Sunday, October 21, 2007

Pee-Wee's Big Adventure is no horror film, but the scene in which young Pee Wee encounters truckdriver Large Marge on a dark lonely stretch of desert highway bears all the makings of one.

If you didn't jump out of your seat upon first seeing this bit, you have no soul. Or, you're an adult. For the generation who saw this film as kids during its initial 1985 release (myself included), the Large Marge sequence had a definite impact. The sudden blast of cartoonish hideousness was a full force assault on young brains not expecting such craziness in a supposed kid's film. It was a terrifying jolt, but it didn't keep kids away from the film. If anything, it drew them in as schoolyard word of mouth spread. Pee-Wee's Big Adventure became a staple viewed over and over, even though, for some, Large Marge was seen only through fingers held tight to the eyes.

At least that's how I remember it.

- Phil Morehart

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