It's that time of year again, when we all want nothing more than to get a good scare and hide under the covers, sure that if we let nothing more than the whites of our eyes show, they won't be able to get us. Who are "they"? I don't know! But "they" are everywhere and "they" are scary! And doesn't everyone want to be scared? So that we can all know we're ALIVE? Yes!
But isn't part of the pleasure of being scared related to how realistic those frights actually are? And one of the problems with horror movies is that they frequently take place in some abandoned house on a hill in some remote location. Or they take place in the woods. Or some creepy Californian suburb. All of these places are terrifying and everything, but the doom feels so much less imminent when it happens far from home.
And I don't know about you, but I like my doom to feel imminent. I like to feel my doom breathing down the back of my neck so that all my hairs stand on end and I lock all the doors in my apartment and cower in the corner, waiting for the sun to come up. And if you're the same, you'll appreciate this round-up of horror movies that take place here, right in our very own city.
This is only one of the best scary movies of all time. And although it takes place in Manhattan's iconic Dakota, this film is incredibly applicable to today's Brooklyn. Because there is no doubt in my mind—no doubt AT ALL—that half of the kids being pushed around in strollers in Park Slope are all the spawn of the devil. I mean, I guess their mothers love them, but still. Scary.
What is a C.H.U.D.? It's an acronym for "Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dweller." SCARED YET??? You should be, because this movie preys on one of New Yorkers worst fears, namely that there are mutated psychopathic killers living below the streets of the city, just waiting for you to walk too close to an open sewer, where they will grab your ankle and pull and pull until you get sucked into the bowels of the city. To be EATEN!
Maybe not the scariest movie ever made, but certainly a classic New York movie that should be watched at least once a year. And, actually, I still get a little creeped out by the whole Dana as Zuul levitating off the bed thing. Even if she did look pretty amazing for someone who was being possessed by pure evil. Clearly, pure evil really knows how to dress.
The Devils' Advocate
To summarize: Al Pacino is the Devil, Keanu Reeves is Satan's spawn, and Manhattan is Hell on earth. All of this makes perfect sense to me.
Scary monster from out of space! I kind of think that the best thing about this movie is that it features some of my favorite New York architectural landmarks, like Grand Central Station and the Woolworth Building. Any movie can use the Statue of Liberty or the Empire State Building, using the Woolworth Building shows some real NYC cred.
Scouting New York turned me on to this movie, which is a classic tale of people turning into panthers and, you know, killing other people while in the throes of PASSION. Passion and horror go hand in hand. Also, in my opinion, intimacy and horror go hand in hand. AAHHHH!!!!
This movie combines many scary, scary things: competitive business card exchanges, an inside look at Manhattan real estate, men's grooming routines, and bloody, bloody MURDER.
So, this is not set in New York AT ALL, but is instead set in Salem, Massachusetts. However, today I came into work and the fabulous Virginia Smith had brought her copy of Hocus Pocus in for me to take home and enjoy at my leisure. This movie is amazing. It features Garry Marshall as the Devil, sort of. And a cat who can talk and also is cursed to live forever. N.B. when I first saw this movie as a kid, I thought the cat's name was "Zachary Binx" but that the characters all said "Zachary" with a lisp so that it sounded like "Thackeray." Well, in reality, the character's name is "Thackeray." The more you know etc.
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