The week of April 12th, 1985, held three significant events for myself:
1.) April 12th was my ninth birthday.
2.) My parent's divorce became official on April 15th.
3.) The Lewis Teague directed, Stephen King anthology film Cat's Eye opened.
The first two require no explanation I imagine, so let me explain the importance of number three. It was the first "horror" film I was ever permitted to see theatrically, which probably was allowed due to the first two factors.
As I have described a few years ago on another blog, my first experience with a horror film came when I snuck out of my room late one night whilst my father watched Friday the 13th part III on Beta and caught a few minutes. Needless to say, I was instantly fascinated! As my father learned of my taste for horror, he started to tell me the plots of films whose video boxes tantalized me, but proved forbidden fruit because of my age (a discrimination that continues unabated to this day!), as ghost stories, these included Halloween and Psycho.
Flash forward to Spring 1985, my father or mother won tickets to a pre-release screening of Cat's Eye from a radio station contest [side note: this was a strangely prevalent occurrence in 1985, I got to see Back to the Future a few days before it opened wide, and my dad went to a pre-release screening of Porky's Revenge, which netted me a super cool extra large t-shirt with the film's logo on it, both via radio station call-in promotions], after an intense bargaining session where I promised my mother that my homework would be finished first, and I would have no nightmares, I was allowed to accompany my dad, thus becoming the first of many horror films I would see theatrically, a large portion with my dad.
To those who have seen it, obviously Cat's Eye is no great shakes in the annals of horror filmmaking. A triptych of short stories penned for the screen by King himself, two of the three stories would be more apropos of a Twilight Zone episode than say Tales From the Crypt. But the last vignette, featuring poor little Drew Barrymore being stalked by a nasty, wall dwelling, soul sucking goblin, actually was very effective to this nine year old child, and alas, I did have a nightmare that night (though I never told my parents) when I woke up and my poodle Sammy was breathing close to me, very similar to the tactics employed by Mr. Goblin.
To commemorate my twenty-five plus year appreciation of horror cinema, let's look at the trailer for Cat's Eye, which is heavy on King references (Cujo, Christine, The Shining and The Dead Zone all net a reference within the first thirty seconds) and lo and behold, who's that narrating, none other than our good pal, Percy Rodrigues.
If you can remember, I'd be interested in your first horror film theatrical experience, please share in the comments or if you have a blog, your own post.