10 Movie Communities With Dirty Secrets

Small communities–and even some large ones–can be tight-knit. Everyone helps everyone else out, and all of the neighbors are properly neigh-didly-eighborly. But sometimes, “cozy” can just as easily mean “private”. Or worse yet, it can mean “xenophobic”. Outsiders aren’t to be trusted, especially not with dirty secrets. Here are ten movie communities that kept their secrets in the dark.
Note: there is potential for spoilers here, but I’ve ducked out on any major specifics.

Children of the Corn (1984)
Gatlin, Nebraska
There are a bunch of kids with names like Isaac and Malachai. There is no normal, non-Amish community that houses kids named Isaac and Malachai.

An American Werewolf in London (1981)
East Proctor
It may come as a shock, but the town whose most popular hangout is a joint called “The Slaughtered Lamb” happens to have a dirty secret. Squint real hard on the moonlit moors and you may just discover it.

High Plains Drifter (1973)
Lago (Hell)
Only Marshal Jim Duncan can peer into the hearts of Lago’s citizens and see their cowardice.

Hot Fuzz (2007)
Sandford is a perennial powerhouse in the Village of the Year awards. With the lush greenery, swans, and friendly residents, it’s a wonderful place to visit… unless you’re a crusty juggler or a living statue.

Toy Story 3 (2010)
Sunnyside Daycare
After their pal Andy ages and disposes of them, the Toy Story gang land on their feet at a seemingly-wonderful oasis where they can spend the rest of their days bringing joy to children. But not all is as it seems thanks to a nefarious pink bear with a southern accent.

Village of the Damned (1960)
Professions you wouldn’t want if you lived in Midwich: daycare employee, school teacher, bus driver, librarian, and sewer inspector. Although really, that last one is a profession that you wouldn’t want anywhere, Midwich or otherwise.

Sauna (2008)
Unnamed Finnish town
The movie is called Sauna. Guess what the town’s secret is about.

The Wicker Man (1973)
The island might seem like a nice place to spend a holiday, but you definitely don’t want to be around during harvest season. And if you’re keeping count, this is the fourth town in the UK on the list. I thought that the UK might be a great place to visit, but I’m really starting to have my doubts.

The Village (2004)
Covington, Pennsylvania
What evil creatures lurk just outside of this quaint 19th century village? As it turns out, many of the village residents know, but they aren’t telling.

The Stepford Wives (1975)
Stepford, Connecticut
Admittedly, the movie popularized the phrase “Stepford wife” to describe a certain kind of woman, thereby robbing the fictional Stepford of its secrecy.


Filed under Movies

18 responses to “10 Movie Communities With Dirty Secrets

  1. NIce list matey, would Arlen County fit in? With its Hillbilly Mafia? Probably not

  2. Nice list. I’ve never been, but there’s actually a a bar called The Slaughtered Lamb here in New York–based, I’m pretty sure, on An American Werewolf in London.

  3. Great list mate. But THE VILLAGE? Seriously? I thought that was an awful movie. Nice to see some familiar favourites though, such as THE WICKER MAN and HOT FUZZ.

  4. I would add The White Ribbon to this list! I’m actually surprised it’s not on the list 😉

  5. MJ

    I don’t know about Malachai, but Isaac has been in the top ten most popular baby names list for a decade now. And all towns are hard on living statues.

  6. rtm

    Wow, such an intriguing and original list, but then again I can’t expect any less from you John!

    The Stepford Wives is soooooo creepy, really it just gives me the hibby jibbies even just seeing the poster of the robotic-looking Nicole Kidman, man how many Botox injections did she take for that?? [shudder]

    I quite like the underrated The Village, Joaquin and Bryce Dallas Howard were both very good in it. Oh and Hot Fuzz of course, I LOVE seeing Dalton as a villain, he just stole every scene he’s in!

    • I always chuckle when I hear Dalton’s name because I guess Edgar Wright has taken to occasionally referring to him as “Mr. Pricklepants” in reference to his Toy Story character. Come to think of it, how great is it that Dalton’s in two of these movies?

  7. On behalf of the UK and our prospering tourist industry, I’d like to add the charming town of Royston Vasey from The League of Gentleman.

  8. Newsy Poplar

    How is ‘Bad Day at Black Rock’ not on the list. One of the best movies this guy has ever seen.

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