Hobbit4Lyfe's Rules for Being a Horror Movie Character
Rule 1: If you're a woman, be careful. If the killer/monster comes after you, don't be afraid to defend yourself. If you don't, you absolutely will die. See Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho (especially Marion Crane).
Rule 2: If you're a woman, don't be blond. See rule number 1.
Rule 3: Do not, I repeat, do NOT go in the basement. Bad things happen in the basement. See Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho (especially when Lila finds Mother there). See also Psycho II (when the young man gets killed down there, and the girl almost does too, while Norman's locked in the attic; when Lila tries to get her Mother costume down there; when Mary runs away from Norman).
Rule 4: Do not take a shower. See rule number 2.
Rule 5: Do not sell your soul to the Devil. Of course the Devil is going to get the better of you, and you'll be doomed to Hell. Think of the "be careful what you wish for" cliché. See Nicolas Cage in Ghost Rider.
Rule 6: Vampires are scary bloodsuckers. They absolutely DO NOT sparkle (cough cough… Cullens, this means you…). See the various versions of Dracula (especially the Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee ones). See also The Lost Boys.
Rule 7: The nice guys aren't always so nice. They could be psycho killers. See Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho (especially Norman Bates).
Rule 8: Don't try to bring back the dead. Things will always go wrong. See the various versions of Frankenstein, and any other movies that deal with various forms of reanimation. See also my essay called 'Til Death Do Us Part?.
Rule 9: If you're in an Alfred Hitchcock movie, watch out for birds. See the killer birds in The Birds. Also see the various bird references in Psycho (for example: Marion Crane, Norman Bates' taxidermy birds, Norman's quote "You… you eat like a bird."). Also (also), the scene in North by Northwest where the man is chased through the field by an airplane could be seen as an attack by a man-made bird.
Rule 10: Do not make love when there's a serial killer on the loose. Especially don't do it on their turf. See the Friday the 13th series, especially the first one. See also the first Psycho II example in rule number 3.
Rule 11: Don't say Beetlejuice's name three times. Enough said.
Rule 12: Get Caller ID. If you don't recognize the number, don't answer the phone. It's just possible that the killer's on the other end. Just don't answer it, even if it ends up killing you anyway. See the opening sequence of Scream. See also One Missed Call.
Rule 13: Watch out for clowns. Prime example: Stephen King's It.
Rule 14: Zombies are slow-moving. See Night of the Living Dead and other classic (i.e. older/George A. Romero) zombie movies.
Rule 15: Look in your backseat. There's a good chance the killer is hanging out in your back seat, waiting to, you know, kill you. See Urban Legend. See also See Let Me In and Interview with the Vampire. (Special thanks to CinemaBlend: . )
Rule 16: Don't go into a graveyard alone. For example, take the "Father's Day" segment in Stephen King and George A. Romero's original Creepshow.
Rule 17: Listen to the locals' legends/stories/warnings about the notoriously creepy place in town. Chances are, they'll be right. See the Daniel Radcliffe movie The Woman in Black. (Special thanks to Lysi Nothuna.)
Rule 18: Make sure you check out a house's history if you aren't its first owner. See the various versions of The Amityville Horror. (Special thanks to /editorials/211922/special-feature-11-things-horror-movies-have-taught-me/?utm_source= &utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=zergnet_26129.)
Rule 19: Don't bully people. Eventually, the victims will snap, and people will get hurt. For example: Various versions of Stephen King's Carrie. Also, unfortunately, this happens way too often in real life.
Rule 20: If you're a writer, don't be in the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, especially not during the middle of winter. See various versions of Stephen King's The Shining and Misery.
Rule 21: Don't drink and drive. That's what caused the accident that got Paul Sheldon held captive by Annie Wilkes in the first place in Stephen King's Misery.
Rule 22: If you're famous, try not to meet your fans (Stephen King's Misery). They may seem nice at first, but they'll turn out completely nuts (again, see Misery. Also, the bit about people being unexpectedly crazy also applies to rule number 7).
Rule 23: If you're camping in the woods, don't use the "restroom" alone, especially at night. For example, Supernatural Season 1 Episode 2, "Wendigo."
Rule 24: Be careful around lakes. You don't know what kinds of dangerous things are in the water. Examples: The first/original Friday the 13th movie; Supernatural Season 1 Episode 3, "Dead in the Water."
Rule 25: Don't do the whole "Bloody Mary" bathroom ritual. It never ends well. Examples: The actual urban legend, and Supernatural Season 1 Episode 5, "Bloody Mary."
Rule 26: Watch out for big black dogs. Even if said dogs aren't really demonic in nature, they could be a cover-up for dangerous humans. For example: The Grim in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the computer game Nancy Drew: Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake, and every incarnation ever of the Sherlock Holmes story The Hound of the Baskervilles.
Rule 27: Be aware that even the most mundane, everyday animals can be killing machines. See Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds, Stephen King's Cujo, and the Jaws series. (Suggested by kornerbrandon; examples 2 and 3 added by the author.)