Wednesday, October 8, 2008


I still have news from the Woodstock Film Festival that I need to post on this site, but here's a quick time out.

On Sunday, the Journal will publish a list of staff picks: the horror movie that scared me the most. The submissions, from all departments at the paper, have been really creepy. However, one takes the cake. It's from cops reporter Christine Pizzuti and it's posted below. And it's a doozy. I got creeped out just reading it.

But just so you know, the story Sunday will ask readers to submit THEIR pick for the horror movie that scared them the most. This is all in anticipation of Halloween, and the picks of readers will be published in the very near future.

Let's consider this a sneak-peek of Sunday's story. Thanks, Christine:

Christine Pizzuti
General assignment reporter

I’ve seen a lot of horror movies. My friends and I used to have a Christmas Eve tradition of watching Nightmare on Elm Street and the Halloween movies. But those never phase me. The one movie that has stayed with me, and affects the way I enter the house and pick up the phone at night, is When a Stranger Calls — the 1979 version with Carol Kane. The movie takes place in one night, when the baby sitter answers the phone to a stranger asking, “Have you checked the children?” The children are found dismembered in their beds.

I watched the movie in 7th grade at a friend’s house on All Hallow’s Eve. We were in the basement, sitting next to the sliding door, when my friend’s father, wearing a white mask, knocked on the door and disappeared into the night. We ran upstairs screaming, and found him sitting at the kitchen table, eating dinner. He told us there were reports of someone running around the neighborhood with a mask on, and for us to go back downstairs and finish the movie. He said he would let us know if he heard anything. Of course he showed up again at the slider, and we screamed and cried, and he was forced to give up his identity.

So, it’s not as much the movie that scared me, but the association with a practical joke. But I still fear sliders and the possibility of a stranger lurking around the property, waiting to tear off my limbs. Before entering my home at night, I check a lot of the windows from the outside first, and enter the bedroom talking on the cell phone with a kitchen knife in my hand.

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