The Amusement Park was finally discovered, forty-six years after it was initially completed by the well-known director George A. Romero in 1973. After resurfacing, it has received a 4K restoration and is now available to movie lovers worldwide for the first time.
The film introduces an older man (Lincoln Maazel) who has decided to spend his day at a popular amusement park, hoping to have a good time. Shortly after the older man buys his ticket, he begins to experience several horrifying and unsettling moments.
As a film, I’m excited to say The Amusement Park is a unique style of horror. Firstly, this is not your typical horror movie. The film introduces many moments of creativity as it reveals the ultimate horror- what it is like to be an older adult in America. There are many clever ideas the film brings to the surface to get its message across. These are ideas that seem so simple, yet they’ve never been in cinema before. One example of this is when we witness our lead attempting to go the dodgem cars. First, witnesses that older people must pass an eye exam or won’t be allowed to drive ever again. We then witness firsthand the consequences that occur when an older person is involved in a car (I mean dodgem car) accident.
From start to finish, the entire film is designed to make movie lovers think and consider the ageing population in the present day, and the film reminds its audiences even if you’re not an older person, one day you will be. To my surprise, even though this film was made forty-six years ago, it feels highly relevant in the present day.
There are moments on screen that will most certainly shock and unsettle its viewers. Upon my first watch, I can understand why the film was shelved upon completion. While moments are unsettling to watch, I found myself highly impressed by the film’s concept. Many scenes deliver powerful moments, and most of them were near impossible to forget as they are so thought-provoking. The runtime is short and brief, ending within fifty-two minutes.
Overall, it’s pretty amazing that George A. Romano made a movie in 1973, which has finally surfaced thanks to the good people at Shudder! This is unlike anything I have ever seen from George A. Romero and cinema. The Amusement Park is a world that is unforgettable and yet disturbing. It is a unique horror style filled with creativity that will have its viewers feeling and sympathising with every moment on screen. Visiting The Amusement Park is worth your while, and who knows, maybe I will see you at the park one day.
1st June 2021
Written by Peter Walkden
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Our opinion on this feature has also been submitted to Rotton Tomatoes (Audiences Score*)