Be they gory, sexy or just plain WTF horror movies boast a tonne of pause-worthy moments just begging for closer inspection. Of course, back in the dark days before even terrible VCRs were a thing, this was nigh on impossible.
Even after film fans had widespread VCR ownership, it often took several frustrating minutes of rewinding and fast-forwarding to find that perfect pause-worthy moment only to be rewarded with a grainy, barely discernible image on our old, 15-inch big box tellies. It might have helped the atmospherics, but it was no good for clarity.
Nowadays, though, thanks to the arrival of DVDs and HD technology, we’re free to pause, re-watch and analyse moments frame-by-frame to our hearts’ content. Which is especially useful for horror mavens who all too often find ourselves asking questions like ‘What the f**k did I just see?’ and ‘Am I such a gore hound that I need closely inspect that gruesome death scene one more time?’ You probably already know the answer to that particular ditty.
From all-out gore fests to supposedly unsimulated sex scenes and scary subliminal frames some moments just deserve to be frozen in time.
12. The Exorcist – The Face Of Pazuzu
Back in 1973, William Friedkin’s demonic possession horror The Exorcist was purportedly so scary it had people fainting and vomiting in the cinema aisles. Of course, us horror fans have come a long way since then what with the advent of torture porn and all-out gore fests but the movie does still have the power to send a chill down our spines today.
We all know of its scariest, most infamous scenes – mostly centring around possessed girl child Regan and her head spinning, pea soup puke and crucifix based antics – but there are a few subtler but just as scary moments that may have escaped attention first time around.
In several brief flashes we’re given a sneak view of The Exorcist’s antagonist, ancient demon Pazuzu – firstly in Father Karras’ dream sequence and later when Regan is being exorcised. There’s also a couple more instances of Pazuzu’s ghoulish face in a remastered cut named The Version You’ve Never Seen released in 2000.