Small towns are supposed to be innocent havens away from the city, where everyone knows everyone else’s business and the neighbors come over for dinner every Saturday night. Horror movies love contradicting these stereotypes, assaulting the suburbs with possessed school kids, demonic birds, and serial killers.
The latest village to get a spooky makeover is Los Alamos, New Mexico in Icon Entertainment International’s latest release Let Me In, starring Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Road) and Chloë Moretz (Kick-Ass). Set in 1983, bully target Owen befriends the new girl at school, Abby. But Abby’s arrival suspiciously coincides with a number of brutal murders within the community.
To celebrate the 5th of November opening of Let Me In, here are 6 other towns you should avoid at all costs:
Norristown, Pennsylvania – The Lovely Bones (2009)
Be aware that every resident in a small town has skeletons in their closets (sometimes literally). Fourteen-year-old Susie Salmon (Saoirse Ronan) is violently murdered in her neighbor’s den in his house. Susie watches from heaven as her family tries to solve her murder. Determinedly, a detective and Susie’s father work together to expose her neighbor’s homicidal tendencies.
Gatlin, Nebraska – Children Of The Corn (1984)
On the outside, Gatlin looks like a sprinkling of houses enveloped by cornfields. One year the corn crop fails, and people turn to prayer to help. A boy-preacher named Isaac, played by John Franklin, gathers the children of the town and brainwashes them, claiming the failure was caused by a demon called, “He Who Walks Behind the Rows.” Isaac persuades the kids into a revolution, killing all the adults in the town as sacrifices. The film reveals that because villages are isolated from the rest of society, you can get away with anything.
Haddonfield, Illinois – Halloween (1978)
A six-year-old Michael Myers (Will Sandin) kills his sister with a kitchen knife. The boy is thrown into a mental institution where his psychiatrist deems him the essence of evil. Fifteen years later, Myers escapes and returns to his hometown of Haddonfield. He stalks and kills the teenage girls in the town, using a knife as his weapon of choice.
Springwood, Ohio – A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)
Slasher Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) causes the murder spree that strikes the fictional Midwestern town of Springwood in 1978. Teenagers suffer from nightmares, and if they die in their sleep, they die in real life. The film reveals the sad truth that children who grow up in their parents’ hometowns will receive the backlash of their parents’ past mistakes.
Ambrose, Louisiana – House Of Wax (2005)
Sometimes southern hospitality has an ulterior motive. Six teenagers on a road trip have car troubles and make their way to the ghost town Ambrose. They visit the town’s only attraction, the wax museum, but are soon pursued by the museum’s murderous owners. The brothers want to add the teenagers to their exhibit.
Bodega Bay, California – The Birds (1963)
A wealthy playgirl, played by Tippi Hedren, journeys to an isolated Northern California beach town in order to pursue a potential boyfriend. Suddenly, crows and seagulls begin to attack the townspeople. The film reminds viewers that nature is more powerful that humans; even the smallest creature can create chaos.