For the next nine days I’m going to be in Austin, Texas taking part in Fantastic Fest, the most amazing film festival the world has ever seen. There’s a lot happening over the course of the next week and a half, and I’m very honored to be sitting on the Horror Features jury this year. I’ve already seen a bunch of the films in the Horror competition and I have to say that this is a bumper crop for frights in Austin.
After Fantastic Fest my traveling does not end. I’ll be flying right from Austin to Europe for some cool stuff that will make for great content on the site when I am finally able to discuss it. I’ll be back in LA on October 7th, and I imagine I’ll be taking over my usual posting duties again on the 8th. This trip doesn’t mean I won’t be updating – in fact, I hope to bring you a lot of reviews and interviews from Fantastic Fest – but you may see my name on fewer news story bylines for the next two weeks. I’m sure Renn, David and Alex will be incredible at bringing you all the movie news you need in that time.
And just for the hell of it, here are ten films that I’m either excited to see at Fantastic Fest or have already seen and know they’re great. Keep an eye for reviews of these films in the days ahead:
Zombieland – More comedy than horror, Zombieland is nonetheless a pretty great comedy. The zombies are secondary, but with the great characters and great gags, you’ll barely miss the walking dead.
Antichrist – Lars von Trier’s movie made a big splash at Cannes, winning an anti-prize for misogyny. That alone means I’m dying to see the film, and that’s not even taking into account the apparently gruesome aspects of the movie.
Love Exposure – A four hour Asian movie about a religious man who becomes an expert in upskirt photography to save his father’s soul? Okay, I’ll watch that.
The Revenant – A soldier comes home from Iraq undead, somehow turned into a vampire that must feast on human blood to keep from rotting. Nothing that you expect happens in this overstuffed, weird, imaginative, gory movie.
A Town Called Panic – This movie is a Belgian stop motion film made using toys. It’s based on a local TV sensation, and it’s supposed to be utterly bizarre, totally anarchic and utterly family friendly.
Dread – This adaptation of a Clive Barker Books of Blood story is supposed to be utterly disturbing and unnerving. That’s what I like to hear about horror movies.
The Human Centipede – A mad scientist joins people together at the soft, mucous-y parts to create three being creations. Apparently totally gross and horrifying. I’m sold!
Survival of the Dead - I wish the buzz was better on this one, but it’s the new George A Romero zombie movie. How do I not go see it? And the man himself will be in attendance!
Down Terrace - Not every movie at Fantastic Fest is a ‘genre’ film. This dark comedy is about a group of old criminals trying to keep it together; written by one of the guys behind Time Trumpet, Down Terrace is apparently exactly the sort of dramatically comedic film that gets us at CHUD psyched.
The Bare Breasted Countess - I’d want to check out this Jess Franco sleaze classic even if the man himself wasn’t in attendance. But he will be, along with his leading lady/muse Lina Romey, and I’m so excited to meet him and watch his movies in his presence that I can barely contain myself. This is, for me, probably the most exciting thing going on at Fantastic Fest this year, and this is a year chock full of celebrities and premieres.
There are also five secret screenings – I don’t know what they are, so don’t ask – as well as lots of other great films like Trick ‘r Treat, Ninja Assassin and Paranormal Activity playing. If you’re at the Alamo for the festivities feel free to stop and say hi!