Horror movies have gone through a lot of changes over the years, and unfortunately not all eras are as good as others. The 70s and 80s for instance saw a lot of low-budget horror b-movies made that everyone should probably forget. Not all of them are bad though. In fact not only are some of them cult classics today, but some are even considered masterpieces. The Scary of Sixty-First feels like one of those throwback horror movies, but unfortunately it’s far from a masterpiece, or even a cult classic. It’s one of those films you should consider not watching in the first place.
The Scary of Sixty-First is the story of two friends, Addie (Betsey Brown) and Noelle (Madeline Quinn), who find an apartment in New York’s upper east side that is shockingly within their budget. They assume it’s due to the fact that the apartment needs a serious cleaning even to be livable, but there’s more to it than that. A mysterious stranger (played by director Dasha Nekrasova) tells them a secret. Through her, they discover the apartment used to belong to Jeffrey Epstein, and he used it as part of his sex trafficking ring. Noelle decides to assist the stranger in her personal investigation into the case. Meanwhile, Addie starts to exhibit strange behavior that turns those closest to her away.
There is no doubt that The Scary of Sixty-First was meant to be an absurd movie. You get a strong sense of that from the very beginning. Then, it’s apparent that Nekrasova shot the film on 16mm stock (thanks to the grainy picture). It also uses cheesy old-school horror music and has horrible acting. There seems to be point to using the current events of the Jeffrey Epstein and Prince Andrew scandal. But it’s mostly unclear what it was.
The only clear reason that the script incorporated them in the movie is to make the film even trashier. The film really feels like a student project. One meant as a tribute to the old films of the 70s and 80s. It doesn’t add anything new to the equation. As I say that, the professor would give high grades to it because it accomplishes the tribute. But that doesn’t mean it’s something that should come out to the general public.
The Scary of Sixty-First runs too long at 81 minutes and may have been better as a thirty minute tribute to a Tales From The Darkside episode instead. That way they could have cut out a lot of the unnecessary clutter, and tightened up the story. As it stands however, it’s really just a waste of time.