Fantasia 2019: When Zena takes over Fantasia International Film Festival

Fantasia Film Festival was intense last year, and I expect nothing less this time around. What also rocked last year was my article about the movies I looked forward to seeing. So, what’s that cliché? If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it? Facts, which is why I decided to write about ten movies I’m looking forward to this year.

This is the 23rd year of Fantasia International Film Festival and it takes place July 11, 2019 – August 1, 2019. More information can be found on their official website.

Let me know which films you’re interested in checking out in the comments!

Ready or Not

A bride’s wedding night takes a sinister turn when her eccentric new in-laws force her to take part in a terrifying game.

Come on. You read the synopsis. Need I say more. NEED I SAY MORE! Next movie.

Ready or Not will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 27th, 2019.

The Deeper You Dig 

In the aftermath of a roadside accident, the line between the living and the dead collapses for a mother, a daughter and a stranger.

The Adams, the family behind making this film, are extraordinary in the film world. They have constantly succeeded in crafting compelling stories with not much money, just love for each other and the filmmaking process. I believe they are just a film or so away from striking gold in the industry. I just want to ensure I am among the first to witness it.

The Deeper You Dig premiered at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 11th, 2019.


Jessica, Beni, Dian, Alex, Erik, and Linda want to increase their popularity through recording their adventures to upload to their social media accounts. They chose to go to an abandoned apartment famous for its awesomeness. Linda manages to persuade Kang Heri, security guard, to enter the apartment. Linda and friends found one apartment unit which is given a police line. Encouraged by curiosity, they break down the door of the apartment unit. When they are researching the room, they find an old parchment, which only Linda could read. After Linda reads the writing on the parchment, suddenly a portal open. Inadvertently Linda and her friends have opened the door to the magical world and anger the portal guardian supernatural creatures.

I was unaware that this was a video game until my brother said that he played and enjoyed the game. When I researched the premise, I was intrigued to discover a movie about a girl who fights demons with the flash from her smartphone. How could I not see this?

Dreadout premiered at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 17th, 2019.

The Father’s Shadow

According to everyone and their grandmother, this brought down the house at last year’s Tokyo International Film Festival. Furthermore, The Hollywood Reporter covered it and hinted at remnants of Victor Erice, famous for traumas like The Spirit of the Beehive, and pieces of zombie flicks like Night of the Living Dead.   

The Father’s Shadow will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 22nd, 2019.

Koko-Di Koko-Da 

As a couple goes on a trip to find their way back to each other, a sideshow artist and his shady entourage emerge from the woods, terrorizing them, luring them deeper into a maelstrom of psychological terror and humiliating slapstick.

I have no idea what I am looking at when I watch the trailer for Koko-Di Koko-Da. For that reason, I want to see the entire film. When a filmmaker is brave enough to give you this trailer, featuring a large guy dancing around holding another unconscious guy in his underwear, a girl uninterestingly filming this spectacle, an older gentleman laughing uncontrollably, and someone scared watching this all from a distant tent; you have no other option but to walk in the theater, plant into a seat, and shut up for the weirdest ride of the night.

Koko-di Koko-da will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 24th, 2019.

Night God

This movie shows how hard it is for me not to follow the crowd sometimes. I kept hearing about one award after another that this received in Russia. Therefore, I can’t miss out. And with a title like Night God, you can’t help but be curious. Lastly, Aldikhan Yerzhanov’s previous film The Gentle Indifference of the World enchanted me to the point that I have become obsessed with his brain.  

Night God will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 26th, 2019.


Two women befriend each other, but one becomes obsessed with the other.

I loved Alex Essoe in Starry Eyes and can’t wait to see her in the upcoming Doctor Sleep. This film should not only hold me over until that arrives, but it is also sure to be a delight. I’ve yearned for a new comedy-horror in 2019, and I’ve heard that director Zach Gayne is the guy who delivers.

Homewrecker will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 26th, 2019.


I saw Suburban Gothic back in 2015 and hailed it as a fun movie. To discover that Tone-Deaf also comes from director Richard Bates Jr. let me know that I couldn’t miss this at Fantasia. He also returns with editor Yvonne Valdez, whom I discovered when reviewing The People Under the Stairs.

Tone-Deaf will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 26th, 2019.


In this genre-bending psychological sci-fi thriller, a bold girl discovers a bizarre, threatening, and mysterious new world beyond her front door after she escapes her father’s protective and paranoid control.

Amanda Crew is also in the movie Tone-Deaf (above). I figured she has a knack for picking good films, especially one in which she stars alongside Emile Hirsch. His acting penetrates, even from the trailer. But what entices deeper is the mystery behind the chaos in this film. 

Freaks will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 28th, 2019.

Riot Girls

In an alternate 1995, a mysterious disease has wiped out all of the adults. In this new age, two gangs are pitted against each other in a brutal war for territory, resources and survival.

I’ve followed Jovanka Vuckovic’s career for years. From Editor-in-Chief at Rue Morgue to a sought-after filmmaker, Vuckovic is an inspiration to many women (and men) in the horror genre. Paired together with Hollywood writer Katherine Collins, Vuckovic is bound to impress with Riot Girls.

Riot Girls will premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival on July 28th, 2019.

These are several other films I like forward to seeing at this year’s Fantasia; but unfortunately, I won’t have time to see them all. I’ve already vowed not to repeat my Red Bull diet from last year. No sleep made for an exhausted Zena, who snored for hours in a poor old woman’s ear on the flight home. Because of that, I promise to behave this year. 😈



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