In or Near NYC? Attend the Rick Trembles Cartoon Slideshow on July 9th! - Dread Central
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In or Near NYC? Attend the Rick Trembles Cartoon Slideshow on July 9th!

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Are you a fan of the Rick Trembles’ Motion Picture Purgatory feature on the site? Curious about what makes a guy like him tick? Well, if you’ll be in or near New York City this coming Saturday, July 9th, then you won’t want to miss the Cartoon Slideshow and Animated Movies Screening taking place at the Word Up Bookstore.

In or Near NYC?  Attend the Rick Trembles Cartoon Slideshow on July 9th!Here are the details from the free event’s Facebook page (be sure to RSVP if you can make it):

MOTION PICTURE PURGATORY DECENSORTIZED!

Undead & in person next to the slithery slideshow screen, using hand-drawn biographical anecdotes, Rick Trembles will make you tremble as he narrates how he first got into macabre movies & the comix medium as a youngster & what made him think he could merge the two! He’ll detail his weekly comic strip Motion Picture Purgatory’s bumpy early controversial history & give insight into how he picks apart films with his patented process of condensing pertinent plot points via creepy x-ray vision cross-sections, maniacal maze-like aerial views, & screwy schematics!

From King Kong to Clockwork Orange & The Candy Snatchers, don’t miss Trembles’ titillating alternate terror-tinged take on the history of cinema! Come say hi face-to-face to the cartoonist THE GUARDIAN called “a genius” & ROBERT CRUMB declared “even more twisted & weird” than himself, & he’ll personally sign & doodle all over copies of his FAB Press books for you, Motion Picture Purgatory Volumes 1 & 2!

The free event takes place from 4pm to 6pm, Saturday, July 9 at Word Up, 4157 Broadway @ 176 Street, Washington Heights, New York City!

Rick Trembles’ critically acclaimed hybrid comic strip movie criticism column Motion Picture Purgatory has been appearing every week in the Montreal Mirror since 1998 (after originating in the same pages with the paper’s inception in the 80’s). Trembles continues to make animated short films that occasionally tour the globe & continues to play in his 30-year-old post-punk band The American Devices. His more experimental comix work has been featured in numerous galleries & published internationally. The L.A. Times called him “a famous free thinker,” & Concordia University English Professor Marcie Frank featured Trembles in her chapter about comix for the book QUEER DIASPORAS (Duke University Press).

Trembles’ 3 short animated films will follow (each of which he’ll discuss in his slideshow): GOD’S C*CKSUCKERS, DECENSORTIZED, & the award winning GOOPY SPASMS based on the comic strip of the same name that was recently published in Danny Hellman’s comix anthology Typhon Volume One.

In addition, following the show there will be a screening of another short film, this time live-action: Girls of Prey by Lezsther Rott & Jamie Ross, in which Trembles plays a murderous cult member.

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Children of the Fall Review – This Israeli Slasher Gets Political

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Starring Noa Maiman, Aki Avni, Yafit Shalev, Iftach Ophir, Michael Ironside

Directed by Eitan Gafny

Reviewed out of Utopia 2017


Slashers are a subgenre of horror that are often looked down upon. After all, what can a movie about a killer slaughtering multiple people have to say about, well…anything. Those of us in the community know full well that this is nonsense and that any kind of horror movie can be a jabbing (no pun intended) commentary on society, culture, politics, art, etc… And that’s precisely what Eitan Gafny aims to do with Children of the Fall, one of the few Israeli slashers ever created.

Set on the eve of the Yom Kippur war, the film follows Rachel (Maiman), a young American woman who comes to Israel to join a kibbutz after suffering some serious personal tragedies. Her goal to make aliyah (the return of Jews to Israel) is however hampered by some rather unpleasant encounters with local IDF soldiers and members of the kibbutz. Pushing through, she makes friends with others in the commune and her Zionistic views are only strengthened, although they do not go untested. Once Yom Kippur, one of the holiest holidays in Jewish culture, begins, a killer begins picking off the kibbutz workers one by one in violent and gruesome ways.

Let’s start with what Children of the Fall gets right, okay? As slashers go, it’s actually quite beautiful. There are wonderfully expansive shots that make use of the size and diversity of the kibbutz. The film opens with a beautiful shot of a cow stable, barn, water towers, and miscellaneous outbuildings, all set against a dark and stormy night. The lighting of this scene, and throughout the film, is also very good. I found myself darting my eyes across the screen multiple times throughout the film thinking I’d seen something lurking in the shadows.

The kills, while unoriginal, are very satisfying. Each death is meaty, bloody, and doesn’t feel rushed. In fact, the camera has no problems lingering during each kill, allowing us to appreciate the practical FX and copious amounts of blood used. And if you believe that a slasher needs to have nudity, you won’t be disappointed.

The acting is middle of the road. Maiman is serviceable as Rachel but the real star of the film is Yafit Shalev as “Yaron”. His range of emotion is fantastic, from warm and welcoming to Rachel when she arrives to emoting grief and pain during his Yom Kippur announcement where we learn that he was a child in a concentration camp. The rest of the cast are perfectly acceptable as fodder for the killer.

So where does Children of the Fall stray? Let’s start with the most obvious part: the runtime. Clocking in at nearly two hours, that’s about 30 minutes too much. The film could easily have gone through some hefty editing without affecting the final product. Instead, we have a movie that feels elongated when unnecessary.

Additionally, the societal and political commentary is very in-your-face but the film can’t seem to make up its mind as to what it’s trying to get across. Natalia, a Belarussian kibbutz worker, raises the concept of Israeli racism, misogyny, and xenophobia, her hostility unabashedly pouring out in the midst of IDF soldiers, locals, other kibbutz members, and more. Is there validity to what she’s saying? Undoubtedly. But there is also validity to Rachel’s retorts, which include calling this woman out on her own vitriolic views. This back-and-forth mentality frustratingly prevails throughout the film, as though Gafny was unwilling to just commit.

The dialogue is also quite painful at times, although I attribute this to difficulties with translating from Hebrew to English. Even the best English speakers in Israel don’t get everything perfect and the little quirks here and there, while charming, are quite detracting. Also, why is this movie trying to tell me that Robert Smith of The Cure is a character here? While amusing, it makes absolutely no sense nor does it fit in Smith’s own timeline.

Had this film gone through a couple rounds of editing, I feel like we’d have gotten something really great. Eitan Gafny is definitely someone that we need to be watching very closely.

  • Children of the Fall
2.5

Summary

While Children of the Fall has a lot going for it, it has just as much working against it. Overly long, you’ll get a really great slasher that is bogged down by uneven social and political commentary.

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Netflix to Tell The Frankenstein Chronicles in the States

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There’s still a big part of me that wonders why Universal – or anyone for that matter – has not been able to reboot classics like The Mummy, Dracula, and Frankenstein. Maybe they’re trying too hard? Maybe they keep putting the wrong people at the helm?

Look at del Toro’s The Shape of Water… It’s pretty much a new version of The Creature of the Black Lagoon with a heavier emphasis on the relationship between monster and chosen mate. Even though there are a couple of hokey parts, it really works and is excellent. So maybe we need to look elsewhere throughout the world to meet with success. Case in point: “The Frankenstein Chronicles.”

Variety is reporting that the hit six-episode UK series starring Sean Bean will be coming Stateside and more via the ever-growing streaming service Netflix.

This deal opens the way for Netflix to make further seasons should it resonate with its U.S. and global subscribers.

“The Frankenstein Chronicles” is a re-imagining of Mary Shelley’s classic novel. Set in 1830s London, Bean (“Game of Thrones”) plays John Marlott, a war veteran and river policeman. Season 1 of the serialized show sees him investigating the case of a corpse made up of body parts from different children and finding the matter involves senior establishment figures and demonic forces.

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Guardians of the Galaxy’s James Gunn Returning to the Horror Genre

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Know what’s funny? We horror fans have known how good James Gunn was all along. It just took the rest of the world time to catch up! Now that Gunn has made his big Hollywood bones with his two Guardians of the Galaxy flicks, he’s returning to the genre to produce a new horror flick! Oh, happy day!

Word came across our desks that Gunn has signed on to produce an untitled horror feature with The H Collective. It was written by James’ brother Brian and cousin Mark Gunn. James will produce the project in between writing the highly anticipated feature Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 and starting production. Gunn’s longtime collaborator David Yarovesky will direct.

The H Collective will fully finance the project and produce alongside Gunn and his shingle, Troll Court Entertainment. Brian and Mark Gunn, Dan Clifton, and The H Collective’s Nic Crawley will executive produce.

The project is expected to go into production in the spring of 2018 and brings Gunn back to his horror roots. The filmmaker, whose credits included mostly fan-favorite horror gems like Slither prior to writing and directing Guardians of the Galaxy, is responsible for turning the Marvel property into one of the most memorable franchises in the Marvel universe.

More as we get it!

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