Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Up All Night II - The Ending of Gremlins

Me? Scared of Gremlins? I know. It sounds awful silly. How could a movie that is so delightful keep me awake at night? Well, as with most things in life, there is a story behind it.

I used to live in a small town called Southlake, Texas. By small town standards, it's very different. But there is one aspect of the town that always scared me. A cemetery by the church I frequented as a kid. Now, the cemetery never bothered me very much. That was until that fateful day.

Living the lavish life I did as a child, I had the single greatest thing a child could ask for. We have a TV with a VCR in the car. The joy that thing provided on road trips will never be forgotten. Nor will the terror that it brought to my life.

Back in those days, we rented VHS tapes at a place that was called Blockbuster. Neither of those things really exist anymore, so this story becomes all the more chilling. One of my favorite films was Gremlins and it still is to this day. What happened next was sheer coincidence.

As Gizmo and Billy raced to stop Stripe at the end of the film, the family car started down the road that ultimately led to the cemetery. The unsuspecting child I was didn't know that his greatest fear was about to come into existence. As the chase grew to the resolution, so did the road grow to an end. Suddenly, we stopped at the light and this happened.

I looked at the TV. I looked at the cemetery. This was a back and forth that happened for what seemed like an eternity. My heart raced and I couldn't breath. I wanted to scream in terror, but I couldn't let out a word. It was at that moment that I realized what death was. Granted this wasn't my first experience of death in my life, but this one stuck and it stuck hard.

As a result, almost anytime that I watch Gremlins, a sleepless night is almost assured. How about you? Did the ending of Gremlins ever scare you as a kid? Sound off in the comments below!

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