I watched The Exorcist for the first time when I was 11 years old. It terrified me. It traumatized me. I could not sleep for weeks. It has remain since, my all time favorite movie.
Funny, how a film which, like you've said, traumatized you, is your FAVORITE film ever since?
Nightmare on Elm Street scared the hell out of me when I was 8 and ever since this time I will NOT watch that film again, nor will I watch anything which is a horror-film and has been produced after 1970.
However, I enjoy old horror-films from the thirties to the sixties.
I'm a pre-1960 horror-flick person these days. I have seen a couple of the 'newer' ones, like the Friday the Thirteenth movies. I think I've seen at least one of the Halloween movies, at least the first Nightmare on Elm Street movies...never seen the Exorcist or Rosemary's Baby...they would have been before my time and I have no inclination to make an effort to see them. In my late teens I didn't mind a horror flick if I had a handsome date to cling to and bury my face in his chest, lol. Now, for psychological reasons, I avoid horror flicks pre-1960. There's a couple of them from the late 50's that I thought might be okay, but they still wigged me out.
I enjoy Vincnet Price but most of his movies are still a bit gorey and creepy for my comfort level, although I own several of them. Most of what I have I think are based on Edgar Allen Poe stories.
I enjoy the classic ones...the Frankenstein movies, the Dracula movies, Wolfman movies, Invisible Man movies and the Mummy movies. I have the newer Mummy movies in my Netflix queue, thought I might give them a shot now that I once again have a handsome man at my side!
When I was a child I had the misfortune of turning (the TV dial!) and saw Nosferatu rising up from the coffin. I had nightmares for months...and am sure that film took several years off my life. The Exorcist scared me to death 'cause when I'd close my eyes, I'd still hear those awful rantings of the devil...the sounds scared me more than the visuals. The last film that absolutely terridied me in the movies was Alien. I was only 2 rows back from the screen. Sheer terror. Another couple of years shaved off from my life!
The Exorcist scares me the most. The first time I saw it it didn't really get to me, but the 2nd time I saw it, it was all I could do to watch it to the end. Go figure.
To this day, I can't watch The Exorcist without cringing and peeking thru my fingers.
Night of the Living Dead now. I still won't watch it alone. When I was little it was The Blob. All I could think about was that carnivorous jello sliding under the threshold of my bedroom door at night when I was asleep.