Back in October, we reported that Suzanne Desrocher-Romero, the wife of the late zombie grandfather George A. Romero, had established the George A. Romero Foundation as a way to restore both his past works and help inspire future filmmakers.
At the time, she hinted at unused scripts, Living Dead sequels, and a forgotten film of his from 1973, to which she stated: “We’re gonna restore it, and we’re gonna show it to Romero cinephiles. It’s a scary movie, but it’s not a horror movie, and it’s about ageism.”
That film is The Amusement Park, an unnerving, 60-minute experience that’s been likened to a PSA on age discrimination. Although it was shot for TV, it was never used, which is why most Romero scholars have never heard of it. However, that will soon change, according to author Daniel Kraus.
(Classic Film Review: Night of the Living Dead Will Scare the Hell Out of Every Generation)
On Saturday night, the best-selling writer behind Trollhunters and The Shape of Water blew up the horror-verse on Twitter when he announced that he was watching the rare print, calling it “a revelation” and “Romero’s most overtly horrifying film.”
Similar to Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, the premise is rather straightforward and uncomplicated: An old man simply attends an amusement park, only to stumble into a real-life nightmare. If anything, it sounds like material ripe for Tobe Hooper.
“The people who funded it wouldn’t allow it,” Kraus wrote in his lengthy Twitter thread. “And no wonder. It’s hellish. In Romero’s long career of criticizing American institutions, never was he so merciless. Where can you see this savage masterwork? You can’t. But I’m dedicating myself to changing that. Can you help? Yes, probably. Give me some time to figure out what’s what.”
As one fan pointed out, you can help drag this forgotten gem from the grave by sending $10 donations to the George A. Romero Foundation. Based on everything Kraus has shared, it’ll be worth every penny. Read the full thread below.