Joe Dante’s distinctly American genre career has focused on the horror of suburbia: Gremlins, Small Soldiers, The Hole and, even in title, The ‘Burbs all concern what can happen in our very neighborhood—be it supernatural, science fiction, or just plain ol’ crazy neighbors. Not to be confused with the primarily 80s and 90s staple sub-genre of the Domestic Thriller (such as Poison Ivy or The Babysitter), Dante’s Suburbia Horror almost always positions families, rather than a sole individual, as victim or perpetrator, at the center of the terror. At the center of The ‘Burbs is a family…or two.
Tag: The ‘Burbs
“I hate cul-de-sacs. There’s only one way out, and the people are kind of weird.”
THE ‘BURBS makes me anxious. Leaving aside the fact that I saw it far too young (either my babysitter or my parents were under the impression that it was a loveable Tom Hanks comedy; my sister and I both lost sleep because of their mistake) the film still leaves me twitching in my seat. It is funny, but never light, and honestly creepy. The film’s isolation and insulation are the major sources for my angst and the genuine sources for the horror in THE ‘BURBS.