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Scarier than Advertised

Omar Jeter

As a society, we love to be scared until we are scared, and then we deeply regret watching what it was that scared us in the first place. This was most definitely the case with the following mentioned past cartoons and shows that were aimed at kids but still gives us the heebie-jeebies as adults to this day.

10. The Black Cauldron: Disney has never been known to just do okay. Everything they produce is either a major hit or a major miss. The Black Cauldron, to this day, is one of those movies they just don’t speak of and try to sweep under the rug as often as they can. Coming out in 1985 this children’s cartoon with a medieval backdrop presented plenty of scares from the beginning as a young would-be wizard ventured on a quest to defeat the evil horned King, to this day is considered to have some of the scariest almost too scary themes of any Disney movie. It was denied re-releases for many years.

9. Sectaurs the Warriors of Symbion: a failed genetic experiment that wiped out an entire planet and transformed it into a world of giant mutated bugs and a hybrid race of human/insect people, a toy line that involved action figures riding on giant size hand puppet controlled spiders, scorpions, and dragonflies. This was just a concoction of questionable ideas and gimmicks that led to the five-episode mini-series that was very seldom replayed due to its very scary themes. The tales of Prince Dargon and his heroic Knights battling Spydrex and his evil strikeforce will go down in infamy as one of the weirdest and strangest cartoons and toy lines ever made.

8. Coraline: British author Neil Gaiman’s 2002 masterpiece and the winner of multiple awards, including the 2003 nebula award and the 2002 Bram Stoker award is a very cringe-worthy masterpiece about the consequences of curiosity as young Coraline opens the Forbidden door in a new house with chaos soon to follow. Although aimed at children it is officially listed as a Dark Fantasy Thriller in most online listings

7. The Secret of NIMH: beautiful animation, mainstream advertising, and a star-studded voice acting cast including Peter Strauss, Shannen Doherty, and Wil Wheaton could not stop this animated Thriller from being named one of the scariest animated movies of all time. The dark tones, the frightening characters, and the overall sense of dread from start to finish made this masterpiece by Don Bluth forever engraved in movie history and will forever have a huge cult following

6: Return to Oz: once again Disney steps up to the plate with this live-action sequel to The Wizard of Oz in 1985 directed and written by Walter Murch that was said to be so scary that young actor Fairuza Balk who Played Dorothy Gale was rumored to undergo a medical examination to ensure there were no harmful or lasting effects from participating in this movie project. With some of the darkest settings and characters ever seen in a Disney movie up to this point, the Further Adventures of Dorothy in The Land of Oz was heart-wrenching and traumatic to say the least on a budget of 28 million dollars but only grossing 11.1 million this was another one of those dust bunnies that Disney tried to sweep under the rug.

5. Inhumanoids: with the catchphrase of “the evil that lies within”, there are some that question if this animated miniseries was even meant for kids in the first place, part of the Super Sunday cartoon lineup alongside Bigfoot, Jem, and Robotix, it told the story of Herc Armstrong and his band of scientists called the EarthCore who are trying to find out why sporadic and unprecedented weather and environmental catastrophes are taking place around the world, upon further investigation they uncover that multiple monsters including Metlar, Tendril and D’Cmpose are responsible and must be stopped.

4. Monster House: this surprising 2006 hit that is deemed a 3D computer-animated horror film from director Gil Kenan with such voice acting talents as Maggie Gyllenhaal, Steve Buscemi, Kevin James, and Nick Cannon made this a box office smash! The Misadventures and shenanigans of 12-year-old DJ Walters, chowder, and Zee the babysitter into one of the creepiest houses ever seen on film provided the perfect mix of comedy, horror, and action. And well-designed on a budget of 70 million dollars engrossed in 142 million.

3. Spirited Away: this 2001 masterpiece of animation and storytelling is celebrated and revered worldwide to this day as one of the most iconic films and biggest tributes to Japanese animation, it is also considered to be a fever dream on steroids. The overall story and tone, character development, and the music made this a work of art, but the character designs are what made people stay at the edge of their seats. Exceedingly scary and frightening but overall a pure delight. It will be a very long time before we see something quite as Majestic and influential as this diamond of the film industry.

2. Goosebumps: RL Stine will always be to kids what Stephen King is to adults. The Mad maestro of young adult horror books has gone on to create a dynasty with the fox kids Mega hit TV show that was so popular because it was so scary that even branched off into other TV shows, including the witching hour. The brilliant mind behind so many masterpieces including Fear Street and The Nightmare Room is an influence for future producers and directors of young adult horror and suspense. It will be a very, very long time before any TV show has quite the impact and perfect recipe, such as Goosebumps.

  1. The Dark Crystal: there are many many contenders, but there will always be one true king for the foreseeable future as to the scariest kids Family movie ever made. It is still debatable by parents as to which age is appropriate even to let their children watch this for the first time. On a surprising budget of 25 million dollars and an unfortunate box office gross of 41 million dollars, the love child of Jim Henson and Frank Oz is still considered to be one of the most beautiful Testaments too practical special effects, beautiful breathtaking character design and backdrops, and Superior storytelling. Make no mistake, this is The Stuff nightmares are made of, and there is a 50-50 chance you will not sleep well after seeing this, but it is also not to be missed or overlooked, and even though first released in December of 1982 it is still revered as one of the best films of all time. Netflix recently did a very successful follow up a little over two months ago. The Dark Crystal will always be a true epic in the film industry.
    So there you have it, 10 suggestions of awesome amazing movies and shows to watch leading up to ol’ Hallows Eve. Are you brave enough to watch all 10?

oajeter45@gmail.com

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