Believe it or not some of the other scariest movies I saw were the Abbott and Costello series of movies where they meet several Universal Studios monsters. Funny thing, I knew these were comedies but they still scared the bejesus out of me.
This is what an impressionable 10 year old I was. I loved Abbot and Costello. I knew they were comedians. I knew this was a movie, but still.
I look at these movie clips now and a broad smile breaks out across my face. I see the humor now but man oh man, I didn't when I was that scared 10 year old in that darkened Roosevelt movie theater in Downingtown back in 1951.
Now here is one movie that didn't scare me a whit, "The Creature From the Black Lagoon." Are you kidding? Nice musical score but I did enjoy the movie if for nothing else that its camp effect. Doesn't this movie clip sort of remind you of a precursor to "Jaws?"
Ah yes, "Chrissie's Last Swim." Who can ever forget this scene?
Now that I'm dusting the cobwebs from my brain I remember another horror movie that scared the bejesus out of me, "The Thing."
What was good about "The Thing" was that you never really got a good look at the monster, who was played by the young James Arness, the future Matt Dillon of "Gunsmoke."
Which reminds me now of probably the second scariest movie that I ever saw, "The Haunting" by Shirley Jackson. This was the tried and true formula of a group of people spending a night in a haunted house. I remember when this movie was over I was exhausted and I remembered something else, I never actually saw a monster which in the end is the true horror, it is our fear of the unknown.