My love for the work of Alexandre Aja began with 2003’s High Tension. The film’s gravity drew me to watch it over and over again, studying each frame and playing its music throughout the day as if it were the soundtrack to my life. But then I discovered other planets Alexandre created – other films with their own gravity – Horns, The Hills Have Eyes, Mirrors and Piranha 3D.
My prayers for unique horrors were constantly being answered. I started to believe that Aja was my guardian angel – adding wood to the fire I already had for horror. Here existed a filmmaker unafraid of challenging himself and the viewer. Therefore, I am inclined to watch everything he creates.
At this year’s Fantasia Film Festival, Alexandre Aja will present Campfire Creepers: Midnight March and Campfire Creepers: The Skull of Sam from Thursday, July 19, to Saturday, July 21.
“When the kids at Camp Coyote are forced on a brutal midnight march by their sadistic counselors, one boy reaches his breaking point. He turns the tables on the bullies, revealing a surprising secret about himself in the process. Master of Horror Alexandre Aja invites viewers on a thrilling ride that will leave them gasping.”
This short, Midnight March, is one that I’ve been looking forward to because of the artistic combination of Alexandre Aja and Robert Englund. Aja is known to invoke tension from his place behind the camera. Pair his direction with Englund, one of the most iconic actors in the history of cinema; and you have the ingredients for what could be a dark and delicious treat. Honestly, I thought of this combination the first time I saw High Tension, but I never elaborated on what could come from it. Fortunately, I don’t have to now.
“French horror auteur Alexandre Aja directs this creepy tale of a couple who encounter a vicious stranger in the woods, one who has plans to add them to his rather unique collection. Injecting humor into this horrific scenario, the experience invites audiences to laugh between the screams.”
This short, The Skull of Sam, had me hooked once I saw Alexandre Aja’s name and the “vicious stranger in the woods” phrase. I immediately remembered watching High Tension and The Hills Have Eyes, and I hope to once again experience the unhealthy excitement I had from my first viewing of those films. Furthermore, the mention of a stranger having a “unique collection” made me wonder what Aja considered “unique,” aside from the universes he has already brought to film. My imagination goes to inappropriate places that are probably unacceptable for a normal human. So I’ll keep those thoughts to myself and let Aja do the imagining for me this time.
I look forward to experiencing Campfire Creepers from a true Master of Horror. Additionally, these shorts will be presented in the Fantasia 360º VR experience, meaning that life can’t get any better. This series is giving me major Are Your Afraid of the Dark? vibes!
If you are at Fantasia Film Festival, feel free to find me and enjoy the movies with me. If we don’t meet there, I’m sure we will have a lot to discuss after the showings.