. At this point, I just have to.

    Not to be too sentimental but horror has ridden shotgun with me my whole life.
     
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  7. Natas

    Natas ....on the warm side of the dooooooor

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    [​IMG]
     
  8. russweiss

    russweiss Well-Known Member

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    I grew up in the 70's watching Universal horror movies and 50's sci-fi on TV. In the early 80's I was able to convince my mom to let my brother and I buy a VCR. The first film we rented was the original Friday the 13th. I had seen pictures from the film in Fangoria magazine but at that point had never seen a "graphic" horror film. Needless to say we watched it twice before returning it.

    That opened the gates to renting all kinds of movies. When I moved out of mom's place I had a roommate and we used to go to 2-3 video stores on the weekends to rent films. I think the most we ever got was 12 films to watch between Friday-Sunday. I can't binge watch movies like that anymore. He is also the one that introduced me to laserdisc so I finally understood how much picture you were missing with pan and scan films. He had the Japanese import of Suspiria and we put that on for a comparison with the VHS. It was amazing to see that about half the picture was missing from the non letterboxed tape.

    I also used to attend Fangoria Weekend of Horrors in L.A. and the San Diego Comic Con. I've still got some nice pictures and autographs. This was before you could buy anything you wanted online.

    While I did sell off almost all my laserdiscs I still have a substantial collection of DVD and blu-ray. I've also picked up 14 UHD titles so far even though I have yet to purchase a 4k TV.

    Horror has always been a part of my life. I have posters, lobby cards, pressbooks, magazines and books on the genre. Over 40 years worth of collecting and still going strong. That is one of the reasons I enjoy this site so much. Other people with the same interests as me letting me know about movies I may otherwise have overlooked.

    A special shout out to Satans-sadists and Zbinks for all the wonderful information they supply to to all of us here. (There are many others too but these two stand out for me).
     
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  9. Angelman

    Angelman OCD Blu Ray Collector

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    First two movies I saw on a VCR were NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD and Plan 9 From Outer Space. Still love, and own on home video, both.

    Amen. Those two cost me a lot of money, but it is appreciated.
     
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  10. kyouki

    kyouki New Member

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    Great stories guys! Keep it up!

    Angelman, your mention of local cable channels reminded me of some great times watching horror flicks on the USA Network late at night in the mid/late 80s. I remember seeing Blood Beach on there, as well as some show that was showing clips from all these horror/exploitation movies... they showed some select scenes from Street Trash (even the severed penis scene). Good times!
     

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