I have always been a fan of scary stories. UFO's, ghosts, spontaneous combustion, angels, monsters and anything in the "supernatural" realm. I was so excited the one year at Christmas that my mother bought me the entire encyclopedia of the unexplained. I consumed Stephen King novels like candy in junior high (but I no longer read his books, enough is enough.)
Basically I would read these books under my covers and really freak myself out. I tend to lean towards the conspiracy theories and will listen to any argument about the existence of any "unproven" event or entity. Who am I to say that the Chupacabra or Bigfoot doesn't exist?
So being scared is obviously something I am comfortable with. Or WAS comfortable with. In our desensitized existence, I can watch movies about death or murder or other horrible acts and not awake screaming in the middle of the night from terrors. (If that isn't a commentary on society, I don't know what is!) But anyways, my point in this post is that my perspective has changed and I am becoming much more sensitive and generally freaked out.
I blame this on being a parent. Not to say that people who don't have children aren't legitimately scared by the same things... but certain "scary" things stick with me much longer now that I worry about the welfare of small little people.
Below is a list of the most terrifying movies I have watched, some with all new meaning as I define myself as a mother:
(In order of ability to give me nightmares of least to greatest):
1. The Hand That Rocks The Cradle: This is an old one... but damn, if it doesn't freak you out more as a wife and mother.... I feel skeevy all over thinking that another woman would try to breastfeed my child as a means of manipulation! Ewww, ewww, EWWW!
2. Contagion: Yes, the concept has been done before. World wide epidemic, no cure. But this movie was portrayed very realistically and since I live in a sea of germs, it is horrifying to think how quickly my family would succumb to a virus. This particular virus started with a hacking cough that is eerily familiar to the cold I maintained a few weeks ago. We share drinks; boogers are everywhere: there isn't enough hand sanitizer or Lysol to save a family with three kids.
3. The Good Son: I thought you were so cute, McCauley Caulkin! But seriously, what is a parent to do when they find that their kid is a psychopath? Because it happens. For real.
4. The Lovely Bones: (this should also be on the Caution! Very Sad Reading Ahead list) This film makes me want to teach my kids to view every adult as a predator until proven innocent. I am not, don't worry, because a paranoid life is not a happy one. But still....
5. Paranormal Activity 2: The other two movies in this trilogy were scary indeed. But they pale in comparison to the trauma of imagining your baby being tormented and then kidnapped by a demon. We watched this movie shortly after moving into this house and I was freaked out for weeks. New house, new noises and my kids wake up at very ominous hours of the night. 3:33... both Elliot and Jackson are awakened at the same time on different floors. And I am supposed to be brave enough to get out of bed and comfort them?
There could be an entire line of horror movies geared towards parents. I am already there! What seemed scary about ghosts and goblins and aliens from space take on a whole new dimension as a parent. Am I alone here? What movies would you add to the do-not-watch list for parents?