Home Entertainment The Critical Days of Horror Countdown – E.T: The Extra Terrestrial

The Critical Days of Horror Countdown – E.T: The Extra Terrestrial

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Welcome to Critical Hit’s 31 days of horror! It’s the month of spookiness, of frights and jump scares and we’re ready to celebrate! Over the decades, movies have managed to create eerie atmospheres, scenes of terror that can’t be contained within a single genre and we’re looking back at the films and the movie maniac moments that had us squirming in our seats.

THE MOVIE: E.T. THE EXTRATERRESTRIAL

E.T. needs no introduction. This Steven Spielberg classic not only made mega-bucks at the box office and became the highest grossing movie of all time when it released, but practically defined how kids movies should be made. It was also a story that broke the mould on how aliens were viewed and instead of giving us creatures that want to probe us and take over the world, it give us an alien with a strong connection to the children that cared for him and came to view him as one of their friends.

Reading all of this you might think I must really have a low scare limit, but the truth is that I actually enjoy the horror genre and can sit through most horror movies today without flinching. So, why has such a relatively unscary kids movie made the list? Well, consider that I was a little 5-year old when my parents first rented is on Betamax many years ago and up to that point, I had never really thought much about aliens. In fact, the end of the road was a little bit of a stretch for my imagination as all of a sudden hearing these noises and seeing glimpses of these strange creatures on the screen was a little too much for me and I ended up running to my bedroom, only to watch the rest of the movie another time when I was a little older.

THE SCENE:

Early in the movie the alien ships arrive on earth and we see our alien friends scurrying off to explore this newfound planet, only for them to get alerted to danger and needing to flee, accidentally leaving behind one of their own who now has to hide from the humans.

WHY IT’S SCARY:

What makes this scene work so well is that you don’t actually see all that much of our alien friends. Spielberg makes use of a night setting and the rich foliage to hide the characters from us and leaves us guessing as to how they might look like. Needless to say though, those small long fingers are pretty frightening.  That we actually get to see very little is what makes this scene so intense. All we’re left with are those strange noises and our imagination.

It’s one of those perfect examples where sometimes holding back and keeping the mystery high often creates more tension than revealing your ‘monster’ early on. The epic score by John Williams only adds to the intensity as his use of lower string chords leaves you feeling uneasy.

Last Updated: October 4, 2018

17 Comments

  1. Original Heretic

    October 4, 2018 at 15:14

    Movies that scared the crappity crap out of me when I was a wee lad:
    Howard the Duck
    Superman III

    Don’t you worry, Craig, even the best of us have been scared by the non-scary when we were little.

    Reply

    • Pariah

      October 4, 2018 at 15:25

      My mom’s belt scared me more than any movie could. Didn’t stop me from doing stuff that incurred the meeting of belt and ass though.

      Reply

      • Original Heretic

        October 4, 2018 at 15:28

        Totally had my fair share of that as well.
        When I was REALLY bad, I got the belt from my dad. WAAAY scarier.

        But that one scene at the end of Superman 3? Damn son… I was like, what, 5 or 6 years old? When this crap started, I remember running away from the TV. I was so scared that night, my mom actually convinced my brother to allow me to crawl into bed with him for the night.

        Reply

        • Pariah

          October 4, 2018 at 15:32

          I’d have laughed at that myself, honestly. The only movie that actually scared me as a child was Necronomicon:Book of Dead. Should not have been watching that at 8, but what the hell, age restrictions are just guidelines, right? XD

          Reply

          • Original Heretic

            October 4, 2018 at 15:41

            See now I totally avoided horrors as a kid. Scared me too much and with my very active imagination, I got terrible dreams. Terrible! Some of the dreams I had back then, they still stick in the back of my mind somewhere.
            All the way through high school, same thing. Didn’t do horrors. It was literally only once I left school that I started giving them a real chance.

            And it wasn’t my parents that kept me away from them either. They pretty much let me watch whatever.

          • Pariah

            October 4, 2018 at 15:49

            Lol, horrors usually didn’t scare me, still don’t. Not a genre I find enjoyable or engaging in any way, but it’s hella fun watching your friends jump a few meters in the air every time a random crow makes a noise.

          • Original Heretic

            October 4, 2018 at 15:53

            Not all horrors scare me.
            To give recent examples, IT and Quiet Place? Not scary to me. Cool movies, but I don’t get scared by them.

            The only ones that scare me are the really well done ghost stories or stuff about demonic presences/possessions.
            And that’s only because of personal experiences I’ve had, for the most part of my life. I still get them every now and again.
            So, when I see that stuff in a movie, it touches a nerve.
            As much as my wife loves horror movies, when I start speaking about the stuff I’ve seen and experienced, she walks away. She can’t listen. Especially when I start speaking about the recent stuff, when she was actually around.

          • Dresden

            October 4, 2018 at 15:54

            Also hated horrors as a kid, not that I specifically enjoy it today.
            Had an overactive imagination, accompanied by extremely vivid nightmares that tormented me as a kid.

            So yeah, I didn’t avoid horrors… but I didn’t particularly seek them out.

          • Original Heretic

            October 4, 2018 at 15:58

            At one point, I DID seek them out.
            Partly to desensitize myself.

          • Dresden

            October 4, 2018 at 15:59

            I sought out the gory stuff, mostly because I could stomach it and stayed faaaaar away from spirit stuff!

          • Original Heretic

            October 4, 2018 at 16:02

            Monstrous creatures and all that, those never got to me. Bit of gore here or there, no issues.
            But yeah, ghostly stories, cannot handle those.

    • Dresden

      October 4, 2018 at 15:36

      For me… Tales From The Crypt Keeper… *shudders*

      Reply

      • Original Heretic

        October 4, 2018 at 15:42

        Only saw those once I was all grown up and laughed my ass off at them!

        But for a young little mind, yup, I’m sure they would be super freaky.

        Reply

  2. Kromas

    October 4, 2018 at 15:15

    Wait horror what? this movie is not even as scary as Barney the dinosaur once you realize like 8 out of the 11 actors in that costume is in jail for pedophilia.

    Reply

  3. Neji

    October 4, 2018 at 15:17

    You spelt testicle wrong

    Reply

  4. Alien Emperor Trevor

    October 4, 2018 at 15:35

    More like Eek.T. #amirite!

    Reply

    • Magoo

      October 5, 2018 at 07:59

      I give it a YouTried/10

      Reply

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