Hearing that Wes Craven had passed probably didn’t hit most people like Robin Williams or Philip Seymour Hoffman, but if you think good and hard about it, you’ll begin to miss him. For me, he was a name attached to sleepless nights and sick jokes played on me by my brothers down dark hallways at night.
Scream came out when I was eight years old and consequently ruined my life. I sure as hell saw that movie on VHS at a friend’s house after renting it from Blockbuster. I know this because his parents were oblivious parents and let us rent rated R movies, unaware of the psychological trauma that would perpetrate our malleable minds. We hid in our sleeping bags every time Ghostface called Sidney on the phone. I remember we would yell “JUST DON’T ANSWER IT! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” into our pillows. The idea of a black- robed, white-masked killer coming up behind the couch, sticking a Bowie knife into our backs and ending short, pure innocent lives was completely real. We didn’t sleep. Even when Sidney dropped the TV on Stu’s face and sent Billy’s brain to high heaven, we did not sleep. (Sorry, spoiler alert for 19 years ago. You deserve this if you didn’t know.)
The Halloween post-Scream was also significantly horrifying, because Ghostface was everywhere. Add this with Freddie Nightmare on Elm Street, and you have a duo that would haunt my dreams well into my teens. Maybe even now. Think about Freddie Krueger. Burn faced freak with knives as fingers that gets into your dreams and kills you.
Thanks for the great times, Wes.
Rolling Stone wrote a nice summation of the man. Read it here.