In honor of the launch of Under Worlds Austin (a Horror Sidebar to Other Worlds Austin) each OWA staff member has written about the Horror movie moment that had the biggest effect on them. Write us a comment with your own Horror movie moment! And if you’ve made a Horror film, submit it now to Under Worlds Austin!
The Horror Movie Moment That Changed My Life
By Debbie Cerda, Programmer and Hospitality Director
There are a multitude of horror movie moments that influenced my life over the years, but the earliest and scariest moment that changed my life was watching the 1962 movie THE DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS at my grandmother's house when I was in elementary school. This film directed by Steve Sekely indeed invoked "spine-tingling terror" and melded the genre of science fiction and horror quite perfectly.
THE DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS was based on the 1951 science fiction novel by John Wyndham. The film stars Howard Keel as Bill Mason, a merchant navy officer who while recuperating from an accident, escapes a meteor shower that renders most of the world's population blind. The meteor shower also released spores of the Triffids, aggressive intelligent alien plants who begin attacking helpless people. Society begins to crumble, an apocalypse brought on by the invading carnivorous flora.
I wasn't exactly supposed to be watching such a scary movie, as I was still a bit young. But my mom and aunts were busy talking in the other room, so I watched from across the room as I played games with my cousins. The score built up the fear, while the sound that the Triffids made when they were on the move gave me goosebumps.
I was able to identify with one of the characters in THE DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS -- a young school girl named Susan, who had been rescued from a train crash in London by John Wyndham. As he and others battle their way through the plants, the tension builds. Watch the trailer below:
One scene shows the Triffids being lured away by the music from an ice cream truck, and to this day there's nothing more exciting and soothing to me than that sound. Now that I'm older, I can't help but think of Van Halen's "I'm Your Ice Cream Man".
As a longtime fan of horror, I am extremely excited that we will be offering horror at this year's Other Worlds Austin in our Under Worlds Austin category. I look forward to sharing more memories of my favorite horror film moments with our audience, including the classic horror of Roger Corman and William Castle and especially film adaptations of my favorite Stephen King novels.