In The Village Ivy's father reveals to her that the monsters plaguing the town are actually just the elders in disguise. He said that they were based off of rumors in the history books he'd read of monsters in the area. It is revealed later in the film that he had been a professor of history at the University of Pennsylvania.

These rumors they based them off of, are they an actual myth in real life or just made up for the film? I'm guessing it might be Bigfoot or the Sasquatch but I don't really know. The big thing is that the film takes place in Pennsylvania (probably?) so it would have to be local to that area.

  • I think Ivy’s father added the little piece of “rumors of monsters in the history books” to keep that hint of doubt in her mind that although yes, Those We Do Not Speak Of are fake (the elders)......there actually COULD be real creatures in the woods.....and the elders capitalized off of that idea. In this way, he revealed to her the partial truth about the village but kept that hint of fear within her so she wouldn’t want to just leave altogether. There would still be real danger out there (in her mind), which might have contributed to the fear she had during the spat with Noah in the woods. Jan 5, 2021 at 3:27
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    I used ot live in Chalfont, Bucks County, Pennsylvania,a bout 30 miles from centery city Philadelphia. There are few reports of bigfoot like creatues in Pennsylvania, but one of he few is a reported 2004 sighting by kids in Chalfont. Black bears are common in Pensylvania - one was vidoetaped in Chalfont a few years ago - and have many qualities that monsters would have, although fortunately they are rarely aggessive toward humans. . Jan 5, 2021 at 20:41

1 Answer 1


I think the usual approach to any mythical/monster/ghost story is two-fold.

In-universe, the mythical beast can really be anything - the characters are bound by the script to believe in it (or not). The explanation to them is a part of their character and a part of the plot being portrayed to us, the audience.

Out of universe, for it to feel appropriate to the audience, though, it must contain sufficient reference or recall of 'known real-world' myths of monsters or beasts. They don't need to exist in our world, they just need to be 'already known' to the audience - be it vampire, dragon or minotaur. This enables swifter understanding of the myth as a plot point.

This way, if a beast has hints of, say, bigfoot, or a troll, or a fairy or a unicorn, the audience already has sufficient knowledge of that creature in their own cultural background as to not be confused when hearing of a version of it inside a movie plot. This can allow the plot itself to unfold with less exposition needed for the audience's sake.

Once that is established - then the movie can surprise us by not being what we'd thought.

You may notice that for any truly 'unimaginable' monster, considerably more exposition goes into the plot to keep the audience up to speed, at a pace to match the narrative timing for that exposition. If they do it well, you don't notice it happening - you have to step back to see how they did it; usually on second or third watching. I'm thinking along the lines of the first 'Alien' where we had no clue where it was going, but they spent a lot of time telling us, for that information to then turn out to be wrong, several times.

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