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Name That Trauma: Anna L. on an Evil Inescapable Psychiatric Hospital

February 26th, 2015 · 2 Comments


My name is Anna L. and I’m wondering if you could help me identify a movie that has burned itself into my brain ever since I watched it as a child in the ‘90s (from what I remember, the movie looked like it was made in the ’90s or possibly the ’80s as well). It was about a troubled teenage girl (possibly with red or brown hair) who was put into a psychiatric hospital (by her parents I think?) after she was caught drunk driving or doing drugs or something along these lines.

However, as I remember it (which might be a bit off, since I was pretty young when I watched it and might have misunderstood something), the doctors in the hospital were all evil. They tried to experiment on the patients there or tried to get them to commit suicide maybe?

Anyway, the girl met a boy in the hospital (he had dark, curly hair I think) and fell in love with him. But I think that boy committed suicide as well in the end because he couldn’t take the horror anymore. The girl probably survived and managed to escape, I guess. Does this ring a bell for anyone? I’ve been trying to figure out what that movie was for years, but with no luck.

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Name That Trauma:: Dan Kelly on a Skiing Feline in a Doggy Dream

February 25th, 2015 · 3 Comments


This will probably be a tough one.

HERE is a full write-up I did for my blog. It’s driving me NUTS (and it probably didn’t do me any good as a kid either).

Love the site. You are doing God’s work. Which god though I am afraid to speculate upon.

Take care,

Dan Kelly

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Name That Trauma :: Carolyn J. on an All-White Possibly Furry Humanoid Creature

February 22nd, 2015 · 3 Comments

HI, I’m Carolyn, and this is a foggy childhood memory segment I would LOVE for someone to clear up.

There is an all-white, possible furry, humanoid creature running from a tree line across a snowy plain towards a one-room cabin containing a screaming woman. Cut back and forth between the creatures approach and the screaming chick inside. I can’t remember what happens after that. It had a grainy quality, like it was a late ’70s or early ’80s film.

Can you help me place it?

UNK SEZ: Dear Carolyn, your all-white, possibly furry humanoid creature makes me think of the mostly white, very furry humanoid creature in SHRIEK OF THE MUTILATED (1974)! That crazy creature does indeed hang around a tree line tormenting a screaming lady and the poor soul perpetually exists in a grainy seventies dimension too. I hope I’m right because I love that movie. In fact, since it’s on YouTube, I say we should all watch SHRIEK OF THE MUTILATED today (Carolyn, pay special attention to the 1:10 minute mark!)and why not read my old review for it way back HERE?.

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Name That Trauma:: Greg of The Troutchives on an Alien Trauma Slug

February 21st, 2015 · 2 Comments

Hey there Kindertrauma,

Long time listener, first time caller.

I remember from my youth, probably when I was 8 or 9, which would make it 1978 or 9 a rerun of a ’50s or ’60s anthology series. I don’t remember which one, I don’t think it was the Outer Limits but I DO remember my mother warning me not to watch lest I be scared, but of course I did anyway.

I recall it being black and white, about a group of disparate passengers on some sort of spacecraft in the near future and an alien sort of life form represented as a what looked like a slug made of light beamed upon people as it brought back traumatic feelings from their past.

Sound familiar anyone?


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Name That Trauma:: Joey S. on Nefarious Misshapen Tank Dwelling Elders

February 19th, 2015 · 3 Comments

Big fan! I would love some relief from this ear worm (ear thought?) that I’ve had for years now. I don’t remember whether it was on TV or a movie I saw back in the late ’80s/early ’90s. My most vivid memory is a sort of council of elders or ruling class that were running some sort of post-apocalyptic Earth where people were either underground or underwater. The elders were all in tanks and there were between 5 and 7 of them, horribly misshapen and hooked up to all sorts of plugs and tubes that kept them alive. I think they were planning on exterminating the people they ruled until a woman (?) caught wind of the nefarious plot and murdered them by destroying their tanks. One of the elders or council members was a woman (who always reminded me of Alice Krige or Frances McDormand) and was sort of the head elder who was primarily responsible for said nefarious plot. I appreciate any help!



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Name That Trauma:: Eric D. on a Late Night Killer Caller

February 10th, 2015 · 2 Comments

I remember seeing a movie a few years ago from either the ’70s or ’80s about a killer who calls and stalks this woman who is working at night at a call center or radio show or answering service or something in this big building. She starts getting calls from some guy which start to freak her out and she wants to leave but she is either unable to or she calls her boss but gets talked into staying. I remember it being very good but I completely forget the name. I don’t have much else to go on. Any help on this would be much appreciated.

Thanks a lot.

-Eric D.

UNK SEZ: Thanks Eric! Your NTT description sounds an awful lot like “All Night Messenger” the last segment of the 1989 horror anthology AFTER MIDNIGHT starring MARG HELGENBERGER. Check out the clip below and see if it clicks or read our full review HERE. On the other hand, I keep feeling like I’ve seen a very similar storyline in another movie that I can’t remember so I may be wrong. If anyone has another idea, please let us know!

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Name That Trauma:: Gary O. on a Melting Face and a Time Trip Witch

February 3rd, 2015 · 1 Comment

I hope you can help me find a traumatizing movie from when I was a kid. I think it was a ’60s movie. All I remember is that it was set in the early 1800s, had something to do with a witch and at the end a soldier dies and his face melts. I kind of sorta remember something about a time trip between the 1800s and current day, but I may be mixing that up with another movie. Hope you can help.


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Name That Trauma:: Stephen P. on a Skeletal Prostitute PSA

January 26th, 2015 · No Comments

Hi, longtime listener, first time caller. Love, love, LOVE this site! But to save time, I’m gonna cut to the chase (sort of).

I was rarely bothered by scary movies as a lad, but some commercials and PSA’s haunt me to this day. I remember when the National Enquirer used to run TV ads with their tagline, “Enquiring minds wanna know!” One of those had a photo of Marilyn Monroe that the special effects folks animated, so she said, “Murder.” Still gives me the creeps.

Anyway, I’m writing about a PSA from the 80’s. I lived in Florida, so I don’t know if it was a local or nationwide ad, but I remember it clearly…

A man picks up a lady in his car. I do not know for sure, but I believe she was supposed to be a prostitute. In any case, after some banter, she gets in the car and, as it pulls away, we see that the lady/possible prostitute is now a rotting, skeletal corpse that shouts one word: “AIDS!”

Well, I don’t know if that helped discourage prostitution or encourage abstinence or safe sex practices at all, but I DO know it gave me nightmares. I didn’t really understand what AIDS was, exactly, but I doubt ads like this generated much sympathy for the unfortunate victims of that condition. I actively avoided that commercial from then on. And prostitutes.

I have looked online for this PSA, because I think seeing it now, as a middle aged man, would lessen its impact and render it harmless.

Can anyone else find this trauma?

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Name That Trauma:: Joe G. on a NYC Train Safety PSA

January 21st, 2015 · No Comments

Hello Kindertrauma!

Long time, first time. Since you and your readers have such success in tracking down traumas, I was hoping that you could help me with mine. It must have been a PSA from the mid-seventies, and was probably exclusive to the New York City area, given the content. A grave-sounding narrator described the action as it happened – a man with a rocking 70’s-‘stache is reading a newspaper on a subway platform. He drops it to the tracks, and leaps down to retrieve it. You know were this is going – the train comes, and the PSA ends with the sound of a train breaking, and a series of still images of the guy holding his hand in front of his face, eyes wide, the train’s headlights brighter and brighter on him, each still closer and closer to his face.

My father took the train to work and read the paper every day. This so traumatized me that I remember standing in our kitchen pleading with him to leave his newspaper if he ever dropped it. I’ve been unsuccessful in finding it online – searching for “70’s NY subway PSA” yields only the “New York – let’s clean up New York” litter PSA. I’d be most grateful if your readers could help me pick off this almost-40-year-old scab!


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Name That Trauma:: Ashley M. on an Animatronic Arcade Rat

January 20th, 2015 · 1 Comment

Hey there, love your blog. I was hoping somebody could help me out. There was an arcade game that I remember from my childhood (early ’90s) that terrified me. I don’t remember the objective of the game or how it was played, but there was an animatronic, anthropomorphic rat that was the size of a small adult. It was in a glass box, and it may have been wearing a suit, but like a tattered hobo suit (it might have also been wearing no clothing and had really grody/tattered looking fur). Playing the game made it rattle around or animate somehow I think, but it may have just blinked and made a noise (I think it was a creepy, cackle laugh). Something about the rat was really crusty-looking, like it wasn’t cute or friendly looking I think it was deliberately supposed to look sort of gross/scary.

The one I remember was located in a Chuck E. Cheese on Long Island (although I’ve had friends tell me they remember the game from similar establishments). It had nothing to do with any of the franchise characters, and the one by my house was (I believe) removed when they removed the ball pits and replaced them with the toddler area. It was by the ball-pit in the one close to my house, sort of toward the back of everything, and every now and then if I got disoriented in the ball pit I would find myself too close to it. I’m really hoping, with all the birthdays that have been held in those kind of places, that somebody would have a picture with that freaky rat in it/remember the name of the game.

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