MIDNIGHT TERROR

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There are many haunts in the Chicagoland area, but this one stands out in its own way. Midnight Terror Haunted House is located in an old fabric factory on 111th Street in Oak Lawn, Illinois. When purchasing tickets to what is known as the “#1 must see haunted house in Illinois” anticipation had set in to experience the set design improvements that were made as well as seeing characters both new and returning in action. Finding the location of the haunt was relatively easy when using google maps for android users or apple maps for Apple/IPhone users. It is no mistake that you have arrived at the location when you see their logo illuminated via projector on the front of the building as well as seeing their outdoor que line tent and a banner featuring 2 of their characters. When arriving at their location, you notice that they provide free parking onsite; but on busier select nights you will park at the metra station and board a bus provided by Midnight Terror for transportation to the haunt. The first interaction you have is with the ticket booth and security, both were very pleasant and gave us a friendly reminder to make sure your mask is covering you nose and mouth per local covid guidelines. Ticketing for this event was very easy with purchasing tickets prior to the event and scheduling a time slot to walk through the attraction, it allotted to having little to no wait time and contactless ticketing. You will be emailed a QR code and when you arrive you will present  your QR code and they will disperse your group physical tickets to provide proof of purchase for employees indoors.

CATEGORIES

Midway/Que Line experience

 Due to their ticketing system and organized process of sending groups through, there was little to no wait time for it being a half off opening weekend. Once entering the outdoor que line you were greeted by a creepy clown as well as a live DJ for entertainment while waiting to enter the building for the indoor que experience. With a quick outdoor wait my group was then let into the building to an indoor que area that was well themed with t.v’s that were mounted to the wall that presented to you characters that you will soon meet when sent into the haunted attraction. Characters in the que area included a male slider that entertained the groups and did an amazing job with making everyone uncomfortable as well. During the time in the que area you saw many actors and actresses pass by. After you spent your time in the indoor que you were then sent into the rules room and introduced to a character with a gas mask who then told us the rules of the attraction and made sure we understood them before continuing, shortly after we were met with an actor who asked us to pledge our allegiance to Malum, who is the leading antagonist of the storyline in the first half of the attraction “The Factory”. The Actor then sent us into the first room of the attraction and the adventure began.

Eye Candy/Visuals

HIGHLIGHTED CATEGORY

 With their crew made up of tons of talented actors, actresses, set designers and photographers the show would be nothing without the makeup artists. They have an arsenal of professional makeup artists who are also mentors to the new up and coming makeup artists who are willing to learn the ropes. No matter their talent level by the end of their time with the mentors they too become amazing artists. Their work shines on the canvases that we call actors within the attraction. No application falls short of detailed and are disgustingly breathtaking. Not only is the makeup worth talking about, so are the costumes. Each costume that the characters wear are elaborate and well made with a touch of spooky “love”. One costume that stood out to me most, is the one of an actress who stood in a living room scene and had been monologuing about how “This was all her fault”. It was a beautiful black Victorian dress as if she was in mourning. The next most interesting factor to talk about is that each room had a very distinct odor, none of which were overpowering or caused a headache like most would when you have too much in a fogger or sprayed on costumes. They all fit each scene well such as one room that stood out to me in odor was the bathroom, it smelled like Clorox and garbage which stuck with me mentally because it smelt different than what most haunted attractions would make their bathrooms smell like. During the walkthrough all rooms and scenes flowed together very well and made the experience very immersive.

Walkthrough Experience

 

The walk through was moderately scary to the patrons as you heard screams as soon as you hit the ticket booth and multitudes of groups ahead of you while in the attraction. Midnight Terror offered a 50% off opening weekend ticket deal with a special offer code. When purchasing General Admission tickets you will see that they are $28.00 prior to any coupon codes provided via their Facebook page, when they have them. I would have to say, discount offer or not, the haunt was worth the money and had a definite bang for your buck! Total walk through time is approximately 30 minutes so that means you end up paying about a dollar a minute for your tour. The flow from room to room start to finish was smooth and followed the story line, which characters will keep you updated on while walking the path through the haunt. During the walk through actors and actresses alike entertained and ensured no conga lines were made in order to keep groups separate to enjoy the show. The only spot in the attraction where that was unsuccessful was in the “kitchen scene” on the factory side where at the exit of the room, a female actor did not communicate nor try to keep us entertained to ensure we did not conga with the group directly ahead of us. Other than that stand out experience 90% of the haunt made sure groups stayed well spaced out and with a good pace.

Actors

 

 Now, in the middle of the first portion of the attraction on the “factory side” there was a lack of actors. BUT, those of them that were in there made up for the fact there was an empty spot every so often with their immense talent. Actors throughout used their spaces well and crafted jump scares and well worked scares that caused you to experience screams all around. The actors really know how to entertain, with two standing out most in the “town” side of the attraction. One being Millie and her friend Sprinkles as well as a character in the que line prior to entering the school of “Black Oak Grove” who made you speak to his German speaking teddy bear. On the topic of actors, some through the haunt were off que and acted like a broken recorder where the scare they kept doing repetitively was no longer effective unfortunately, but nothing a little advice can not help. Most actors were very vocal and you could understand them very well when speaking.  None of the actors broke character and they kept everyone entertained. 

Originality/Creativity

HIGHLIGHTED CATEGORY

Every aspect of the haunted house is original from set design, costumes and even characters brought to life all around. This haunt is nothing but breath taking to the ones who appreciate scene and set design and is so worth getting a ticket to in order to see what is known as the #1 must see in Illinois!

Overall Grade

8.5

 Midnight Terror over all is one of a kind. It is almost like a home haunt on steroids, because to a majority of the cast and crew this building is home! Like stated previously throughout the review, this haunt does follow a storyline and a majority of characters will keep you informed about it throughout the walkthrough. Paying attention to the storyline and lines stated by the characters will improve your experience and make it feel as if you were in a movie while in the haunt. Props to those who did scene and set design because it was beyond amazing to see it all come together. Characters as well as makeup, and costuming are all very original and well done!

REP PERSONAL THOUGHTS:

While in some scenes actors did not seem to understand personal space and awareness and got way too close. As well as twice I had experienced hair dangling in my face from actors that were climbing and hanging in certain rooms. But, in some scenes I anticipated scares and saw them coming but still became startled as well! One thing I would personally change or adjust in their last scene outdoors is to possible reduce or tone down the strobe lights. It caused a pretty bad headache for myself and few others in our group.  Unfortunately enough to cause me not want to attempt the mobile escape rooms or axe throwing that they provided outside of the exit. All in all, I believe the show is beautifully put together and is so worth seeing.

KERRI ANN STAS

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