AOL NEWS ON THE SCARIEST FILM SCENE :
'Here s Johnny!' scene is scariest
Jack Nicholson's crazed cry of "Here's Johnny" as he axes his way through a door in pursuit of his wife has been named the most terrifying screen moment of all time. The chilling scene in Stanley Kubrick's The Shining topped a poll for a Channel 4 special The 100 Scariest Moments. It beat other movie horrors such as the spinning head in The Exorcist and the heart-stopping moment in Jaws when a severed head tumbles from a hole in a boat.
Viewers voted for their top hair-raising scene over a number of weeks this summer from a shortlist from film and TV drawn up by a panel of experts. In the 1980 film The Shining, based on Stephen King's novel, Nicholson is widely regarded to have given one of his most manic performances in a career packed with off-kilter roles. He plays author Jack Torrance who is suffering from writer's block and becomes caretaker of the empty Overlook Hotel - taking his wife and son with him - in the secluded mountains of Colorado in order to let his creative juices flow. Jack, affected by both his inability to write and supernatural forces within the hotel, suffers a mental breakdown, prompting him to try to kill his wife.
Wild-eyed and grinning he pokes his head through a door panel he has splintered with an axe to utter his notorious line "Here's Johnny", which he actually ad-libbed during filming. Set designers had created a false door of thin wood fearing the actor would not be able to break it, but his powerful technique shattered it into tiny pieces so a real door was eventually used. The scene pushed The Exorcist (1973) into second place for the stomach-churning moment when Linda Blair's head spins round and she projectile vomits. The underwater head scene in Jaws (1975) was third.
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I'm sure i can think of tenser scenes though. And quite a few have come from the Lecter movies. Perhaps when Dr Lecter first handcuffs that security guard to the cage bars in Silence of the Lambs. The suprise moment of Lecter's hand leaping from the right of the screen and the grinning look on Lecter face. Omg. Another one was from Red Dragon, where the reporter is taped to the chair and old Fiennes is going off on one about Red dragons and ultimate power. Combined with Elfman's wonderful scoring, i remember being incredibly tense during that scene, wondering what he was going to do to him. Nail biting stuff indeed. Both those scenes are ones in which the victim is trapped and the terrifying potential of what could happen next is the nail biting key to it's sucess. It gets your imagination working immediately before the actual event is shown. Being "trapped or cornered" is always a great film making method i guess. All very interesting.