Film Bits: My first scary movie

The Ring (2002)


Although I still sometimes plug my ears and watch a horror film unfold while peering through my fingers, I still enjoy watching this genre. This has not always been the case, however. Around the age of eight, I did not possess the liking I now have for horror movies. My older sister and cousin had a scary movie marathon one day at our house, what they considered a brilliant idea. I wanted to provide I could roll with the big kids, so I reluctantly agreed.

After heaping blankets into piles on the floor, we shut the door to our living room and shut the lights off. When I requested we keep at least one light on, as if that would somehow lessen the scariness I would soon endure, my sister and cousin assured me the small ray of light seeping through the curtain would be plenty enough. They wanted a spooky atmosphere, after all, and the fact it was daytime gave us a false sense of security.

20170210_holmberg_mugshots_petterson_11We first watched “Darkness Falls,” a film I found horrifying. But it was no match for the following movie, a movie that scarred my eight-year-old self: “The Ring”. I’m not sure which part terrified me more. Perhaps it was Samara, the creepy child villain with long, black hair in tattered clothing whose daily routine included crawling out of wells and through people’s TVs. Or how the characters had zero control over the fact that they will die in seven days. Not to mention the graphic scene of dead horses. These images were seared into my mind for days after watching the movie. To this day, even hearing the title gives me slight chills.

After what my sister and cousin considered a “fun marathon,” I found myself jumping at the sound of wind and sprinting from different parts of the house if the lights were out, just so Samara wouldn’t grab me with her dead fingers.

Though I became introduced to a deep-seated fear of horror movies that day, my overall appreciation for horror films also began to blossom. I guess that’s the silver lining that came out of that day.

If you are over the age 8 and don’t mind being mildly afraid of your TV and other electronics for a few days, “The Ring” is an ideal movie choice for you.

-Sam Petterson

The Ring (2002)

At seven-years-old, I watched a woman slowly climb out of a TV. Her skin was pale and slim and her hair was black and wet. I couldn’t see her face, which was the worst part. Was she smiling? We’ll never know. If I had seen her face, I don’t think I would have been as scared. I don’t know how she could see where she was going because of her hair in her face.

20170210_holmberg_mugshots_holmberg_14I was in a hotel room in Manila, Philippines, hiding behind the curtains. I did the classic peek-a-boo game during the scene. I could have easily hid my eyes behind the curtain, but couldn’t help but peek during the slower parts. We weren’t allowed to watch scary movies or TV in general. So when our hotel came equipped with a TV, we decided to take advantage of the situation.

This turned out to be a bad idea, and for years that scene replays in my nightmares. But now, I wake up thinking how ridiculous the whole thing is. A slimy girl with black hair chasing me around? That’s weird.

If you like only watching half a movie, or hiding behind curtains, “The Ring” is for you.

-Carlo Holmberg