Monday, August 22, 2011

Why I don't even bother to see scary movies anymore...

I promise that this post has at least some literary content. A tiny bit, but it's there.

So you may have noticed that Daniel Radcliffe aka Harry Potter is going to be in a new movie, "The Woman in Black". This is causing me much distress because as much as I want to support Daniel Radcliffe because he portrayed my beloved Harry Potter, I have serious issues with this film, the play that the film was based on and the book that the play was based on. It basically comes down to the fact that it scares the crap out of me.

In July of 2007 I went on a 3 week study abroad trip to Ireland, England, Wales, and Scotland. It was extremely fun, I had been to England, Wales, and Scotland before but never to Ireland and that was the main reason I wanted to go on the trip. My grandmother's father was from Ireland and the story goes that his brother died on the Titanic come over to America (I later found this to be false, I was doing some genealogical work and the records and names didn't match up, apparently my uncle had found this out too but neglected to tell my mother). Anyways, I feel a strong connection to Ireland, wanted to go, and so I did. It was amazing, one of the best trips of my life and I think about going back every single day.
This is me at the Rock of Cashel.

Anyways, after Ireland we crossed the Irish Sea and traveled around a bit and ended out stay in London. That was where I saw the dreaded play. I didn't have very many shows on my list to see whilst in London, so when the professor asked if I had anything in particular I said "We Will Rock You" (the Queen musical) and whatever else. It was impossible to get tickets to Equus (with Richard Griffiths and a naked Dan Radcliffe) so I didn't really care what I saw. She got me tickets to "The Woman in Black".

A group of us went out to dinner and then took the tube to the theater. I'm very glad that it was a group of us because I went to see "We Will Rock You" by myself and I would not have been able to make it through the entire play if I was by myself. Basically the play is about an older man who has written a play of his life which he takes to a younger actor to see about having it performed. It's kind of a play within a play that way. Anyways they go about acting out the script which tells the story of a young lawyer having to deal with the estate of an old woman who had passed away. He travels to a town that is haunted by the Woman in Black, a spectre that brings bad luck and death to all who see here. I won't go to much into the tale, you can read the plot summary if you like on wikipedia. It's a very accurate description. As someone who was heavily involved in theater in high school I'm pretty knowledgeable and aware of how things are done on stage. I know that it's fake and there is a crew member or some sort of machinery that is causing a  rocking chair to move or doors to slam. I know that it's a P.A. system that magnifies the Woman in Black's scream. I know it's all fake. I. KNOW. THESE. THINGS. And yet it still scared the crap out of me. So much so that I jumped out of my seat and grabbed the guy next to me's leg and broke skin. With my non-existent nails that I constantly bite, I broke the skin! There is a twist at the end that really freaked me out (see the wikipedia article) and I think it was the twist that allowed me to stay freaked out by this play for the rest of the trip and now that I'm at home.

I'm still afraid of this play. If I wake up in the middle of the night and I'm disoriented? I think of the Woman in Black. If I'm alone at night and it's late and I hear weird noises? I think of the Woman in Black. It still haunts me. Logically I can look at that and say, "Wow, what a great piece of theater, to still have me thinking about it about 4 years", but honestly, I kind of just want to forget about it.

Now the movie is coming out. I know that the play is different from the book, and I think the movie is going to be more like the book than the play but I'm still afraid to see it. The only thing that I can think that might make me feel better about it, is that the play within the play scenario and the twist at the end really bothered me the most. I hope the movie doesn't have those elements, because then I might be able to not be scared out of my mind for the next 4 years.

Here is the trailer for "The Woman in Black". What do you think? Are you going to see it?

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