A good horror movie doesn't just scare you for 90 minutes straight, it scars you for life. A genre classic can introduce new reasons to fear otherwise innocuous things, branding you with irrational phobias straight through adulthood. Take Child's Play, for example. What did this movie ruin for us? Dolls. Never since Chucky have inanimate playthings carried the connotation of innocence. 'Toy Story' kind of helped, but couldn't undo the damage. [United Artists]
Photo: United Artists
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What It Ruined: Clowns. Stephen King took the pre-Cold War joys of Bozo, Emmett Kelly, and Clarabell, and made them malicious monsters hiding behind blood-curdling masks. [ABC]
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What It Ruined: Cat. Another King entry, this one took the already-none-too-pleasant species of house cat and made of it a vengeful, hell-sent beast. [Paramount]
Photo: Paramount Pictures
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What It Ruined: Hallways. You can't turn a corner in an empty building without worrying you'll find yourself face to face with an ocean of blood... or a pair of creepy twin girls. [Warner Bros.]
Photo: Warner Bros.
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'Look Who's Talking Too'
What It Ruined: Toilets. Not a horror movie, of course, but this scene from the family comedy made nighttime trips to the bathroom a hell of a lot more terrifying. [TriStar]
Photo: Tri-Star Pictures
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'Ernest Scared Stupid'
What It Ruined: The woods. Again, not really a horror movie... But take a look at these gargantuan monstrosities, equipped with the power of turning young children into wooden dolls. Nightmares are inevitable. [Buena Vista]
Photo: Touchstone Pictures
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What It Ruined: TV. Ah, TV. Our dear, sweet friend. The distraction from all of these terrors. But no more. Now, thanks to Poltergeist, we fear even you. What kind of a hellish world is this? [MGM]
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'A Nightmare on Elm Street'
What It Ruined: Sleeping. Which is just about the worst. After this movie, we couldn't even hope to fall unconscious and free ourselves from these torturous thoughts... because if we did... we might turn into a geyser of Depp blood. [New Line Cinema]
Photo: New Line Cinema
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What It Ruined: Everything. Television, little girls, VHS tapes, wells, horses, boats, necklaces, flies, mental hospitals, our parents, phone calls, Brian Cox. Everything. [Dreamworks]