What is “Cropsey?”

Urban legends are nothing new. Almost every town has one to call their own. But sometimes a legend has roots in reality. Maybe that’s the case with Cropsey?

Growing up on Staten Island, children had often heard the legend of ‘Cropsey.’ For the kids in their neighborhood, Cropsey was the escaped mental patient who lived in the old abandoned Willowbrook Mental Institution, who would come out late at night and snatch children off the streets. Sometimes Cropsey had a hook for a hand, other times he wielded a bloody axe. Cropsey was always out there waiting to get them.

Later as teenagers, filmmakers Joshua and Barbara assumed Cropsey was just an urban legend: a cautionary tale used to keep them out of those abandoned buildings. That all changed in the summer of 1987 when a 13-year-old girl with Down syndrome, named Jennifer Schweiger, disappeared from their community. That was the summer all the kids from Staten Island discovered that their urban legend was real.

Now as adults Joshua and Barbara have returned to Staten Island to create Cropsey, a feature documentary that delves into the mystery behind Jennifer and four additional missing children. The film also investigates Andre Rand, the real-life boogeyman linked to their disappearances. Embarking on a mysterious journey into the underbelly of their forgotten borough, these filmmakers uncover a reality that is more terrifying than any urban legend.

Without digging too deeply into the subject, there doesn’t seem to be much information on the net regarding the subject of Cropsey, but there is plenty of stuff on convicted killer, Andre Rand. The trailer tries to play on the audience’s consciousness of fear and ends up looking like a bad episode of “Ghost Hunters.” The details of the case and what really happened on those streets in the late 80’s is more interesting to me than investigating something that is obviously no more than an urban legend. So if it sticks with that and doesn’t try to give us too much “Blair Witchiness”, I think this could be a potentially interesting a worthwhile look at a (serial?) killer and the grip of panic he held on the area.

We’ve stuck the trailer beneath the seats here; plus, the Official site has all sorts of crazy and highly detailed information on the subject if you’re interested further.

 

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David Brook
Admin

Isn't Cropsey the name of the killer in The Burning? I wonder if the case was an influence?

Joshua Zeman
Guest

Thanks for the post. Check out screening times for our release here – andrew, I think you'll like what you see. http://cinemapurgatorio.com/movies/cropsey and join our fb as well.. .http://www.facebook.com/pages/CROPSEY/79662920621?v=wall

Joshua Zeman
Guest

Yes, Cropsey was the name of the camp caretaker in The Burning which was popular urban legend at sleepaway & boyscout camps in the 40's & 50's in upstate NY. That's probably where the weinsteins (yes, the weinsteins) probably got the name for their monster, its the same urban legend that eventually filtered down to Staten Island, where we used the name for our local boogyman, expect in this case, he was real and he was out there snatching kids.

Sumit
Guest

Saw cropsey 2day and googled abt it..was andre rand pressuriesed by the police to seek the bodies of other children ? R they still missing ? By the way it terrific movie…

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