You’re home. You’re quarantined. You know it’s in your and everyone else’s best interest that you wash your hands regularly with soap and water. Most people do this without thinking knowing this act could potentially save lives.

However, there are a select few who cannot wash their hands without a horror movie playing in the background or the foreground or the other limitless grounds one might have in and around the house.

You’ve never heard of this condition. Be glad. Be grateful. Because it’s a true medical malady that’s in all the medical journals and websites that only real-life doctors with medical licenses and medical passwords can access.

Don’t bother asking any doctors you know. They’re bound by the Hippocratic Oath to never ever reveal this esoteric medical fact. Don’t even look it up on the internet, because you won’t be able to find it unless you’re a doctor.

What’s the name of this disease you might ask? I’d tell you but it’s got a lot of vowels in irregular places and more syllables than you’d expect. You wouldn’t even think it’s a real disease but those that suffer from this condition know it all too well.

This very helpful article is for those people only. For those of you with the ability, nay, the PRIVILEGE (all caps so you know it’s important) to be able to wash your hands without a horror movie playing need not read this life-saving game-changing based-on-true-story article. Fee free to click on one of the many insightful movie reviews. This list is not for you.

*dramatic pause*

Good. Those people have left.

Now to you good folks who were one unwashed hand or hands from getting sick, this list is for you.

Read it. Wash your hands to it. Forward it to other people that you know with this condition but were too afraid, too ashamed, too inert with terror to ask for assistance.

Don’t thank me.

Nope. You really should thank me because not to put too fine a point on it, this list and by extension, me meaning I have just saved your life.

So when we get through this together and we’re all allowed to move freely about the cabin that is our earth and people are surprised to see that you’re still alive because you were able to wash your hands with soap and water while watching a horror movie and they say something like “Hey ______ (insert your name here EG. Carla or Carla), I thought you’d be dead because you suffer from that rare condition where you can’t wash your hands with soap and water without a horror movie playing,” then you thank Nightmarish Conjurings and me personally by name.

You’re welcome, in advance.

On to the list…

BLOODY BIRTHDAY (1981)

This dusty VHS gem features some of the best looking cakes ever featured in a horror movie. It would be worth having 3 children born during an eclipse of the sun that turns them into murderers if only to feast your eyes and feast your mouths on those delicious cakes. Sorry to keep going on about the cakes but during the quarantine my favorite bakery is closed due to safety precautions and the owners got eaten by an alligator from Crawl (RIP Stacy and Wes). Anyway, this movie has also been known to kill germs when played while washing your hands. Mulitple doctors say this is true and it’s been backed up by all the important scientists that know a lot about science. Just wash your hands throughout the entire running time of the movie.

Question: It’s an 85-minute movie. Isn’t that a massive waste of water and won’t your hands get all prune-like and wrinkled?

Answer: Possibly, but there’s also the probability that you will die if you don’t follow these scientifically-backed directions to the letter. So if you don’t have any more pointless questions we can move on to the next movie. Lives are at stake.

THE LIGHTHOUSE (2019)

Robert Eggers’ (The Witch) 2019 B-and-W chiller makes you want to wash your hands even if there were no threat of a deadly virus simply because you get the feeling as you watch it that stars Robert Pattinson and Willem Defoe didn’t wash any part of themselves while they were filming. This is one of the most beautifully dirty movies ever made.

Fun fact – Willem Defoe suffers from the same condition that you readers suffer from. He cannot wash his hands without a horror movie playing. During the filming of THE LIGHTHOUSE, instead of a monitor playing a movie, Robert Pattison acted out scenes from Nosferatu and 2020s The Grudge remake. Defoe didn’t die, so I guess you can also have someone act out horror movies. Provided they’re professional actors. Like actually paid, not “I’ve got an audition before my shift at the diner” actors.

Question: THE LIGHTHOUSE was released in 2019. The Grudge remake was released in January 2020. How could Robert Pattinson possibly perform scenes from The Grudge when the movie hadn’t even been made yet?

Answer: He’s just that good.

BTW – You don’t have to wash your hands through the movie’s entire running time. You can stop the first time you see a seagull or you don’t understand something Willem Defoe says.

SAFE (1995)

Yes, Todd Haynes’ art-house masterpiece isn’t technically a horror movie, but it remains one of the scariest non-horror movies I have ever seen. Anchored by one of Julianne Moore’s best performances, SAFE makes you want to wash your hands, face, nether regions and then dip yourself in bleach just to make sure. Then you realize that nothing you do will keep you…safe.

Don’t actually dip yourself in bleach. But if you haven’t seen SAFE in a while, it’s worth another look and I tell people it’s reason #562 that white people frighten me.

Question: SAFE is a great movie. But I want to get back to the previous question about The Grudge remake. The Lighthouse was released in 2019 while The Grudge remake was released in January 2020. How could Robert Pattinson possibly —

Answer: You need to shut the fuck up right now. I’m not talking about that again. Ask another relevant question about SAFE so I can help these good people wash their hands.

Question: What’s reason #257 white people frighten you?

Answer: Etsy. Tied with how loud they get when they order dessert in a restaurant. Also tied with when they drone on about home-brewed beer. Also tied with mass genocide.

COLOR OUT OF SPACE (2019)

Richard Stanley‘s magenta-tinged mini-masterpiece makes a previously impossible-to-adapt HP Lovecraft story into the best Nicolas Cage movie of the 20-teens without the word Mandy in the title. Why is COLOR OUT OF SPACE so helpful while you wash your hands?

It’s a well-known fact in the medical community that Nicolas Cage’s voice cleans and disinfects any and all germs within a 40 feet radius.

Question: Is that why he makes so many movies? Even if most of them are terrible?

Answer: Exactly. Cage makes so many movies so that long after he’s passed away, his movies will be available in case there’s another outbreak of something. For example, in 2034 there will be a virus rampant in eastern Alaska. The Alaskan government will play the National Treasure movies on blast. The virus will be defeated in less than 5 days.

When coronavirus is finally eradicated, Nicolas Cage will make a movie about how his voice destroys all harmful germs.

THE LITTLE STRANGER (2018)

Ostensibly labeled a horror movie, this 2018 snoozer is scary only because of its innate ability to bore people to tears. And that’s how it fights germs. When you attempt to wash your hands while playing this movie, germs would rather kill themselves than watch it to the end. I put this on the list last because this is the most powerful anti-germ movie and also the most dangerous. While watching it, viewers could get so bored that they might throw themselves off a cliff as an act of mercy. Only use this movie if you don’t have access to the other movies. Or if you’re a member of the Gleeson family. I know there are a lot of you.

There you have it.

5 movies to wash your hands to.

5 movies that will save your life.

5 movies that could possibly save the world.

*We are not medical professionals – this entire listicle is fictitious – if you are showing signs of the coronavirus, please reach out to your doctor. Also, we don’t think anything will happen to Alaska – we love Alaska. Stay safe, wash your hands, and stay indoors!

Noel Penaflor
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