Not For The Squeamish

In cultureShock, Entertainment by Erich Cella

I’ve decided that because of the amount of free time I have and the lack of a hobby, I would comprise a list of the ten most disturbing and blood curdling horror films that I have ever seen.

The Halloween season has inspired me to absorb myself in the illogicality and disregard for human life present in these films.

I’m sure censorship and the ratings system in this country are responsible for people craving the feeling to be revolted or aghast. I’ve narrowed the list down to five because lets be honest, most of these films are atrocious and not worth your time, but a select few are classics.

Not only do these movies kick you right in the gut but they gnaw at your sense of security and disrupt your comfort zone. You start to feel mortal or more vulnerable to your surroundings as you see the delicacy and fragility of human life.

There’s a bizarre voyeuristic tangible that we posses, as humans, that attracts us to blood or seeing someone being brought to the brink of insanity. The beauty of it, is that even thought it scares the hell out of us, we as moviegoers keep shelling out the cash in order to be frightened.

5) A Nightmare On Elm Street: Never has a movie about teenagers falling a sleep been so horrific and so clever at the same time. It has to be the most inventive fright fest ever produced, due to the notion you could be hunted down and brutally mutilated by someone who stalks you in your dreams.

Master of horror, Wes Craven, also gave his menacing character witticisms and dark sarcasm, that made his personality. Unlike earlier abominations that have flooded the silver screen, Freddy had long lasting appeal that made it possible to have an more appealing successful franchise.

Even Twenty years later you can never forget the waterbed scene where oodles of thick blood encapsulated the bedroom as it sprayed in an upward motion from the mattress after Johnny Depp’s character is savagely bludgeoned with Freddy’s infamous glove.

It may seem silly when you’ve reached a certain age but growing up it caused many sleepless nights.

4) Dawn Of The Dead: I’m referring to the original, George Romero version, that has become a cult classic, much like the original “Night of the Living Dead.”

With such a minuscule budget and difficult subject matter to tackle, it would take a make up effects guru such as Tom Savini, to step up the gore factor to another notch in order to better represent Romero’s vision. He succeeds in this department and delivers with comic book style violence that may be ludicrous but made you feel very uncomfortable.

This sequel takes place in a shopping mall, during the 1970’s, in which two newscasters and two S.W.A.T. team members take refuge but end up setting up their own death trap.

The zombies become more abundant and are brought to life with more color and personality this time around. There are many cliches and tired devices that are replicated from this film and exploited in many other zombie flicks.

An example of this, is the character who has been bitten by a zombie but the other members of the group insist on keeping him alive only to see him turn into one of the living dead.

Dawn of the Dead has an uncanny way to represent that as we see the character slowly evolve to his sinister form and then be put out of his misery.

While Torsos are being detached and heads are exploding you are actually more perturbed by the hopelessness of the situation or the thought that people just like you want you as a snack.

3) The Thing: This movie may slip into the sci-fi thriller classification but that doesn’t mean it’s not disturbing or immensely sustaining to the darker recesses of your mind.

The plot revolves around a band of scientists at a base in Antarctica who come in contact with a dog who was being chased by a group of Norwegians in a helicopter.

After the helicopter crashes and the Norwegians suffer an untimely death, the scientists are unaware that the dog has been infected by an alien species and may spread the infection to the scientists.

Most of the time you don’t even see the monster as you are drawn into the psychological drama and see the conflict arise from the paranoia building up in the camp. The fascinating aspect of the film would be the fact that alien can replicate its’ victim and acts exactly like that person, down to his specific mannerisms.

This doesn’t mean it’s not a gruesome film, When The alien shows itself it is extravagant and dreadful at the same time. The effects in this film are the most impressive ever produced as bodies are contorted in audacious ways and body parts are being ripped to shreds.

Kurt Russell and Wilford Brimley star in John Carpenter’s epic that has yet to be duplicated in terms of effects and claustrophobic sentiment.

2) The Exorcist: That little girl was more threatening than any other monster that has ever been created as Chris MacNeil’s daughter becomes possessed by an evil spirit.

It’s virtually impossible to escape the indelible imagery that was imprinted in my subconscious as an impressionable youth. The head spinning and overly exaggerated vomiting may be marred or dismissed as a pop culture reference but whenever anybody views the movie they are appalled by the graphic content and religious overtones.

With the combination of an eerie soundtrack and murky atmosphere it can penetrate you in a hard hitting fashion but that doesn’t mean it isn’t fun to watch. It’s not too prevalent in many horror flicks that the performances add to the story and the director flawlessly represents the idea that he’s trying to convey.

1) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: This film pretty much speaks for itself as no film has never captured fear or vulnerability like this one has.

A true story based on the life of Edward Gein (Leatherface), who chased down his victims with a chainsaw and would also torture them until they would reach the breaking point.

He would also use the flesh of his victims to create a mask that he would wear during his hunts. We do not see a large amount of blood but the methods that were used are appalling and unshakable.

The fact that the film was so low budget added to the realism and mayhem since it gave it a grimy unpolished look.

The acting wasn’t astounding but the horrified looks of the actors gave you an insight into the surrealism of the situation.

This is one of the only movies that I enjoyed but would never have the stomach to watch again.

What are your favorite thrills and chills flicks? Let us know at the Online Forum or send us an email at .