Welcome to Horror Movies In The Dark!

Horror movies. No other genre can garner such fervent reactions from people. Emotions ranging from disgust, shock and revulsion, to amusement, joy and laughter. I’ve personally experienced the gamut of feelings over the 30 years that I’ve been watching horror movies, but no nightmare or terror or abhorrence can keep me from them. I’ve often wondered why people, and more to the point why I, love horror movies the way we do. I don’t think anyone can challenge the protests of people who can’t stomach them, but what is it that keeps horror audiences coming back for more? One theory is that people who watch horror movies are sensation seekers. They crave adventure and danger, a taste for something unusual, perverse and exhilarating. But given that most of us are normal people with average jobs and loving families, our real lives don’t come anywhere close to being that thrilling. So we experience those emotions vicariously, in the safety of our homes, through the intensity of the horror movie. 

It’s hard to be objective when you’ve been watching horror movies for as long as I have. To me, horror movies are more about atmosphere, tone and experience, than they are pulse-pounding methods of excitement. It’s always a welcome surprise when I get scared from a horror movie but that rarely happens anymore.

In 1985 I was 7 years old and while spending the night at my best friend’s house I watched my very first horror movie. The movie was 1980’s Prom Night starring Miss Scream Queen herself, Jamie Lee Curtis. My best friend and I lay on the floor in front of the television, we were wide-eyed and scared and eating popcorn and candy with the lights off as we watched beautiful teenagers being picked off, one by one, slaughtered on the day of their prom. I was hooked. We both were. And from that day forward we would watch horror movies whenever we had a sleepover, sometimes to the frightened objections of our other little girlfriends. But that didn’t stop us. 

Historically not many people have shared my passion for horror and over the years I’ve become accustomed to watching the majority of them alone. I turn off the lights, light candles, pour myself a glass of wine, make popcorn and settle in with my cats to watch teenagers run for their lives, stealthy creatures decimate populations, or unknown viruses turn good folk into crazed killers. It’s only in the last decade that I’ve finally met a few people who enjoy horror movies (almost) as much as I do, most notably my best friend, Natalya. Over the course of our ten year friendship we have established a horror movie night once a week wherein we pick one or two movies, drink wine, smoke hookah and eat popcorn and candy and heckle the night away. They are some of my favorite nights.

I have nightmares near constantly. I dream of zombies and Apocalypses, horrible creatures and crazed stalkers, satanic cults, epidemics and hauntings. Just last night I dreamt that Jason Voorhees was stalking my mother and me in my childhood home. I looked out the window, it was dark, and he emerged from the woods slowly, very slowly, walking across the front yard and coming to stand under my bedroom window. He looked up at me, giant machete in hand, and just stood there unwavering. I ducked down quickly and when I peeked out again he was gone - and then there was pounding at the front door. I woke up, heart hammering, terrified and having to pee. When I got up from bed I looked out my bedroom window, which is ground level, and was convinced Jason was going to appear. I’m not immune to getting scared or having nightmares, I just happen to like it.

Horror movies are my passion and through this site I will share with you my thoughts and critiques on the movies I watch every week. Sometimes I will watch them alone or with friends, while drinking wine or eating dinner, with cats on my lap or while folding laundry… the company and the situation surrounding watching a horror movie may always differ but one thing will always remain the same, I watch my horror movies in the dark. 

~ Heather