Carny

Keep both hands on your money.

Though, even if you do, you’re still likely to have little left in your wallet by the time the grifters who run this show are done.

Pretty much everyone is a sleazebag in this tale of life spent forever moving from town to town, and that includes the lead trio.

Jodie Foster, the best there ever was, is a standout as a young woman looking to leave her stifling home life far behind, while Gary Busey and Robbie Robertson are appropriately soaked in cynicism.

Not a sweet movie, but a nicely tart one.

Freaks

“One of us. One of us.”

Still one of the most-disturbing horror movies ever, an 88-year-old curio which no modern-day studio would likely touch.

Employing a cast of real-life carnival sideshow performers, many of whom had real disabilities, it tells a sordid tale of a “normal” woman seducing a dwarf.

Cleopatra, a slinky trapeze artist, fully intends to straight-up murder the rube and make off with his money, but sometimes the best-laid plans get a little twisted.

As in the carnies chase down and gain revenge on our jezebel, brutally transforming her into what is termed a … “human duck.”

Yikes.

 

Something Wicked This Way Comes

There’s a storm a’comin’.

A carnival blows into town, bringing with it wonders and delight, but dark secrets hide beneath the surface in this adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s page-turner.

Mr. Dark (a silky Jonathan Pryce) seems to peer into each person’s soul. But at what cost?

Come for a ride on his carousel, and your dreams can come true – just ignore the prickle of fear which works its way up your spine each time the ringmaster flashes a sad, haunting smile.

Are you a true child of the ’80s if this film isn’t embedded in your memories?

I think not.