The Film That Finally Scared Me
This is about how Relic (2020) became the first film in years to finally scare me.
So, if any of you guys have seen any of my posts or read any comments, I occasionally mention in a non-edge lord way that I just don't get scared any more by horror movies. Don't get me wrong, I adore horror, all subgenres of it (some more than others). I’m looking at you Conjuring series. But anyway, even though I love nothing more than sitting down to watch these films I always feel I lost something as I've become so desensitised to it all.
Now before I get into the film that changed it, a little back story that might be triggering for some and I just want to give you a heads up.
I was brought up by my mum on her own. She and my dad divorced, on decent enough terms so no real animosity, but I lived with her and only saw my dad for 2 weeks a year at best. Because of other issues we ended up living with and then close to my grandparents who basically helped raise my sister and me while my mum worked. During my childhood, my grandfather was my main father figure and I adored him. He was strong, brave and knew everything (well to me anyway).
Skip forward 20 plus years and my grandad got sick through an infection in his leg. In turn, the blood poisoning triggered the early stages of dementia and eventually my grandmother and mother had no choice but to put him in a nursing home. Before they did this I had interacted with him a few times and had never enjoyed it as I never felt like the person I was with was my grandad. This in turn felt selfish because how dare I feel bad you know, so when he was put in the nursing home I made every excuse under the sun not to go see him. I just couldn't. Five or maybe six years passed. I stayed away… then one day I just got up and went. I walked in with my mum and sat down beside him. I want to say he recognised me. I want to say I saw a twinkle in his eye as his brain triggered something. I want to say I hugged him and told him I loved him… But none of that happened. He looked at me (more through me) then asked my mum who's this and then proceeded to get angry when saying he didn't have grandkids. I left and a few months later my grandad passed. I miss him terribly but I'm not ashamed to say I only miss the time before he got sick.
I'm sorry if you're wondering what this has to do with horror movies. One night in 2022 when the world was still falling apart during lockdown after lockdown, I put a little film on called Relic (2020). (I always feel I have to add the date so as not to confuse people with the ‘90s banger about a monster in a museum.)
I knew very little of the film but as it played I began to realise the theme (don't really want to spoil it but you can probably guess).
This film destroyed me but also scared the shit out of me. Not in a jump scare, slasher type of way but in a now I have a family to look after and the thought of looking into my wife’s or two daughter’s eyes and fighting to remember them or downright forgetting them way. The final scenes of this film are heartbreaking beyond anything I've ever seen. While I understand it might not hit the same notes for everyone, having the knowledge that dementia or alzheimers can be somewhat hereditary terrifies me. Also it made me realise that I can't imagine how scared my grandad must have been at times and for that I'm sorry I ran from him for so long.
Sorry if this blog isn't cheery or fun but I feel sometimes film really does make you look at things differently and come to terms with things in your life you didn't think you could. Also, I honestly didn't think before this group I could have told anyone this story, but all you lot are amazing