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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spooky Time

Yesterday I made an exciting purchase on Amazon - I ordered one of my favorite childhood scary movies: Watcher in the Woods (trailer). In looking for images from that movie for this post, I got scared and had to stop for a bit. This movie, meant for children, still gives me the creeps. In the elementary school I went to, we were shown Watcher in the Woods as part of the curriculum in fifth grade. Ok, maybe it wasn't part of the official curriculum. It was just something the teachers did every year around Halloween for us older kids. It was a right of passage for us into the realm of scary movies.

One of my sisters, who shall remain nameless because I haven't asked her permission to tell this story, was a very obedient child. She was (and still is) several years younger than my brother and I, who are only a year apart in age. When my brother's turn came to watch this movie in school, he became as big a fan as I, and we rented it to watch at home with some friends. My younger sisters were told they were too young to watch it at that time. So my sister got it into her head that she was never allowed to watch it, and even told her fifth grade teacher, several years later, that she wasn't allowed to watch the movie. She was sent into the reading room for the duration of the movie.  This year I gave her permission to watch it so she's about to experience the scare of her life.

Each year around this time, I blog about some of the spooky movies I'm going to watch leading up to Halloween. Am I the only one who has a list of movies to get through in the month leading up to Halloween? That makes it sound like a chore, which it definitely isn't. I love watching these movies. I'll admit that none of them are overly scary - most of them fit more in the "family friendly" category because that's how I roll. (I'm a wimp.) This year, besides Watcher in the Woods, my list includes all my standards: The Changeling (still scares me), Hocus Pocus (confession, I already watched it in September), Ghost Busters (I also watched Ghost Busters 2 last year and it was funnier than I remembered), and maybe something like the Skeleton Key or The Sixth Sense.

Any recommendations for a semi-chicken like me for Halloween movies? What are some of your standards?

18 comments:

Katherine said...

For the record, I've known for years now that I was allowed to watch it, I just haven't gotten around to it... And anyway, Heather and I had WAY more fun listening to records on our Fisher Price record player in the front room while you and Sean watched your scary, forbidden movie. Also for the record, if the movie is anything like the picture you put in this post, I'm out!! Permission or not. ;)

My movie list has some of the same as yours - The Changeling (George C. Scott-style, not Angelina Jolie, of course!!!), Hocus Pocus (can I borrow that?), and some Halloween episodes of TV shows I have on DVD. And now, apparently, the once forbidden Watcher in the Woods...

Elizabeth Downie said...

Suuuuuuuuure! If you knew you could watch it, then why didn't you? Proof is in the pudding. (lamest comeback ever)

Emily said...

Oh my goodness. I just made the mistake of watching the trailer for this movie and now I am really scared. I'm such a wimp. I think I'll just stick to Twitches and Double Double Toil and Trouble.

Savd said...

I remember being horrified after watching that in Mr. Holzhauer's class!! I'm watching "The Great Pumpkin" (Charlie Brown classic!) and hopefully Hocus Pocus, and I highly recommend "The Haunting" with Owen Wilson and Catherine Zeta-Jones...not scary at all!! :)

Anne Elliot said...

Oh my goodness - Watcher in the Woods terrified me when I was younger. I made the mistake of watching the alternate ending that comes with the DVD a couple of years ago. If you are a little too scared after the movie, watch it, it will give you a good laugh.

My favorite Halloween movie is Mr. Boogety and Bride of Boogety. No Halloween is complete without these movies! :)

Elizabeth Downie said...

Sarah - I think the Haunting is really scary! I hate it!

And Anne, I almost included those two because they are SO GOOD, but I watch them year round. Great recommendations!

Katherine said...

Hey! Time gets away from you and scary movies go unwatched! It happens! And now that I've seen that terrifying trailer, it might continue to happen...

Limequat said...

Seriously, this movie scared me so bad when I was younger, even the mention of its name gave me the creeps.

I'm not a scary movie person, so I'm afraid I can't recommend any good ones. Just wanted to have your back on being scared of WitW.

lizzie mc.- said...

I like Disney's Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Harry Potter, Wallace & Gromit: The curse of the Were Rabbit, The Disney's version of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow.

I was just talking to Andy the other day and asked if he watched the Watcher in the Woods. That and Harry Potter are the extent of my fear factor. I'm perfectly content being a wimp.

Mark said...

I recommend this: The Other for a good creep-out any time of the year.

Or watch a presidential primary debate.

Elizabeth Downie said...

The Other looks interesting and scary! Thanks for the recommendation!

As far as the presidential primaries are concerned, no thanks! I'm just looking for a spooky movie, not a horror movie.

)en said...

Heeey, longtime blog stalker (blalker? maybe not), never a commenter...until now.

The two movies on my list:

When a Stranger Calls (don't judge). Just the right kind of scary in a cliche setting yet set in modern day. aka, the perfect movie.

and...

Dial M for Murder. LOVE THIS. That's the main reason i'm commenting. Grace Kelly is outstanding, as always. It's my favorite Halloween-time movie.

Savd said...

Oh my gosh, your new commenter reminded me of another great old film: Hitchcock's "The Birds"...you will *never* walk by a flock of crows/geese/sparrows without being a little freaked out. SOOO good!!

Elizabeth Downie said...

These are great recommendations! And Jen, welcome! :)

I really do want to watch all of these movies.... I'd better start soon!

Sarah, will I still want to walk in Bird Hills after seeing The Birds?

Sarah said...

E - You will absolutely be terrified of walking in Bird Hills. :)

Ben said...

Beetlejuice
What Lies Beneath
Something Wicked this Way Comes
Gremlins
Signs

One that's probably too much for you but extremely good is "Blood Simple" it's a classic and I watched it in my film class at school.

SAC said...

Watcher in the Woods I think does a pretty good spook job for what it is. We had it on tape as when I was young, and I remember being scared enough of if that when looking for another tape I wanted to watch, I would studiously not even look in the direction of where I knew the tape was. What made it worse was that also on that tape was a movie that I liked a lot, and every time I'd want to watch it, I'd have to screw up my courage and get a cardio workout trying to get the tape to the right spot to watch what I wanted....since it was right after Watcher in teh Woods. Before the days of the wonders of skipping provided by DVDs of course.

Liz said...

Watcher in the Woods terrifies me.
Another one that scares me is Lady in White, although I have a sneaking suspicion that its not actually scary.