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Killer Legends (2014)

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Delving into our collective nightmares, this horror-documentary investigates the origins of our most terrifying urban legends and the true stories that may have inspired them.

Director:

Joshua Zeman

Writer:

Joshua Zeman
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rachel Mills ... Herself - Researcher
Joshua Zeman ... Himself - Writer / Director, Cropsey
Stephen Winick Stephen Winick ... Himself - American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
James Presley James Presley ... Himself - Author, A Town in Terror
Casey Roberts Casey Roberts ... Himself - Media Manager at Texas A&M, Texarkana
Bill Ellis Bill Ellis ... Himself - Professor Emeritus, Penn State
Robby Robertson Robby Robertson ... Himself - Director, Texarkana Parks and Rec
Mark Bledsoe Mark Bledsoe ... Himself - Phantom Expert
Jereme Kennington Jereme Kennington ... Himself - Local Phantom Expert
Ed Goad Ed Goad ... Himself - Ret. Lt. Pasadena Police Dept.
Craig Smyser Craig Smyser ... Himself - Former Reporter, Houston Chronicle
Mike Hinton Mike Hinton ... Himself - Former Asst. District Attorney
David Crump David Crump ... Himself - Professor of Law, University of Houston
Carol Haley Holt Carol Haley Holt ... Herself - Friend of Janett Christman
Mary Beth Brown Mary Beth Brown ... Herself - Local Historian
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Storyline

Four timeless urban legends continue to haunt the psyche of the American public. This documentary follows filmmakers Joshua Zeman and Rachel Mills as they investigate the true crimes that may have spawned these urban legends, while exploring how these myths evolved and why we continue to believe. The documentary probes the following legends: The Candyman: The film travels viewers to Houston, Texas, to explore the legend of tainted candy that strikes fear in parents every Halloween. Though the legend is prolific, in actuality there is only one documented case of a child dying from tainted candy: 8-year-old Timothy O'Bryan. Timothy was poisoned on Halloween by a real life monster who used the legend to hide his crime, earning him the nickname, The Candyman. The Baby-Sitter and the Man Upstairs: As the legend goes, a babysitter tormented by a twisted caller, learns that the sadistic calls are coming from inside the house. While the babysitter has become the go-to victim in so many of our... Written by Anonymous

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Taglines:

Be careful where the truth may lead ...


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 March 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Urban Legend Project See more »

Filming Locations:

Texarkana, Texas, USA See more »

Company Credits

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Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Connections

References The Phantom Speaks (1945) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Chilling documentary on popular urban legends and the real-life crimes that inspired them
17 March 2014 | by jaguiar313See all my reviews

In 2010 there was a chilling documentary called Cropsey about the real-life disappearances of five children in Staten Island and the urban legend it spawned. Now from Chiller TV, the director of Cropsey Joshua Zeman, is back with a new and equally unsettling documentary taking on four more classic urban legends and the real-life crimes that inspired them. Zeman and researcher Rachel Mills travel across the U.S. and dig deep to find the truth that inspired some of America's most chilling campfire tales… and truth is always scarier then fiction. Zeman and Mills first travel to Houston, Texas to investigate the murder of a little boy poisoned by tainted Halloween candy and quite possibly the case that started the popular fear-inducing Halloween urban legends of candy filled with glass, razor blades and poisons… of which there are actually no recorded incidents aside from this sad tale. We learn of the death of 8-year-old Timothy O'Bryan in 1974 and the intense police investigation which culminated in the arrest, conviction and eventual execution of the "Candyman", the man who poisoned the Pixie Stick that lead to Timothy's death and the start of these scary Halloween tales. Even more shocking was the man's name was Ronald Clark O'Bryan… the boy's own father. Proving the most frightening ghouls and goblins are the ones living in our very own backyards. The duo next take us to Columbia, Missouri to tackle the popular urban legend of babysitters being stalked by unknown fiends with the heart breaking rape and murder of young Janett Christman in 1950, who was sexually assaulted and strangled while babysitting for a local family. We are treated to an investigation that finds how the popular urban legend was fueled by the possibility that the same man may have committed a number of similar crimes and was never caught…though some unfortunate individuals were blamed for his heinous acts. Even more chilling is their research points to a man who was questioned but, never connected to the crimes… a man some of the victims knew as a neighbor and friend. This segment was particularly disturbing to think someone got away with murdering these poor young women and actually might have lived among them in plain sight. Zeman and Mills then travel to Texarkana to investigate a series of brutal murders of teens at a popular make-out spot that occurred in 1946 and inspired not only the urban legend of the "Hookman" but, the chilling horror classic The Town That Dreaded Sundown. We get another chilling investigation into a series of attacks and murders by a man dubbed "The Phantom", a crime spree that was never solved and even more unsettling is how the town is still haunted by these horrific events decades later and it has provoked some equally disturbing customs from the residents. Our final segment is sure to send goosebumps rippling up and down arms with a story touching on the fear of clowns and some really creepy clown cases and tales from the windy city of Chicago. For decades Chicago has suffered reports of clowns driving around in white vans trying to lure children inside and even more disturbing is that there are actually police reports and eye-witness accounts of this occurring… and the reports suggest there were more then one of these 'clowns' stalking the city. Thankfully, no children were abducted... that we know of. It's a case that has never been solved. We also get an in-depth look into a city that was home to the world famous Bozo The Clown show and to perhaps the spookiest clown creep of them all… John Wayne Gacy, who was convicted of killing over 30 people. Where did the fear of clowns originate?… Chicago apparently! All these stories are given some very thorough investigations by the documentary filmmaker and his researcher. We get some bone-chilling facts, shocking crime scene photos, interviews with those involved and visits to some of the actual locations which these real-life crimes and occurrences took place. It's very informative and the information provided can really be unnerving as we find the true start to some popular urban legends and the movies they inspired. And Zeman and Mills take us on this journey of discovery, eagerly trying to get to the bottom of these cases from which some of our culture's scariest bedtime stories have spawned. They dig deep and it's not only fascinating but, also quite horrifying that, in most cases, the perpetrators were never caught, or worse still, the wrong person was charged or suspected of the crime. And what better way to start an urban legend then an unsolved real incident?… and Zeman and Mills are more then happy to give us some hauntingly all-too-real facts that will make one sleep with a light on far more effectively than any movie or bedtime story. A very effective and disturbing documentary that chills and informs equally.


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