Saturday, May 8, 2010

What Was Your First Scary Movie?

What was the first scary movie your parents let you watch? Or the one they wouldn't let you watch but you did anyhow? You know the one, it scared you half to death promting you to check in the closet, under the bed, and sleep with the light on for weeks after.

 Mine was "Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte".  I was about 8 or 9 years old and I watched it on TV with my Mother (big Bette Davis fan).  It scared the daylights out of me.  I had to sleep with the hall light on for weeks.  My Mom was so mad (because the hall light kept her awake) that she told me "No more scary movies, ever!"  Uh, yeah right!

I thought I was the only one who would be scared by a classic black and white film from the sixties.  But in the past few weeks I have had two other people mention this movie as the first scary film that terrified them out of their wits.  I found that amazing and it prompted me to do a little digging with interesting results.

The movie was filmed in 1964 and starred Bette Davis, Joseph Cotton, Olivia de Havilland, and Agnes Moorehead.  It was nominated for numerous Academy Awards.

It was filmed on location in Louisiana at an old sugar plantation right outside of New Orleans.  The house is still there and open to the public for tours and even weddings.  You can even tour the room that was used as Charlotte's (Bette Davis) bedroom in the movie.  It is a beautiful old mansion filled with history.  The name is Houmas House.  They have a good website.  If you check it out be sure to click on the ghost story link.  There are a few cool stories.   I like the one of the little dark haired girl dressed in blue that is supposedly seen descending the stairs.  There was a family graveyard at one time but that has sadly disappeared over the years.

I definitely recommend seeing this movie if you have not.  It is my favorite type of film; classic and old fashioned scary.  However if you are more a Freddy Krueger type of person it may seem lame.  My favorite part, the one that scared me the most as a child, was the head rolling down the stairs.  I have to laugh now at the part because compared to today's special effects it appears so mild and fake.  But that is what makes it a classic.  Finally don't blame me if you have to sleep with the hall light on.

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