Okay, Spelunking Is Off The List

Watched The Descent last night. You’ll never catch me going down into a cave now. I was out of breath and claustrophobic even before the nasty cave folk showed up for the buffet. Great horror movie, though. It certainly did what horror movies are supposed to do. Not that it wasn’t without it’s too-typical horror movie moments.

Me: “Okay, see how she’s looking one way and there’s nothing there, and notice there’s no music or dialogue for fifteen seconds or so?”

The Missus: “I know, she’s going to turn around and AAAAHHHHH!!!

Me: “FuckFuckFuck!!!! I knew it! Fuckin’ A!! SonuvaBITCH! Aargh. Bastards.”

Even when I know it’s coming, the conventional spookem stuff manages to jerk me around like a…uh, jerking guy. I resent that a lot. I think ALIEN was the worst; I went to see that in the theater when it was released in 1979. I ruined a perfectly good hat and flung popcorn over three rows. Well, wait, maybe it was Jaws in ’75. I think I managed to break the seat in that one. And at my first viewing of Jurassic Park, when the T-Rex bent down to look at the kids in the car and roared, I think I inadvertently smacked the missus in the eye. I’m bad at watching horror movies, see? That’s why I don’t watch many of them.

The thing is, dread is more powerful than surprise. That’s why movies like The Silence of the Lambs linger in the mind. The Descent too, because in between those “BOO!” moments are those seemingly endless minutes crawling through the dark, claustrophobic moments with echoes and eerie music and the trickling of water on stone. Very effective.

The “BOO!” moments did manage to make me spill whiskey on my pants, though, and the cats became annoyed with all the flailing and yelling.

Ever notice that characters in horror movies apparently have never seen a horror movie? Else why would they traipse off alone into a basement/cave/sewer/funhouse even when they hear whispers/maniacal laughter/footsteps/power tools? I would never make a good horror movie character; I’m much more the “feets, do yo’ duty!” type, and as Cosby said, “You never see them get killed!”.

Anyway. If you like horror movies, I can recommend The Descent. Don’t sit close to anyone while you watch it, thus to avoid contusions. And don’t fling whiskey in your eyes.



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