This part of the list is true to the sense of the word horror. Each of these movies gave me nightmares, even #3. It would freak me out if I saw dead people. So, on with something that resembles a horror list.
3. The Sixth Sense
1999 Gross = $672,806,292
2010 Gross = $882,150,000
M. Night Shyamalan did not disappoint with the first of his movies that I saw. At the time I wasn’t looking for the little clues, but after watching his commentary, I started noticing things. Since then, I look for the clues in his movies. I do like his homage to Stephen King and Alfred Hitchcock by putting himself in the movie, albeit very creatively. Sometimes it takes some looking, and you don’t want to blink, but when you find “Waldo” it’s so satisfying. So, true to form, ghosts make for a scary movie, especially when they are terrorizing a kid.
1975 Gross = $470,653,000
2010 Gross = $1,911,140,000
When a film can do the opposite of Psycho, which made people afraid to take a shower, this one cost beach towns a lot of business for years to come because people DID NOT want to go back into the water. Unfortunately, I was not old enough to see Jaws in the theater. I keep hoping that our local theater brings it one day, as it has several classic of late, so I can experience it the way it was intended. This movie gave me, and still gives me, scary dreams! Spielburg is a genius! They hoped to show the shark for bigger scares, but because “Barry” was not so cooperative, they used that music. You know it. The cello from hell? Yeah. When two simple notes can make the hairs stand on the back of your neck whenever you hear it, then that’s horror. Fear of the unknown/unseen can be the scariest thing ever!
1. The Exorcist
1973 Gross = $441,071,011
2010 Gross = $2,170,120,000
When I was 13 years old, I grabbed my parents ottoman, a bag of popcorn, and a large Dr. Pepper, and sat in our back room one foot away from my 13 inch television, glued to this movie. I was so enamored with the story and couldn’t wait until the scary parts. When the infamous head spinning scene came, I was not prepared for that voice! My dad thought it would be funny to flicker the lights at that moment, and needless to say I had a mess of popcorn to clean up. Scared the living hell out of me!
The Exorcist is, by far, the scariest movie I’ve ever seen. I’ve only watched it in full a handful of times. I haven’t watched the re-release that had the director’s cut with the “spider walk” scene. I can’t do it. The voices, the make up, everything is just horrible. I purchased the book last year at a used book sale, and still have it hidden in my closet, afraid to read it. This from the woman who read The Amityville Horror in one night at age 12. When I found out this was inspired by true events from the 1950′s I was aghast! I still watch the mini-documentaries about the making of this movie. Even though I know it’s pea soup, and how they did it, I still have a hard time with those projectile vomit scenes. This movie is the only reason I take my hat off to the folks who compiled this list.
I still find it interesting that there are some movies that are missing from this list. I found a chart of the top grossing horror movies by the year they were released and wondered why they weren’t on this list, considering they made a buttload of money on the small budgets they had back then.
I propose this, take out the three obvious non-horror movies, and replace them with three films that were high grossing, had huge audiences, and influenced the genre (even revived it and then some).
And I present you these movies… after these brief messages from our sponsors.