Chicago Suburb’s Legend Depicted in New Movie

October 02, 2011

I grew up in several different towns around Chicago, and each one’s residents had an urban legend to share about a person, a home, a cemetery or even a road that involved a scary story from the past.

I did not grow up in the Chicago suburb of Bartlett, but that town has its own tale to tell, and it will premiere on the big screen this weekend.

Munger Road” is an independent horror film that debuts at the Charlestowne 18 theatre in St. Charles this weekend and will be at other movie houses starting Oct. 7.

munger road being shot around chicagoland

"Munger Road" was shot over 16 days in Chicago suburbs.

The low-budget film was written and directed by St. Charles native Nicholas Smith and shot over 16 nights in St. Charles, Elburn, Geneva, Sugar Grove and Bartlett.

The film covers a legendary tale that takes place on Munger Road, which is located in Bartlett, about 15 minutes outside of St. Charles.

The story goes something like this: On Munger Road, there is a train track where a boy was killed. According to the legend, if you park your car on the tracks, put it in neutral and sprinkle baby powder on the trunk, the fingerprints of the boy will appear.

In addition, two other murders took place just off Munger Road; a woman was found strangled near the tracks back in 1982 and a man’s body was found murdered about 12 years ago. Both crimes are filed under ‘Unsolved Murders’ on the DuPage County Sheriff’s website.

“Munger Road” tells the tale of a group of teens who venture along the road just before the annual St. Charles Scarecrow Fest when things go terribly wrong.

If you are from the area, you might recognize such locales in the film as the Municipal Center, the fire and police stations, Baker Memorial Church, Hotel Baker and Smitty’s on the Corner. If you are really familiar with the town, you might see local police officers and firefighters who appear in the film as extras.

Chicago Sun-Times’ Roger Ebert gave the movie three stars and ends his review with: “I’d say the ending leaves it open for a sequel,” so maybe we will see even more of our Chicago suburbs on the silver screen.

But keep your viewing to the screen: Because of the new movie, Bartlett police will be stepping up security around the area, so try to quell that urge to drive west and check out Munger Road.

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