The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Saturday December 4th

Why I would rather just cover my eyes

Haley Joel Osment infamously said, "I see dead people." I don't. I don't like scary movies. I don't get pleasure from watching zombies attacking, ghosts haunting or chain saws massacring. I don't understand why groups of teenagers end up locked in a cabin/house/hotel with some sort of psycho killer. How likely is that, really? And why do these outrageous scenarios seem to keep happening? Part one, two, three, or maybe even a paranormal prequel. As prolific as the genre may be, I've managed to avoid it almost entirely. It's not that I didn't give them a chance. The edited-for-TV movies seemed a great place to start. I figured I could get the general gist without too much gore and guts. These usually included one of the many "Scream" or "Child's Play" movies. I would curl up on the sofa, my finger anxiously resting above the remote so that when the first sign of fear or terror came forward, I could swiftly flip the channel to a more serene scene. But the escape route was too perfect, and I found myself enjoying the gentle comedy of Nick at Nite before Drew could even answer the phone. It was clear that watching a scary movie on TV was not going to work. Maybe I'd just been looking at the horror genre all wrong. Maybe the crazed sickos who like these movies have discovered that watching a scary movie is a specific kind of entertainment. What matters is the experience of being in a dark theater, surrounded by friends to share the terror. It can be the same adrenaline rush granted by roller coasters, the kind of contained fear that brings scares along with security. Too bad for me; I'm not much of a roller coaster fan either. I realized the only way to face my fear was to watch a horror movie the way it is intended: unedited for time and content and on the big screen. So I agreed to go with a group of friends to see "The Grudge" during Halloween weekend my freshman year. I can't tell you what it was about. Something with Sarah Michelle Gellar living in Japan, and there was a curse - and a seriously creepy little boy. I can't even tell you if it was all that scary since I don't have any previous films to compare it with. As the packed theater gasped, jolted and screamed in unison, I was crumpled behind the seat, hidden along with discarded drinks and sprinklings of popcorn. My pointer fingers were shoved in my ears while the rest of my fingers fanned across my eyes and face. I considered running to the lobby to wait out the rest of the movie, but the fear of what I might see if I sat up was enough to keep me in the fetal position. Since then, there has been a strict moratorium on my scary movie viewings. There won't be any serial killers, crazed clowns or possessed preschoolers for me. The dawn of my horror movie interest is dead. Contact Rachel Brody at


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