by Doug Schultz
1. Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971): Boat Trip
Things get trippy fast as Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder, never better) takes his guests on a boat tour down a psychedelic tunnel. In a movie filled with weirdness [and countless examples of child endangerment], this scene takes the Everlasting Gobstopper. Mr. Wonka's dead-eyed, thousand-yard stare, the flashing lights, the imagery of insects, the cacophonous music, the CHICKEN GETTING ITS HEAD CUT OFF ... all served to freak kids out since the movie's original release. "Are the fires of hell a-glowing? Is the grisly reaper mowing?" They don't make 'em like they used to!
2. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988): The Dip
3. Return to Oz (1985): EVERYTHING
4. Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey (1991): Granny's Kiss
Look, this movie -- much like F This Movie! -- knows what it's doing. And the scene that's always messed with my head is when Bill (Alex Winter) is forced to kiss his disgusting grandmother (also played by Alex Winter) in purgatory. Know this: I will never force my daughter to kiss another relative, on earth OR in hell. Nightmare fuel.
5. Home Alone (1990): Evil Furnace
6. Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977): Dianoga
You know how you like to think you're the hero-type? Like you'd totally don the enemy's uniform and infiltrate a highly fortified base to rescue a princess? You'd LAUGH in the face of the "force," right? But then -- because you had a bad plan with no exit strategy -- you find yourself stuck in a trash compactor (of all places)? And if that's not enough, something "else" is down there with you? And then you're all, "I'm out!" Laser fights I can handle. Large cephalopods with seven suckered tentacles surrounding a fanged maw containing a sharp serrated probe? NOPE.
7. The Dark Crystal (1982), Time Bandits (1981) and Labyrinth (1986): General Vibe
Kind of a cheat to include three-movies-in-one, but WHATEVER (my list, my rules) -- this is my most personal entry. Sure, some people LOVE '80s fantasy films (*ahem* PATRICK *ahem*), and the dark, otherworldly realms they occupy. Others, like me, get total FREAKED whenever we stumble upon these dusty remnants whilst surfing the dial at 3 a.m. Like, I'm alone. ALONE-alone. All alone. No one's around, and I'm very much unsettled. Puppets will do that (be they Spitting Image or others). So will anything inaccessibly "British." I'll tell you this much: I'm done with meat loaf. "It's evil!" Just like Skeksis. And Fireys.
8. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981): Face Melting
9. Toy Story 3 (2010): Ya Burnt!
10. Pinocchio (1940): Pleasure Island
The "donkey scene" stands out in a packed field of early Disney films in which scary shit goes down (e.g., the pink elephants in Dumbo, baby oysters getting eaten by a walrus in Alice in Wonderland, ghosts haunting an enchanted forest in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the stepmother's glowing eyes in Cinderella, etc.). A child literally screams for his mom as he turns into a donkey. WHAT'S THAT ABOUT?! Pleasure Island has a dark secret -- it punishes you for your naughtiness (namely, smoking, drinking and pool). It turns mischievous children into LITERAL donkeys, sent to the salt mine as slave laborers (la-burros?). Pinocchio: providing children with a HORRIFYING moral compass for almost 75 years!
11. Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985): Large Marge Sent Ya!
"There was this sound, like a garbage truck dropped off the Empire State Building ..."