Fantasia Film Festival
The full Fantasia 2013 lineup has now been revealed, and we have here the third and final wave of titles to share. Prepare to drool!
From the Press Release:
The Fantasia International Film Festival is proud to announce the rest of our 120-feature lineup that comprises our 2013 event, along with a string of additional details that mark our 17th edition as a standout. Fantasia will engulf the city of Montreal from July 18-August 6, 2013. Be sure to visit the Fantasia Film Festival website for detailed essays on every title announced here, as well as all films previously disclosed over the last weeks.
Before we get started on titles… MEET OUR 2013 JURIES
MAIN COMPETITION FOR THE CHEVAL NOIR AWARD FOR BEST FILM
Jury President: Laura Kern (Critic, Curator, managing editor, Film Comment)
Jean-Pierre Bergeron (Actor, Director, Screenwriter)
Samuel Jamier (Co-Director of the New York Asian Film Festival, Programmer at Japan Society)
Jarod Neece (Senior Programmer and Operations Manager, SXSW Film Festival)
Travis Stevens (Producer, CEO and founder of Snowfort Pictures)
FIRST FILM COMPETITION FOR THE NEW FLESH AWARD FOR BEST FIRST FILM
Jury President: Charles de Lauzirika (Filmmaker)
Ramachandra Borcar aka DJ Ram (Composer and Musician)
Manon Dumais (Journalist, Voir, Télé-Québec)
Jason Lapeyre (Filmmaker)
Stéphane du Mesnildot (Author, Journalist, teacher, Les Cahiers du cinema)
ANIMATION COMPETITION FOR THE SATOSHI KON AWARD FOR ACHIEVEMENT IN ANIMATION
Jury President: Patrick Bouchard (Filmmaker)
Luc Chamberland (Filmmaker, writer and teacher)
Keltie Duncan (Programmer and Technical Coordinator, Ottawa International Animation Festival)
INTERNATIONAL SHORT FILM COMPETITION
Jury President: Sten-Kristian Saluveer (Programmer at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival, Director of the Haapsalu Horror and Fantasy Film Festival, representative for the Estonian Film Commission FilmEstonia and Producer)
Garrick Dion (Senior VP of Development, Bold Films)
Frédérick Maheux (Filmmaker)
And now, on to the films!
HORROR IS CHILD’S PLAY – DON MANCINI’S CURSE OF CHUCKY (WORLD PREMIERE)
A rarity among genre franchises, the CHILD’S PLAY series (begun in 1988) has retained the sure-handed guidance of original screenwriter/creator Don Mancini throughout killer doll Chucky’s decades-long reign of horror. Mancini, who will be hosting our “scar-studded” world premiere, graduated to the director’s chair with 2004’s SEED OF CHUCKY, after having co-written or written every entry in the series. His longevity with the project is, of course, matched by the fiendish voiceover work by the incomparable Brad Dourif as Chucky, as well as the enduring input of producer David Kirschner (FRAILTY). For the new CURSE, SEED OF CHUCKY FX master Tony Gardner (ARMY OF DARKNESS, DARKMAN) brings the deadly doll back to life once more through ingenious puppeteering work. CURSE OF CHUCKY returns Chucky to the scarier roots of the series’ initial entries, going more for the jugular than the funnybone. World Premiere. Hosted by Writer / Director Don Mancini and select members of the cast.
GET READY, GET WILD FOR GATCHAMAN (INTERNATIONAL PREMIERE)
At last, after years of rumours and dashed hopes, it’s here – the live-action feature film based on Tatsuo Yoshida’s 1970s anime TV series SCIENCE NINJA TEAM GATCHAMAN… better known on these shores as BATTLE OF THE PLANETS! The brand new, big-screen GATCHAMAN is directed by Toya Sato (the GAMBLING APOCALYPSE KAIJI films) Written by Yusuke Watanabe (20TH CENTURY BOYS, GANTZ), boasts visual effects by Takashi Yamazaki (SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMATO) and features a cast that includes Tori Matsuzaka (a Super Sentai Series veteran), Go Ayano (CROWS ZERO 2, HELTER SKELTER) and Japanese It Girl du jour Ayame Gouriki. Don’t walk, don’t run —fly to Fantasia to catch the Japanese pop-fantasy classic revisited, screening here for the first time anywhere outside Japan!
FANTASIA TEAMS UP WITH JUST FOR LAUGHS TO SHOWCASE OUTDOOR PROJECTIONS OF SILENT COMEDY CLASSICS WITH LIVE MUSICAL ACCOMPANIMENT
For one night only, on the evening of July 22, Montreal cinephiles will have a rare chance to experience a trio of silent-era comedy masterpieces starring Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Laurel & Hardy, projected under the stars on a giant outdoor screen, with live piano accompaniment by the renowned composer Gabriel Thibaudeau. Among his many accomplishments, Thibaudeau has written, conducted and performed silent film score accompaniment at the Cannes Film Festival (in 1998, for Paul Leni’s THE MAN WHO LAUGHS) and the Toronto International Film Festival (in 2005, for Robert Flaherty’s NANOOK OF THE NORTH) and his work appears on numerous DVD and Blu-Ray releases of silent cinema classics. No stranger to the Fantasia universe, Thibaudeau wrote and conducted the orchestral accompaniment for our gala METROPOLIS and PHANTOM OF THE OPERA events. For this new event, which we’re calling LES ROIS DU RIRE (the Kings of Comedy), Thibaudeau will be live-scoring Charlie Chaplin’s THE IMMIGRANT (1919), Buster Keaton’s ONE WEEK (1920) and Leo McCarey’s LIBERTY (1929). This special event is a co-presentation between Fantasia and the Just For Laughs comedy festival, in collaboration with Archambault and the Cinémathèque québécoise. Screenings will take place on JFL’s Videotron Stage in the Quartier de Spectacles in downtown Montreal.
DOCUMENTARIES FROM THE EDGE RETURNS
Fantasia’s popular doc section is back. Along with the previously announced World Premiere of Richard Stanley’s extraordinary L’AUTRE MONDE (The Otherworld), audiences can look forward to:
I AM DIVINE (USA) Dir: Jeffrey Schwartz
A rollicking and touching documentary tribute to Harris Glen Milstead, more famously known as Divine, the 300-pound transvestite performance artist who found a lifelong collaborator in filmmaker friend John Waters, the two transforming underground cinema with boundary-pushing “trash” works. A glorious celebration of an extraordinary outsider story from the director of SPINE TINGLER: THE WILLIAM CASTLE STORY. Official Selection: SXSW, Sheffield Doc/Fest 2013. Quebec Premiere.
THE KILLING OF AMERICA (USA) Dir: Sheldon Renan
A special retro screening of Sheldon Renan and Leonard Schrader’s transgressive powerhouse documentary about the darker side of life in the late ‘70s USA. This screening is playing as part of a special book launch event for Snuff movies : Naissance d’une légende urbaine, written by Antonio Dominguez Leiva and Fantasia’s own Simon Laperrière.
MISTAKEN FOR STRANGERS (USA) Dir: Tom Berninger
What happens when a rock star invites his brother to accompany him on tour? Chaos, simply! Opening Film of the Tribeca Film Festival, the hilarious MISTAKEN FOR STRANGERS is a triumph of cinema vérité that captures like no other film the complex ties between siblings. Tom Berninger puts us front row backstage, presenting The National as they truly are. This is nothing less than 2013’s answer to D.A. Pennebaker’s DON’T LOOK BACK. Official Selection: Hot Docs 2013. Quebec Premiere.
REWIND THIS! (USA) Dir: Josh Johnson
A passionate geek doc that not only follows the life and death of the videocassette, but also the amazingly complex backstory of how it became a format for the ages – transforming from after-thought into obsession. Features hilarious interviews with Frank Henenlotter, Jason Eisener, Atom Egoyan, Cassandra Peterson, Charles Band, Don May Jr, Zack Carlson, David Gregory… A joy. Official Selection: SXSW 2013. Canadian Premiere. Hosted by Director Josh Johnson, Producer Carolee Mitchell and Cinematographer / Editor Christopher Palmer.
PLUS two phenomenal documentary shorts: Josh Koury and Myles Kane’s WE WILL LIVE AGAIN (Official Selection: Tribeca Film Festival 2013) and Adam Abouaccar’s MINIACI: DOLBY OF THE IMAGE (winner at the 40th Concordia Film Festival).
On the subject of shorts…
WRAP YOUR RETINAS AROUND OVER 200 SHORTS
Over the course of our three-week run, Fantasia will showcase over 200 short films from around the world, including astonishing new works from Katsuhiro Otomo (AKIRA), Robert Morgan (BOBBY YEAH), Jörg Buttgereit (NEKROMANTIK), Masaaki Yuasa (MIND GAME), Sofia Carrillo (PRITA NOIRE), RKSS (T IS FOR TURBO) and Yeun Sang-ho (THE KING OF PIGS). Seek them out in our assortment of short film showcases – DJ XL5’s DECADENT ZAPPIN’ PARTY, FAR EAST FRAGMENTS, THE OUTER LIMITS OF ANIMATION 2013, SLIPSTREAMS AND ECLECTIC SHEEP and SMALL GAUGE TRAUMA 2013, as well as in front of select features and within the body of Fantasia’s FANTASTIC WEEKEND OF QUEBECOIS SHORTS, the latter a parallel event that celebrates the best of our homegrown talent.
AN ELECTRIFYING WHIRLWIND OF STYLES AND TONES
Behold, the final title announcements of our 2013 festival lineup!
5-25-77 (USA) Dir: Patrick Read Johnson
An autobio coming-of-age tale about an aspiring fantastic film director from smalltown USA who gets one of the first peeks at a little sci-fi project by one George Lucas… Over six years in the making, this is a true labour of love and an absolute gift from the Geek Gods. Starring John Francis Daley, Austin Pendleton, Colleen Camp. Quebec Premiere. Hosted by Writer / Director Patrick Read Johnson.
AFTER SCHOOL MIDNIGHTERS (Japan) Dir: Hitoshi Takekiyo
A school’s morbid monsters of the night are no match for a trio of irrepressible little girls in this charming, distinctive and eye-poppingly weird work of 3D digital animation from Japan. Scientifically proven to spook and amuse! Official Selection: Annecy International Animation Film Festival 2013, Raindance Film Festival, Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival 2012. North American Premiere.
THE APOLOGY KING (Japan) Dir: Nobuo Mizuta
In this vibrant comedy of manners from director Nobuo Mizuta, Sadao Abe (THE GREAT YOKAI WAR) stars as an eccentric motivational speaker running the Tokyo Apology Centre, which advise in the age-old Japanese practice of apologizing known as “dogeza”. Screenwriter Kankuro Kudo (ZEBRAMAN, PING PONG) builds his story as a relentless escalation of cases to be tackled, and it is in their cumulative effect that THE APOLOGY KING succeeds, defying expectations of scale and thrusting the viewer into a complex, absurd and hilarious supra-case in need of more fixing than a simple apology can provide. World Premiere.
BAD FILM (Japan) Dir: Sion Sono
A recently unearthed and completed early Sion Sono (LOVE EXPOSURE, SUICIDE CLUB) work and pieced together from more than 150 hours of footage shot on Hi-8 video in 1995, starring the young director in a lead role, and hundreds of members of Tokyo GAGAGA, the performance art collective he founded in 1993. BAD FILM is not only entirely inaccurate in its title but a shockingly assured early film. This is simply a must for any self-respecting Sonophile, as well as one of this year’s most exciting retro discoveries, for any fan of loud, abrasive and subversive Japanese cinema. Official Selection: Hong Kong International Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
THE BATTERY (USA) Dir: Jeremy Gardner
Exquisitely crafted, this microscopically budgeted buddy movie breathes new life into the once stale zombie subgenre with a smart and contemplative approach to the road movie reminiscent of the pervasive Americana and sun-drenched pastoral atmosphere of Kelly Reichardt’s OLD JOY. WINNER: Audience Award, Dead By Dawn 2013, Silver Scream Award, Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival 2013. Quebec Premiere. Hosted by Director/Writer/Actor Jeremy Gardner and select members of the cast.
BERSERK GOLDEN AGE ARC 2: THE BATTLE FOR DOLDREY (Japan) Dir: Toshiyuki Kubooka
Guts, Griffiths and the Band of the Hawk hack and slash their way to the top of the bloody heap in this spectacular animated work of medieval mayhem that makes GAME OF THRONES seem like a pillow fight. Official Selection: Annecy International Animation Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
BERSERK GOLDEN AGE ARC 3: DESCENT (Japan) Dir: Toshiyuki Kubooka
Leaving the blood-soaked battlefields of medieval Midlands behind, the Band of the Hawk are drawn ever deeper into something far more dire and nightmarish as the manga adaptation draws to an apocalyptic close. North American Premiere.
BLACK OUT (Netherlands) Dir: Arne Toonen
Reformed criminal Jos Vreeswijk wakes up after his bachelor party to a gun, a corpse, and 24 hours to retrieve a Russian mobster’s stolen drugs. A suspenseful Dutch crime comedy reminiscent of early Guy Ritchie and Lasse Spang Olsen. Official Selection: Fantastic Fest 2012. Canadian Premiere.
BOOMERANG FAMILY (South Korea) Dir: Song Hae-sung
Bolstered by an amazing cast, this engaging dramedy laced with Korean trash talk showcases a family that may be at each other’s throats, and leaves disaster in its wake, but holds together through anything. Recently acquired by the excellent Third Window Films in the U.K. Quebec Premiere.
BOUNTY KILLER (USA) Dir: Henry Saine
In the aftermath of apocalyptic Corporate Wars, it’s open season on suits and there are plenty of warriors of the wasteland ready to collect the rewards for their white-collar kills… this action firecracker is mad, to the max! Exploding with charm, violence and laughs BOUNTY KILLER pops with an entertaining comic-book vibe and a hearty love for genre cinema. From the director of THE LAST LOVECRAFT. BOUNTY KILLER is the official Opening Film of Fantasia’s 2013 Action! Section. International Premiere. Hosted by Actors Christian Pitre and Barak Hardley.
THE BURNING BUDDHA MAN (Japan) Dir: Ujicha
Gruesome abductions, a mysterious monk, monstrosities from a realm beyond our grasp… A truly independent oddity, using the forgotten “gekimation” (live-action paper cutout) technique. Weird, wondrous and way out there! North American Premiere.
BUSHIDO MAN (Japan) Dir: Takanori Tsujimoto
Seven master fighters, seven meals to meditate on, seven noble challenges and a whole lotta chop-socky fun in a low-budget, high- octane martial arts delight from the man behind HARD REVENGE MILLY! Official Selection: Yubari Fantastic Film Festival 2013. North American Premiere. Hosted by Writer/Director Takanori Tsujimoto, Actor Mitsuki Koga, Actor/Action Director Kensuke Sonomura and actor Marc Walkow.
A COMPANY MAN (South Korea) Dir: Lim Sang-yoon
Ji Hyeong-do is a model employee — the best hitman at his agency. A muscular action film masterfully directed, done the way only Koreans can. A COMPANY MAN is an auspicious feature directorial debut from Lim Sang-yoon, Canadian Premiere.
THE COMPLEX (Japan) Dir: Hideo Nakata
Surprising and disturbing, THE COMPLEX marks the long-awaited return to the J-horror genre of Hideo Nakata (RINGU, DARK WATER), and he still has the touch when it comes to oppressive atmosphere and disturbing sounds, but the master has matured in both style and thematic substance. Official Selection: International Film Festival Rotterdam 2013, Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival 2013, Udine Far East Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
CONFESSION OF MURDER (South Korea) Dir: Jung Byung-gil
White-knuckle chases, ferocious fights, sharp social critique and black humour abound in this thriller about a battle-scarred cop consumed with busting a killer who’s become a star since publishing his confessions. Among the most outrageously entertaining flicks of the year. Starring Jung Jae-young (GOING BY THE BOOK, CASTAWAY ON THE MOON). WINNER: Thriller Award, Brussels International Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
COTTAGE COUNTRY (Canada) Dir: Peter Wellington
Till death do us part! Todd’s weekend in the great Canadian wilderness with his fiancée is about to become a nightmare of blood-red butchery and black comedy starring Tyler Labine (TUCKER & DALE VS EVIL, MONSTERS UNIVERSITY) and Malin Akerman (WATCHMEN). North American Premiere.
DRUG WAR (Hong Kong) Dir: Johnnie To
The great Johnnie To reunites with screenwriter Wai-Kai Fai to deliver a stylish, edge-of-your-seat crime drama with the kind of perfectly choreographed action sequences that confirm To as a true master of his delectable art. Official Selection: Rotterdam International Film Festival 2013, Seattle International Film Festival 2013. Quebec Premiere.
EVANGELION: 3.0 YOU CAN (NOT) REDO (Japan) Dir: Hideaki Anno
Fourteen years have elapsed since the last film’s events — alliances have shifted and the stakes have raised in Hideaki Anno’s masterful feature-film revision of his challenging and amazing EVANGELION anime series! North American Premiere.
FATEFUL FINDINGS (USA) Dir: Neil Breen
Bill and Ted would agree this is the best movie on Earth and… let’s leave it that way. Showcasing at the Nuit excentrique, Neil ”I AM HERE NOW….” Breen’s new film is the next sensation in cult cinema. To quote Alain Resnais, “vous n’avez encore rien vu!” Official Selection: Seattle International Film Festival 2013. International Premiere.
FRANKENSTEIN’S ARMY (Netherlands) Dir: Richard Raaphorst
Soviet soldiers in enemy territory discover the grandson of Doctor Frankenstein carrying on the family tradition, raising an army of undead machine-men — for the Nazis! Features an eccentric performance by the great Karel Roden and some of the coolest, craziest monsters you’ve seen in years. Official Selection: Rotterdam International Film Festival 2013, Tribeca Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
THE GANGSTER (Thailand) Dir: Kongkiat Khomsiri
Humane melodrama, brutal street violence, intricate criminal politics and greasy-haired rock ’n’ roll hoodlum cool collide in this immersive evocation of the Thai gangster scene at a dangerous, dynamic time in history. Official Selection: Udine Far East Film Festival 2013, New York Asian Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
THE GARDEN OF WORDS (Japan) Dir: Makoto Shinkai
A series of meetings in the park are the thread of this anime tale of something like love, both deep and forever distant… A turn to realism from Makoto Shinkai (CHILDREN WHO CHASE LOST VOICES FROM DEEP BELOW), to many eyes the heir to Miyazaki’s throne. Canadian Premiere.
GO DOWN DEATH (USA) Dir: Aaron Schimberg
The essence of creative madness, the experimental 16mm Black & White GO DOWN DEATH is an impossible symphony of the macabre evocative of early Guy Maddin and David Lynch that like a Tom Waits song will bewitch your senses. Official Closing Film of this year’s Camera Lucida section. International Premiere. Hosted by Director Aaron Schimberg.
LES GOUFFRES (France) Dir: Antoine Barraud
Fantasia proudly invites you to plunge into the impossible world of Antoine Barraud, one of the most innovative directors to come out of France since Marina De Van gave us the shocking DANS MA PEAU in 2002. A master at manipulating cinematic codes of horror and the supernatural, he is hands down the key revelation of this year’s Camera Lucida section. North American Premiere.
THE GRAND HEIST (South Korea) Dir: Kim Joo-ho
This Korean period-piece spin on the OCEAN’S ELEVEN formula of the elaborate, ensemble-cast crime caper flick boasts a lively pace, quick wit and clever comedy, effective drama and exciting thrills (and a dash of sweet romance)! WINNER: Best Film, Orient Express Competition, Fantasporto International Fantastic Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
THE GREAT PASSAGE (Japan) Dir: Yuya Ishii
The director of SAWAKO DECIDES (winner, Best Film, Fantasia 2010) and MITSUKO DELIVERS returns with another sensitive character study of an introverted young man throwing himself into editing an ambitious dictionary. Subtly epic in its manner and understatedly funny in its scripting. Official Selection: Hong Kong International Film Festival 2013, Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
HATCHET III (USA) Dir: BJ McDonnell
Showing off-site as a special Fantasia co-presentation with Raven Banner and Cineplex’s fantastic Sinister Cinema screening series. Hosted by Actor / Stuntman Kane Hodder.
HELL BABY (USA) Dirs: Robert Ben Garant, Thomas Lennon
Rob Corddry, Leslie Bibb and Keegan Michael Key star in the Sundance comedy/horror hit about an expectant couple who move into a haunted fixer-upper in New Orleans. Canadian Premiere.
HELTER SKELTER (Japan) Dir: Mika Ninagawa
LiLiCo is on the cover of every magazine, the object of lust and idolatry for all that enter her orbit. But perfect beauty is nothing more than a lovely nightmare. An aggressively effective, deceptively candy-coloured portrait of sex and power, where superstar Erika Sawajiri delivers a spectacular performance. Official Selection: BFI London 2012, New York Asian Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
HK/FORBIDDEN SUPER HERO (Japan) Dir: Yuichi Fukuda
Disguised by a pair of panties, the Masked Pervert is the world’s first sex-fiend superhero! Forget Captain America, check out this delirious pastiche loaded with lowbrow laughs. Pervert power for the win! Official Selection: Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival 2013, New York Asian Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
HORROR STORIES (South Korea) Dirs: Jung Bum-shik, Lim Dae-woong, Hong Ji-young, Kim Gok, Kim Sun, Min Kyu-dong
This tremendously entertaining omnibus horror film serves as a showcase of six up-and-coming South Korean horror directors, including Kim Gok and Kim Sun (WHITE: MELODY OF THE CURSE), assembling five terrifying, varied short tales into a jam-packed thrill ride. Official Selection: Sitges 2012, Hong Kong International Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
LES KAÏRA (France) Dir: Franck Gastambide
Whaddaya do when you lust for glory yet haven’t a cent to your name? You go into porn! If you’re after one of the best French comedies in ages, LES KAÏRA is for you. The outrageous film adaptation of “Kaïra Shopping”, Canal+’s first web series, LES KAIRA also marks the feature-film debut of series creator Franck Gastambide. North American Premiere.
KEY OF LIFE (Japan) Dir: Kenji Uchida
A failed actor usurps the identity of a hired killer who has been struck by amnesia. Great idea! This little gem of comedy carried by deadpan hilarious humour, sharp dialogue and stunning plot twists has charmed crowds everywhere it’s played. WINNER: Best Screenplay Award, Shanghai International Film Festival 2012, Official Selection: Toronto International Film Festival 2012, Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival 2013. Quebec Premiere.
THE LADY ASSASSIN (Vietnam) Dir: Quang Dzung Nguyen
An isolated tavern is the lair of a band of beautiful killers… An impressive piece of historical fantasy that overflows with intrigue and fight scenes standing proudly alongside those of Vietnam’s Asian neighbors. The high production values, amazing fights, over-the-top characters and humour of this entertaining piece of celluloid recall the golden years of Hong Kong cinema. International Premiere.
THE LAST TYCOON (Hong Kong) Dir: Wong Jing
Director Wong Jing (GOD OF GAMBLERS, LAST HERO IN CHINA) reunites with the great Chow Yun-Fat for a grand Chinese gangster saga, paying tribute to the crime epics of Coppola and Leone, and the stylistic flourishes of Johnnie To and John Woo. Winner: Best Art Direction, Best Original Film Song, Hong Kong Film Awards 2013. Canadian Premiere.
LESSON OF THE EVIL (Japan) Dir: Takashi Miike
Takashi Miike, who also opens this year’s festival with the North American Premiere of the previously-announced SHIELD OF STRAW, makes a powerful return to exploitation cinema with what may well be the single most shocking film of his career. In this horrific thriller threaded with black humour, a model teacher loved by all is in fact a psychopath planning the mass slaughter of his students. Official Selection: Rome Film Festival 2012, International Film Festival Rotterdam 2013. Canadian Premiere.
LOVE ETERNAL (Ireland) Dir: Brendan Muldowney
A taciturn man accompanies a series of women as they take their own lives. Despite its macabre premise, this important discovery is an unconventional ode to life that will reach into your heart. Featuring extraordinary performances by Robert de Hoog (TRICKED) and Pollyanna McIntosh (THE WOMAN). International Premiere. Hosted by Actress Pollyanna McIntosh.
THE MACHINE (UK) Dir: Caradog James
In the near future, a scientist develops cybernetic technology that can fuse human and machine. Aesthetically impeccable, smartly directed and straight up cool, THE MACHINE is a superb fable, pro-science and antiwar, starring Toby Stephens (SEVERANCE) and THE PACT’s Caity Lotz. Official Selection: Tribeca Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere. Hosted by Writer / Director Caradog James.
NUMBER 10 BLUE S / GOODBYE SAIGON (Japan/Vietnam) Dir: Norio Osada
One of the most exciting retro discoveries in years, this stunning insider’s look at the Vietnam War by Kinji Fukasaku collaborator Norio Osada (best known as the screenwriter of LADY SNOWBLOOD) flows with the madcap energy unique to 1970s counter-culture/exploitation cinema. Official Selection: International Film Festival Rotterdam 2013. North American Premiere.
RAZE (USA) Dir: Josh Waller
More than the usual women-in-prison film, the brutal, violent, Zoë Bell (DEATH PROOF) starring RAZE hits its mark like a roundhouse to the face, a refreshing, relentless addition to a genre too long associated with gratuitous sex and girls taking showers. A tough-as-nails entry in this year’s Action! Section, RAZE, also stars Rachel Nichols and Sherilyn Fenn. Official Selection: Tribeca Film Festival 2013. International Premiere. Hosted by Director Josh Waller and Actress Zoë Bell.
RITUAL: A PSYCHOMAGIC STORY (Italy) Dir: Giulia Brazzale, luca Immesi
Directly inspired by the Psychomagic philosophy of Alejandro Jodorowsky, RITUAL is a dive into a wild universe where the energy of sadomasochism crosses paths with hallucinated beliefs from an exotic folklore. Its dark humour and violence also situates itself in the vein of Almodovar’s early work. Official selection, CPH PIX 2013. North American Premiere.
THE ROOFTOP (Taiwan) Dir: Jay Chou
An all-singing, all-dancing, musical martial arts movie with technicoloured production numbers and massive kung fu fight scenes. Put on your goggles, folks. This one’s an eyeball exploder! Official Selection: New York Asian Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
RUROUNI KENSHIN (Japan) Dir: Keishi Otomo
In Meiji-era Japan, a former killer now wanders the countryside, his backward-bladed sword a symbol of his devotion to justice. It’s peace he seeks – but strife and treachery that find him! Fans of slick, slice-’em-up samurai cinema won’t want to miss this! Official Selection: Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival 2012 Quebec Premiere.
SAMURAI COP (USA) Dir: Amir Shervan
Idiotic dialogue! Inept editing! A video-arcade soundtrack! Far too frequent appearances of black bikini briefs and numerous bungled bedroom scenes! The 1989 “classic” SAMURAI COP is so unbearably bad it’s brilliant! New HD master!
SEE YOU TOMORROW, EVERYONE (Japan) Dir: Yoshihiro Nakamura
Following a traumatic event, Satoru refuses to leave the urban island Furoku. A brilliant dissection of modern Japan, this insightful and exceptional film stars the formidable Gaku Hamada (FISH STORY). From the inimitable director of FISH STORY, GOLDEN SLUMBER, A BOY AND HIS SAMURAI. Official Selection: Udine Far East Film Festival 2013. North American Premiere.
SON OF SARDAAR (India) Dir: Ashwani Dhir
Tighten your turban, the amazing Ajay Devgan (SINGHAM) is back in a colourful, madcap situation comedy that delights its public with a ridiculous accumulation of gags, over-the-top action and stunts – and of course breathtaking Bollywood musical numbers!
TALES FROM THE DARK (Hong Kong) Dirs: Simon Yam, Fruit Chan, Lee Chi-Ngai
The biggest, most star-studded horror omnibus Hong Kong audiences have ever seen comes to town, serving a triple-barreled blast of pure old-school entertainment – three sinister shorts, directed by the returning Fruit Chan (DUMPLINGS), Lee Chi-Ngai (VENGEANCE IS MINE) and, in a rare directorial turn, none other than celebrated actor Simon Yam. Official Selection: New York Asian Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
THERMAE ROMAE (Japan) Dir: Hideki Takeuchi
A public-bathhouse builder in Rome of 128 A.D. tumbles through time to modern Japan, land of such marvels as toilet paper, Jacuzzis and of course electronic bidets! A wonderfully offbeat Japanese historical fantasy comedy with Hiroshi Abe (SURVIVE STYLE 5+, CHOCOLATE). Winner, Outstanding Performance by an Leading Actor, Japan Academy Awards 2013. Quebec Premiere.
THE TIGER MASK (Japan) Dir: Ken Ochiai
Revamping the orphan who becomes a wrestler to fight villains – an icon of anime, manga and live wrestling – Shochiku has initiated a new Japanese superhero franchise with THE TIGER MASK. Be sure to get a ringside seat for its dynamic debut, screening here for the first time on the continent. North American Premiere. Hosted by Co-Writer/Director Ken Ochiai.
ULTRAMAN ZERO: THE REVENGE OF BELIAL (Japan) Dir: Yuichi Abe
Nebula M78, the Land of Light, homeworld of the Ultramen, is attacked by Belial’s robotic weapons… celebrate the 50th anniversary of Tsuburaya Productions with this all-action sci-fi extravaganza. North American Premiere.
VEGETARIAN CANNIBAL (Croatia) Dir: Branko Schmidt
The story of a corrupt gynecologist’s exploits within a toxic medical system, VEGETARIAN CANNIBAL is a tough, transgressive, black-beyond-black gaze into the heart of amorality and an unforgiving rage against the worst kind of institutionalized corruption and sleaze, one that by its very nature is inescapable to its victims. Winner of awards for Best Director, Best Actor and Best Cinematography at the 2012 PulaFilm Festival and Best Actor at Fantastic Fest 2012. Canadian Premiere.
VESSEL (Australia) Dir: Adam Ciancio
Is Ash a drug addict, mentally ill… or one of those rare humans with the gift (or curse?) of interdimensional communication? A remarkably sure-footed debut and a gem of indie filmmaking, VESSEL uses an intricately structured sci-fi concept to explore the complex nature of basic emotions and the inexplicable process of human connection. Official Selection: Sci-Fi London 2013 North American Premiere.
V/H/S/2 (USA/Canada/Indonesia) Dirs: Simon Barrett, Adam Wingard, Eduardo Sanchez, Gregg Hale, Timo Tjahjanto, Gareth Huw Evans, Jason Eisener
Truly a film that needs no introduction, but for those living completely under rocks, V/H/S/2 is a throttling, intense and imaginative anthology horror film featuring subjectively-shot segments from the makers of THE RAID, HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN, BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, MACABRE and YOU’RE NEXT. Official Selection: Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Karlovy Vary 2013. Canadian Premiere.
WHEN A WOLF FALLS IN LOVE WITH A SHEEP (Taiwan) Dir: Hou Chi-Jan
A quirky yet entirely convincing story of two incongruous personalities gravitating to each other to soothe their wounded hearts. The comedy is pitch-perfect in its gentle yet revealing tone, while inventive camera work, animation and an eye for detail add zest to a solid story. Official Selection: Seattle International Film Festival 2013, New York Asian Film Festival 2013, Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival 2013. Canadian Premiere.
ZERO CHARISMA (USA) Dirs: Katie Graham and Andrew Matthews
Scott, a tried-and-true nerd, must re-examine his place in “nerd- dom” when threatened at his D&D table by successful hipster Miles. Comparable only to FREAKS AND GEEKS as both endearing and heartbreaking, ZERO CHARISMA is a stunning nerd dramedy for the ages. Truly an amazing film. Official Selection: SXSW 2013 International Premiere. Hosted by Directors Katie Graham and Andrew Matthews.
ZOMBIE HUNTER (USA) Dir: K. King
The title is all you need to know about this outlandish apocalyptic rollercoaster starring MACHETE’s Danny Trejo as a ghoul-smashing priest hacking his way to heaven. Bounty of pure B-movie entertainment, we promise hot chicks, intense action and exploding heads aplenty. World Premiere.
Got news? Click here to submit it!
Have a fest in the comments section below!