Fantastic Fest Begins Next Week! Here Are Some Movies To Get Excited About Part 1!
Can't wait. I've already started watching some of the entries to this year's Fantastic Fest, and I plan on covering the everloving hell out of this festival. I want to see as much as I can and yet try to stay coherent throughout - unlike last year where I had to bail early, this year I'm staying for the whole enchilada, from FRANKENWEENIE to RED DAWN, and hopefully many, many movies in between. And at some point I'm going to make my way over to the Ritz and see THE MASTER in glorious 70MM. It's going to be a hell of a week.
If you're going, stop and say hi - I'll be the bald, goateed dude with the goofy smile on his face. Okay, that doesn't quite narrow it down. This is only my second Fantastic Fest but if I only go to one movie festival a year for the rest of my life, this is the one I'd pick. There are so many different genre films, so many unique visions, and Fantastic Fest isn't about playing the Oscar wannabes (although some, like THERE WILL BE BLOOD, have screened there) but about playing that crazy, fucked up, but amazing film that you would have never thought about seeing before. An open mind is required.
So, here's a list of some of the movies I'm most excited to see at Fantastic Fest this year. Some you've probably heard about, and some you might not have. But I'm going to make my best effort to see as much as possible and write about everything. Here goes - kinda half-assed alphabetically:
THE ABCS OF DEATH
This movie to me is probably Fantastic Fest in its entirety shrunk down to two hours of gore and irreverent humor. I know some of the people involved in the making of this movie, and I have no idea what to expect except, hopefully, to laugh my ass off when I'm not horrified or vomiting. Which is probably the exact reaction that all 26 filmmakers are hoping for.
THE AMERICAN SCREAM
This documentary, from the guys that brought us BEST WORST MOVIE, is about haunted house fanatics who go a little bit mad during Halloween and decorate for the holiday. I can appreciate a documentary like this - I always dug Halloween a bit more than Christmas - and I especially loved it when the neighbors went all out and scared the crap out of all the little kids. There was one house on my street that had an actual graveyard in the backyard, and every year he'd put candles on all the graves. Creepy as hell. This looks like a lot of fun, and Fantastic Fest will have the world premiere of THE AMERICAN SCREAM.
Looks like the mutated acorn doesn't fall far from the pulsating vagina tree, as Brandon Cronenberg, son of David Cronenberg, brings us a movie about designer celebrity viruses and the people who love them. I've heard mixed reports about this movie, but many of them come from reviewers who, frankly, aren't really equipped to handle this kind of movie. At Fantastic Fest, however, this will be the perfect audience. This one's a can't-miss for me if I can help it. Hell, the trailer alone isn't for the squeamish.
BERBERIAN SOUND STUDIO
Oh dear. The sounds from this trailer alone are terrifying to me. Toby Jones stars as a motion picture sound man who goes to work on an Italian horror movie and gets more than he's prepared to handle. I love how the trailer isn't overtly gory, but the soundscapes are utterly scary and unnerving. This played very well at Toronto this week, and for this crowd, I think this will be one of the hottest tickets of the fest. Another must-see for me.
COCKNEYS VS. ZOMBIES
I'm still not tired of zombie movies, although many of you may be. And this one looks pretty damn fun - Alan Ford (Brick Top in SNATCH) especially looks like he's having a fun time. Dig the walker/zombie gag at the end. Yeah, we've seen enough zombie comedies to last a lifetime, but something tells me that this one's going to be quite the kick in the bollocks. Zombies + automatic gunfire = my ass in a seat, most days.
COME OUT AND PLAY
I've read a bit about this one, but haven't watched the trailer yet, and it was just announced today that Cinedigm has secured the rights for a US release, so you may be seeing this soon. Beth and Francis, awaiting the birth of their first child, decide to take a vacation. They wind up on a remote island where only children remain, and all the adults are missing. Beth and Francis discover something horrifying has happened and they must find a way to get off the island before the children... well. Sounds like CHILDREN OF THE CORN, a little bit, but the response from Toronto was mostly positive, so I'll be checking this one out.
I'm seeing this for a lot of reasons (Ron Perlman!) but the biggest one is that this is directed by Charles de Lauzirika. Fans of Ridley Scott may know this man - he's the guy who directed all those wonderful documentaries about BLADE RUNNER, the ALIEN Anthology, and BLACK HAWK DOWN, among others. So the guy's learned filmmaking from the masters, and certainly from some of the greatest genre movies of all time. Now that he's made a genre crime movie all his own? I'm excited to see what he's capable of. It won the Best First Feature Award at the Fantasia International Film Festival this year, and it looks damn impressive. Plus, Ron Perlman!
THE DOOMSDAY BOOK
Kim Jee-Woon (I SAW THE DEVIL) and Yim Pil-Sung (HANSEL AND GRETEL) want to show you the end of the world. Knowing these two filmmakers, that means at some point we're going to be disturbed, horrified, and extremely grossed out. I hope so, anyway. This one's going to be another hot ticket at Fantastic Fest, I'd imagine - Jee-Woon's films have always played well here, and this movie with three stories about humanity's end is sure to be, judging from this trailer, at the very least visually impressive. Meteors, sentient robots, zombie viruses... what's not to love?
I'll admit, I wrote this movie off, thinking it was just THE RAID all over again (and to be fair, this movie had finished production before THE RAID was even released). But then reports started coming in, from Comic-Con, from Toronto... this movie shouldn't be so easily dismissed. It's as loyal an adaptation to the comic book as fans could possibly want, and it wipes clean away the Sylvester Stallone movie. (To also be fair, I kinda dig that movie but on a "so bad it's kinda good" level.) I also hear that the 3D gore is tremendous, with blood and viscera spraying all over the damn place. DREDD 3D plays opening night at Fantastic Fest, and it's going to be a serious toss-up between this and FRANKENWEENIE. And speaking of...
I've had mixed opinions of Tim Burton's live-action work for the past couple of years - loved SWEENEY TODD, hated ALICE IN WONDERLAND, indifferent to DARK SHADOWS - but it cannot be denied that when Tim Burton does animated stuff, it's always paid off so far. This one looks to be no expection, and I love how the animation has opened up the original short movie to something rather epic in proportion. I'm reeeeally curious to see what happens to that kid's goldfish. FRANKENWEENIE is a World Premiere at Fantastic Fest this year, and following it will be a wonderful party at the Highball where people will dress up as their favorite movie monster. It's going to be a tough call for me on which movie to pick, DREDD or FRANKENWEENIE, but I'm leaning towards this one. I adore classic monster movies, and if this one, like PARANORMAN earlier this month, introduces kids to all the joys of those wonderful movies, I think it's going to be worth it.
And that's it for tonight - I've only gotten to the 6th letter of the alphabet, and I haven't included a few movies already. Pound for pound, this is going to be an amazing year at Fantastic Fest, and hopefully you can make your way down to the Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar and take part in the crazy festivities. I'll have more tomorrow!
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Sept. 14, 2012, 9:53 p.m. CST
Sept. 14, 2012, 10:18 p.m. CST
Sept. 14, 2012, 11:13 p.m. CST
re CRAVE. Great to see Aussie actor Josh Lawson showing his depth in a dramatic role! As an accomplished comedic actor it looks like Lawson is relishing the chance to 'dip' into darker territory...and NO I'm not his agent! Onya mate.
Josh Lawson was a regular guest on the Australian TV show 'Thank God You're Here' and was always a highlight with his incredible ad libbing and ability to create situations and momentum that was both inventive and very funny. check it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5997FTVu2Sw
Sept. 15, 2012, 1:15 a.m. CST
Sept. 15, 2012, 5:38 a.m. CST
by Dr Eric Vornoff
...is a remake of 'Who Can Kill Child?', isn't it?
Sept. 15, 2012, 7:35 a.m. CST
It looks like something out of a '50s Japanese saucer men movie. Somehow the Stallone version did look as ridiculous because it doesn't look as cheap and it's Sly under there so you know it's campy anyway. But this guy looks so serious and earnest, it's funny. I heard good things about the movie itself though and I hope it does well. As for Rothman, every time a useless studio suit gets ousted, a dead indie filmmaker gets his wings.
Sept. 15, 2012, 9:07 a.m. CST
Man, wish I could make it there for this alone. I *love* Danger 5, and it's being shown at FF in its entirety. Still a little under the radar over here, but really worth checking out. I read that they will also be serving cocktails based on the recipes from the show! If you don't know what Danger 5 is, check out the link to the trailer. Jealous of you all who can make it!!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Z09bNgSeMI
Sept. 15, 2012, 10:42 a.m. CST
Obviously a remake. I'm not a big fan of the original - save a few cleverly macabre touches - so hopefully this version is better. The original director's OTHER film from the early 70's THE HOUSE THAT SCREAMED is a very cool film though that pre-dates the slasher genre and feels very DePalma. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend people check it out.
Sept. 15, 2012, 10:47 a.m. CST
A shot-for-shot remake. And yeah, looks as crappy as th original.
Sept. 15, 2012, 11:44 a.m. CST
So what if it has the same plot as The Raid, after seeing it last weekend in Glasgow I can faithfully report that it does indeed knock it out the park. Alex Grland and the team have done a great job on a limited budget. Karl Urban does great work here and isn't afraid to leave the helmet on. Olivia Thrilby also nails Anderson and you'll be surprised at just how gritty this movie can be... It earns it's 18 rating the hard way.
Sept. 15, 2012, 9:46 p.m. CST
Looks like the mutated acorn doesn't fall far from the pulsating vagina tree - HAHAHA! Excellent turn of phrase!!!
by golden tribw
Sept. 15, 2012, 10:06 p.m. CST
Antiviral looks cool but honestly every single thing other than that looks like derivative played-out amateur crap
by golden tribw
I could go through them one by one explaining why they all suck, but what's the point? I'll watch Antiviral and hope for a good time.
Sept. 15, 2012, 10:06 p.m. CST
by golden tribw
Sept. 16, 2012, 1:31 p.m. CST
The original WOULD YOU KILL A CHILD? is one of those deeply disturbing 70s chillers that, while not gory by today's standards, really, really gets under your skin. Way better than CHILDREN OF THE CORN, with a really fucking bleak and creepy ending. Well worth seeking out.
Sept. 17, 2012, 11:11 p.m. CST
Everyone seems to think he did and I've always felt sorry for the guy who did...totally got shafted.
Sept. 19, 2012, 8:32 a.m. CST
Love those fantastic fest posters. Looks like this will be the last one. Not gonna miss this year's theme next year.. One way or the other!
Sept. 19, 2012, 8:54 p.m. CST
by Adelai Niska
Sound Studio seems cool since I always think sound is more effective in horror than visuals. Maybe some day it'll come out on dvd so I can watch it.
Sept. 20, 2012, 3:47 a.m. CST
Looks patronising as fuck. Smug, condescending pish. Just goin on the trailer, mind, which means next to nothin. Also, "From the mind of Brandon Cronenberg"... Christ's rib, is that meant to mean something? No more does it mean than would "From the throat of Francis Bean" or "From the drums of Zack Starkey" or "From the man behind the woman behind the man behind your fella out that thing with the eyes that have teeth in." The lad might be a genius, but we've nothing to judge him by yet, so don't sell me something on his "mind" like I should know by now what the cunts is in it, if anything. God oh, rubbed me up ninety-nine ways past wrong, that trailer. Bet the film turns out to be a whole load of grand.
Sept. 20, 2012, 9:07 p.m. CST
Has anyone watched The Dark Knight Returns Part 1 streaming on Amazon yet? I really liked it. Hopefully after Part 2 is done they decide to do The Long Halloween followed by Dark Victory. Wouldn't mind a good night of Year One, TLH, DV, and topping it off with TDKR 1 & 2. And after seeing that Star Wars anime I wish they would do a straight to video Shadows of the Empire or something in that style.
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