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Trauma Identified:: Popcornmonster on Up From the Depths

October 20th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 2 Comments

Hello Kindertrauma! It’s Popcornmonster.

I recently had a very Kindertrauma-esque moment I would like to share. A little background and then I’ll explain the solution to the mystery.

When I was five years old, so this would have been around Summer of 1979, I vaguely remember playing with a friend who lived a few houses away. We were in the basement of his house and a puddle had formed on the floor from the washing machine. We starting pretending it was a lake. Then my friend started telling me about some new movie where the people can’t go in the water because the water comes alive and eats the people. Some time later, we were walking past the TV and the trailer was playing for the film. My friend pointed it out to me and said that was the movie he was talking about.

Fast-forward thirty-five years. Long time horror fan and filmmaker myself now. But I’ve never known what that scary movie was. I knew it wasn’t Jaws or Piranha. The time period doesn’t match up and I knew what Jaws was. So a few nights back I was watching Machete Maidens on Netflix. It’s a documentary about how cheap it was to make exploitation films in the Philippines during the late 60s through the early 80s. When suddenly they played a trailer for a film. I immediately recognized that trailer from that dusty old memory and now I had a title to go with it. A title that IMDb verified with the June 1979 release date. The film was “Up From the Depths“, which now I realize was a title that sat under my nose all these years. The poster artwork was a familiar site in the old video stores but I never bothered to see the film. Until last night.

It’s one of the dopier Jaws clones of the late 70s. They even managed to copy the mayor from Jaws with an arrogant idiot resort owner that refuses to heed the danger. The goofy kill scenes all look like the actors flopping around in a pool while someone bubbled red dye around them.

Ultimately it’s a dumb movie but now it holds a place in my memory for being “that movie”.

→ 2 CommentsTags: Name That Trauma! · Traumafessions

Sunday Viewing:: Galactica 1980’s The Night the Cylons Landed

October 19th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 1 Comment

I think we can all agree that if Cylons landed on Earth on Halloween night it would be particularly devastating, as folks would naturally assume that they were costumed revelers rather than robots committed to the final annihilation of the life form known as man. If this concept chills you to the bone fear not, the entertaining yet borderline atrocious two part episode of GALACTICA 1980 entitled “The Night the Cylons Landed” is here to assure you that there’s nothing a clown, a microwave oven, a few verses of “The Goodship Lollipop” and Wolfman Jack can’t fix. As the Cylons take Manhattan, keep your eyes peeled for PETER MARK RICHMAN as crabby Colonel Briggs who’d go on to portray crabby chaperone Charles McCulloch in FRIDAY THE 13th PART 8.

→ 1 CommentTags: Stream Warriors · Streaming Alert! · Sunday Streaming · YouTube Alert!

Name That Trauma:: Ben from Australia on a Wooden Church Infested with Rats

October 18th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 1 Comment

Hello Kindertrauma, I really hope you guys can help me with this little nightmare inducer.

When I attended primary school the library also functioned as the media centre (which in those days meant a big TV and a VCR player). Depending on her workload the librarian would sometimes plunk us down in front of the TV with a tape. One time we watched an animated flick that still haunts me, although I don’t remember a great deal of it. It was the first time I can remember literally being frozen from fear. The scene that has stayed with me is a slow pan down a dark hallway in what I think was a wooden church with a thoroughly awful portrait on the wall and red eyed rats lurking around.

Here are all the other details I can remember or deduce:

The animation style was hardly animation at all, but rather slow pans over dark and heavy hand drawn images of a style you might almost find in a children’s book. I’m not certain, but I think I remember narration, not unlike the audiobook recordings with still images that you get now on YouTube.

1995 is the latest year this could possibly have come out, but it was probably made earlier than that, likely in the 80’s.

I live in Australia so whatever this was had been released here and was possibly made here.

Finally, this would have been a short film, probably less than an hour long, likely not more than half an hour or so.

For the longest time I thought it was animated adaption of H.P Lovecraft‘s ‘The Rats In The Walls‘ but I’ve never been able to find anything that matches up with what I remember. If you know of anything that sounds like this (or of an obscure adaptation of TRITW) please let me know. This has been haunting me for the best part of two decades.



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Mickster’s TV Halloween Funhouse

October 17th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 14 Comments

UNK SEZ:You know a holiday is approaching because here comes our old pal Mickster to kindly host another funhouse! Yay! This time out Mickster has selected images from Halloween themed TV episodes and specials. How many do you kinder-critters recognize?

→ 14 CommentsTags: Kinder Loves Mickster! · Kindertrauma Funhouse

Name That Trauma:: Suzie on a Cross-Dressing Killer

October 14th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 6 Comments

Hello kindertrauma!

Your website is amazing. I can nose around for hours. I’ve got one for you that’s been really bugging me. I saw this on TV in the early to mid ’80s, so I think it was an episode of a TV show or a TV movie (we didn’t have any movie channels). I really just remember the end … it was a male serial killer who dressed as a woman and lured a man back to a room (might have been posing as a prostitute, I can’t remember, and I think it was a hotel room or the man’s apartment). The killer/woman was blonde (aren’t they always??). (S)he brings the man (I think he was a business man) back to the room, then excuses herself to the bathroom, where she proceeds to peel off her disguise. This was the part I remember as really creepy! Off comes the wig, the dress, the make-up…. and there stands a man in a dark shirt and pants, with dark hair and small black eyes (a little reminiscent of Anthony Perkins actually). He then pulls out a long knife, that I remember as almost like an ice pick. The killer finally emerges from the bathroom, and somehow manages to sneak up on the victim and stabs him repeatedly with the knife. The details here are hazy …. but a cop (or team of cops) is chasing the killer, and tracks him down … and I think soon after this encounter in the room the killer is cornered in an alley by the cops and is killed. He may have gotten back in disguise at that point.

I just have no idea what this episode or movie is! No familiar actors, and I can’t picture the cop or detective who was tracking the killer. I’m pretty sure I’d recognize the actor who plays the killer, but from various googling I can’t find it. Any idea?



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Name That Trauma :: Reader Maddie on a Table Top Torture

October 13th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 7 Comments

Hey Kindertrauma,

My name is Maddie, I’ve just turned 18 and I recently discovered your website. I read something online that got me thinking about traumatic experiences from our childhoods that we either can’t remember or block out. I’m especially interested in disturbing media/cinema moments from childhood, so I’ve really enjoyed your website, but I also have a few of my own that I was hoping you could help me with.

I was watching a movie with my family as a kid, and one of the very first scenes (it seems like it was within the first ten minutes of the movie) was one of I guess, torture. There was a man on a table in a fire-lit room, with someone either beating or stabbing him, and his whole body like jerking and convulsing at the same time. I only have a vague memory because it’s been like 15 years since I saw the scene, but I clearly remember being disturbed by the visual effects and especially the convulsions that the man on the table (I feel like he was either not wearing a shirt or naked as well) was having.

Anyways, up until today, I had a vague memory of the movie being “Legend” but I found the movie online today and the scene I was so horrified by as a kid was nowhere to be found, and I ended up just watching 90 minutes of Tom Cruise make a horrified face through his long, dirty hair.

I would love your help in finding out what movie it was from, or if it was some sort of alternate scene from “Legend,” and if it was possible to find a clip of just that scene, I would be so grateful. I can’t give any more details about the movie, or confirm that it was “Legend” since I had to leave the room immediately and never saw it again, although I did see online that there is a torture scene in some versions of the movie, but I can’t seem to find it.

Thank you so much!

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YouTube Alert :: Square Pegs’ Halloween XII

October 12th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · No Comments

Way back in 1982, right smack in the heart of the slasher craze, the TV show SQUARE PEGS did a Halloween episode inspired by the then current furor entitled HALLOWEEN XII. It would behoove you to watch this classic episode below and then go ahead and order the entire series HERE.

square pegs muffy tepperman halloween

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Name That Trauma: Katy H. on a Skin Rotting Mummy & a Kid Killing Vamp

October 11th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 2 Comments


Love your website and I have two different movies that I saw as a kid that I am trying to figure out.

1. Saw this movie with my dad but cannot remember the name and was so traumatized that I didn’t watch the whole movie. What I remember is that it is about a mummy, it must be late 70’s, early 80’s. The scene I recall is that there was a mummy that was uncovered by archeologists and it was taken to a research center or university or something and there was a young student that touched the corpse causing the skin on his fingers to rot like leprosy. I can’t find the actual title to the movie to find out what happened to the student!

2. I think I saw this on television, one of those Saturday afternoon horror films. This was probably made around the time of Captain Kronos Vampire Hunter and was in the same style but was not that movie. It looked like the Vampire Barnabas show with the 60’s hair and the Technicolor sound stages. The scene I remember is two young boys who follow a female vampire into a forest to a tree ??? or cave and she kills them and the next scene I think they are in coffins with bite marks. It was very creepy but I can’t recall a title or anything else about the movie.

Hope you can help, thanks!

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Ten Hulu Horrors for Halloween

October 10th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · 2 Comments

If you have a computer you can watch horror movies any damn time you please and for free! Well, actually you will pay in patience as you endure some dumb commercials periodically but you should know by now how to tune such things out and hide inside your happy place until they are over. Some of these are obvious and some of these have nothing to do with the holiday and some of these might not look their best but they’re all mostly good and they all have the power to get you in the Halloween spirit if you let them.


This one would be easy to pass by on Hulu as it is presented by the eternally lovely ELVIRA, who might admit to you herself, doesn’t always present the finest of films. Anyway, ELVIRA’s not here, I am (I can hear those disappointed groans telepathically) and I’m here to say this movie is tippity tops. In this rare Spanish film shot in English, LILLI PALMER stars as a head mistress at a boarding school that is not a fan of her cherished son messing with the female students. Naturally folks start getting killed but you’ll never guess the twists including one that still shocks me to this very day. Director Narciso Ibanez Serrador truly delivers on the atmosphere and even though it’s going to take me a while to memorize his name, I simply have to because he also directed the kindertrauma classic WHO CAN KILL A CHILD? (Not to mention the opening segment of 6 FILMS TO KEEP YOU AWAKE- which I’m itching to watch again soon). Many a year ago, I had the hardest time finding this movie and had to send out for a very crappy bootleg so please honor my previous struggle by watching it for free!


I’m not sure if this is LUCIO FULCI’s greatest movie but I’m leaning toward it being my favorite of his. It’s got all the surreal bizarreness and grubby goriness of his best flicks but in addition to that, it’s soooo much fun and leaves you feeling fresh as a daisy rather than vaguely off kilter and therefore offers itself to more casual viewing. Let’s just say that if THE SHINING made the horrible mistake of having a baby with CATHY’S CURSE, the resulting offspring wailing for instant institutionalization would be something like this. That’s not a dig. THBTC is wildly silly, awkwardly dubbed and mad as a million hatters for sure and yet, it’s so damn beautiful in its cool gothic greyness. There’s nothing quite like it, except maybe GHOSTHOUSE (1988) which was filmed in the same creepy abode. Too bad that’s not on Hulu, what a great double feature that would make.


Do me a favor and jump back in time to this review HERE. It will tell you all you need to know about my undying appreciation of this superior slasher.


Did you just get back from reading my ancient HOUSE ON SORRORITY ROW review? Don’t take off your hat just yet. I don’t mean to be a taskmaster but do you think you could click HERE and save me the trouble of reiterating why SPELLBINDER had to take out a restraining order against me? You’re a peach.


I know this Halloween set classic is a no-brainer and I don’t mean to insult you by including it here but just in case there may be anyone out there who has yet to accept Angela’s invite, I just have to say do so now and plan to do so forever. It seems impossible that a movie can be as hilarious as this is and still provide plenty of creeps but no matter how many times I return, I can count on being a little freaked out. I’m not even talking about the famous lipstick in boob bit- I’m referring to the overall claustrophobic, rats-in-a maze mood it conjures up so well. People tend to dismiss movies that are this much fun as frivolous guilty pleasures but I don’t think a few chuckles erase the fact that there’s something legitimately scary going on here too. The build up to the supernatural shenanigans is so expertly done that the pay off is pure gold and I say if your Halloween doesn’t include a little BAUHAUS, well you’re doing it wrong.


This seems like another too obvious choice except please note I’m specifically talking about the remake (GEORGE ROMERO’s classic is available on Hulu too though, if you are so inclined). I caught this one in the cinema back in the day and I was thoroughly impressed and was then taken aback to learn it had received mostly negative reviews. Looking back I should not have been surprised as it was bound to catch flack for being a remake alone. That’s so sad because a color redo was inevitable and TOM SAVINI‘s modernized telling does a great job of respecting its predecessor while still bringing something fresh to the table. Our old pal Barbara, who was rightfully suffering severe shock in the original and largely dazed, is suddenly wide-awake and ready to throw down. Actress PATRICIA TALLMAN portrays Barbara in a way that she’s not magically infallible to serve the story but authentically grounded and convincingly capable. Personally, I’ll never forget the opening confrontation that includes the premiere dead dude getting stabbed by one of those wire flower corsages meant for a grave and then continuing to stalk with it dangling off of him. I thought that was one clever way to announce that the film would be adding some new flourishes all its own. If you are a purist who has been avoiding watching this baby due to your loyalty to the original…stop.

COLD PREY (2006)

Dear COLD PREY, if anyone ever tries to tell you that you are not perfect please cram a pick axe in their face for me. Every year my love for you grows stronger and stronger and I just want thank you for being you (while still hitting every beloved slasher trope I crave). You are everything I ever wanted. You have a fiercely charismatic lead with believable bonds to those around her, a horrifically menacing maniac who somehow inspires slivers of sympathy, true nail-gnawing suspense and perhaps most importantly, folks getting drunk in an abandoned ski lodge (which is my idea of heaven on Earth). You seem to really care about me too because you spawned an equal sequel and a third prequel that I did not think was anywhere near as bad as some pretended it was. There is no reason why I should have to wait until winter to visit you, no reason at all. Never change. Eskimo kisses.


Once upon a time I thought THE CHILDREN was a terrible movie simply because it was not as good as the one I imagined in my head after being bombarded by its TV spots as a wee lad. Now I realize that it’s still pretty terrible but wonderfully so. One would think that having a bus load of kids drive through a nuclear cloud to become zombie-like killers would be enough but somebody involved also had the brilliant idea of having the kids’ nails turn black and the tykes kill by way of radioactive hugs (while being immune to shotgun blasts and stoppable only after their hands are lopped off). That’s just so crazy that it just might work! Or maybe not- but the fun is in the fact that they carried on anyway. Another bonus is learning that Harry Manfredini is nearly as lazy as myself and recycled much of his score from the same year’s FRIDAY THE 13TH. Bonkers though it may be, there are some surprisingly striking images that appear now and then and sense be damned, an eerie vibe impervious to reason.

INFERNO (1980)

ARGENTO does a lot of crappy stuff (mostly lately) and he does a lot of interesting stuff (mostly everything) and he even does some stone cold, indisputable genius stuff (mostly between 1975 and 1985). INFERNO falls into that last category. In fact INFERNO was the first movie of his I ever saw followed by CREEPERS (aka Phenomena) and then SUSPIRIA if you can imagine such a thing. Anyway INFERNO haunted me for so long after I saw it. I could not stop thinking of the underwater scene in which Rose (Irene Miracle) plunges into a hole in the floor to collect some fallen keys. It’s so mesmerizing and I seriously think ARGENTO might be a witch himself and this is a perfect spell. The whole movie is exquisite with perhaps the momentary exception of a late in the flick skeleton of death costume that doesn’t quit work. Just talking about INFERNO makes me feel like I’m walking backward into a semi-dream state. My suggestion is to never question what this movie is telling you, just nod and follow it wherever it leads you.

THE HOLE (2009)

Aw, good ol’ JOE DANTE sure knows how to make a movie. This PG-13 flick is about three young folks who face their fears and it’s got just the right balance of fun and frights to make it perfect for Halloween viewing. Read my full review over HERE so that I can be finished this list and get to carving a pumpkin or something.

Extra 10 Bonus: On Hulu you’ll also find such fine nuggets as: THE EVIL DEAD (1981), THE PROWLER (1981), INTRUDER (1989), C.H.U.D. (1984) FROM BEYOND (1986), FRANKENHOOKER (1990), BASKETCASE 2 (1990), LET SLEEPING CORPSES LIE (1974), HORROR EXPRESS (1972) GINGER SNAPS (2001) and so much more- go explore!

→ 2 CommentsTags: General Horror

Name That Trauma:: KI Simpson on an Animated Short Based on Eugene Field’s The Duel

October 9th, 2014 by unkle lancifer · No Comments

Hello, I have a memory of a short that scared me as a kid that I have yet to find hard evidence of online. It aired on Nick Jr. in the early or mid-’90s, and it was an animated retelling of the poem The Duel. It was just the poem said to some simple animation, but the quiet voice and tense atmosphere made it very frightening. I originally thought it must have been on Grimm’s Fairy Tale Classics (there’s a TV Tropes entry stating it was, that was actually written by me), but researching the show further it did not seem to have short segments in the episodes. If anyone could identify this I would really appreciate it, thank you for your help. – KI Simpson

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