Saturday, April 30, 2022

Phantom Summer (2022) Fantaspoa 2022

While they are trying to locate a missing friend two friends stumble upon a an opera that was supposedly written in blood and will bring about the end of the world if performed.

Mannered horror fantasy is going to work for some people and not for others. Put me in the second group because the films tone never worked for me. While there is something to the story of the lost friend and potentially demonic work the film seems more interested in things other than generating suspense and terror. I kept waiting for it generate something so that it would finally  connect to me but it never did.

Its a miss with a plot line that I’d like to see redone by a different director.

This film screened as part of Fantaspoa 2022. For more information on the festival, please visit

Once Upon a TIme in Calcutta (2021) NDNF 2022 4/30

Epic drama this is a tale of the city and those that crisscross through the life of a woman named Ela.  Her daughter recently has passed away and she is left drifting. She lives with her husband but live in separate rooms. She needs money but can't sell the theater she was left by her father because her step brother haunts it. She turns to working for her ex-boss a schemer running scams. She also tries to connect with a lost love.

This is a seemingly simple film that grows deeper as it goes on. The more we learn, the farther in we get the more the film expands into a something greater than we had first thought. This is not about just the characters, or humanity but the city and the cycle of life. We are on a wheel of change that everyone and everything must contend- whether they want to or not.

I love this film a great deal. This is one of the few times where I love the use of ONCE UPON A TIME... in the title. I love it because it infers the scale- both epic and small scale. I love how we are seeing a tale that is being pulled out of a city.

This is one of my favorite films from New Directors. It's a film that caught me unaware and delighted me, even as it broke my heart in a million pieces.

What I also loved is this is one of times where I have to thank the programmers of the NDNF series. This film ties in perfectly with other films such as WHITE BUILDINGM, CITY AND THE CITY, and others to form a mini sidebar.

Highly recommended

Friday, April 29, 2022

Children of the Mist (2022) NDNF 2022

If you ever wondered if the director of a documentary will put their camera down and intervene then CHILDREN OF THE MIST will answer that question since director Ha Le Diem steps up and stops a kidnapping when her subject Di is made the target of kidnapping.  She is being kidnapped so that despite being only 13 she is to be married off to a local boy who fancies her. This despite the fact the legal age of marriage in Vietnam is 20. It seems that in remote areas of the country, the kidnapping of young brides is still practiced.

CHILDREN OF THE MIST is the story of DI. She is a young girl on the verge of womanhood, who sees a future outside of the village. She is curious enough to want to expand her mind and continue her education as far as she can. However she is also at the age when the young men around her are contemplating taking her for a bride. It is a fate she is not looking forward to since she sees what the practice has done to her older (but not my much) sister who already has two kids. Over the course of the film we watch the rhythms of the village and watch as the old ways refuse to die.

I was riveted. I was shocked.

This film was absolutely not what I was expecting with the result that the film became something deeply moving. I sat in my seat watching events unfolding, uncertain at times if I was really seeing what I was seeing, an totally shocked as things played out. I mean there is a weird disconnect between the violent removal of the young woman and the matter of fact way it was carried out.

You need to see this.

One of the must sees for New Directors New Films

Subject (2022) Fantaspoa 2022

My hands are tied in talking about this film. While I could really discuss it and its wonders I would spoil the twists and turns that lie at the end of the film. While I know pretty much everyone who reviews the film will spoil it, I can’t do so. I had a blast watching the plot twist and having my eyes go wide and as the turns made me talk to the screen.

The plot of the film has a writer going to an isolated house in an isolated village to work on his next book. Not long after he gets there weird things begin happening and turns begin appearing. Something is happening in the house, in the village and in the story he is writing.

The best thing I can say is this the kind of thing I could imagine Neil Gaiman would turn into a best selling novel. Its not so much a horror film but a fantasy film and a meditation on creation. While this may not thrill those at Fantaspoa who are looking for hardcore horror, those who are looking for a clever respite from the insanity are going to be absolutely delighted.

This film screened as part of Fantaspoa 2022. For more information on the festival, please visit

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Don’t let anyone tell you anything about Bernie Langille Wants To Know What Happened to Bernie Langille (2022) Hot Docs 2022

This film is a trip. It’s a film that reminds me why I love a well told story.

Bernie Langille is named after his grandfather. His namesake died 15 years before he was born.  One day he went to lay a poppy on his grandfather’s grave. The trouble was that his grandfather’s grave wasn’t where he thought it should be. This sends Bernie on a quest to untangle what happened to grandfather all those years ago.

This is a hell of a story. It’s a story shrouded in in shifting memory and the cover stories that you tell children. It’s a story that doesn’t go where you think and as a result becomes one of those great films where you lean in to. You want to know how this is going to play out. I was hooked from the start and just hung up on two people who called me during the screening.

I want to much to tell you about the film, but I don’t want to spoil the twists.

I will say that I love how they used dioramas instead of actor recreations. It gives the film a unique look that makes it so much more special.

Highly recommended

Cabane A Sang 2022: The final report: SCI F'HIGH, PORTRAITS OF ODD and PURE HORROR

For the final report on this year's Cabane A Sang here is a report on the final three sections. 

The first section was originally run on Facebook. It was then put on Filmocracy for anyone who was viewing the films there.


The section begins with a trailer for SECTOR S 9. Its a about a future where oxygen is in short supply. It looks good.

The CYBERSHOCK 1999 is a blast.It contains the immortal like "I never hit a woman unless she's a robot.

CARMENTIS is a killer short about a man who is trapped on a the surface of a planet when his mode of transport crashes and severely injures him. He has to get back into the before the weather changes. I've seen this a couple of times at various festivals and it delights me every time.

TRANSFORT- this is a super scifi time travel movie about a Nazi officer sending an expendable prisoner back in time so he can destroy a weapon that could change the the world. It's nifty little what if story.

ARE YOU IN HEAVEN is about a cult in the future and their sending someone to heaven. Its very good.

BLIND FEAR is a tale of a dystopian future where robots and humans co-exist. WHile we have been here before the film remains compelling.

POLVOTRON 500 a surprisingly good tale of a man who visits a robotic call girl.

AREA 51? 52? A vlogger gets lost trying to find where the truth is. I don't dare say more.

CYBORG WARRIOR A short apocalyptic film from Troma. That's all you need.

SURVIVORS Possibly the last thee survivors have to figure out if its safe to take off their protective gear. Its a neat little film.


Okay, I need to come clean, this was the last section I watched and  it was very late at night. The low key nature of them worked against them when compared to the to the other sections. While the films were all good, my feelings were over whelmed by all the other films. Additionally, my notes are minimal so I'm only going to mention the films in a passing. Hopefully I will get to see them again down the road and give them the due they deserve.

PACCO is an odd tale of a weird man interacting with people in an park

SCARE is the life of a mannequin.

MUNE is a about a woman who fixes things.

SOLUTIONS FOR SADNESS is about a woman who gets a package that will allow her to beat the blues. 


A collection of nifty horror films

THEY'RE HERE is a story I want to see expanded. This story of a young girl, her grandmother and a monster needs to fleshed into a feature.

PERFORMANCE ANXIETY- a singer has a special audition and it goes into chilling and unexpected ways. The end had me talking to the screen.

TECKENCHE -  I'm not sure what was going on in this film, but god damn it has some killer images

NO ONE IS COMING a woman and a stalker in a well done variation on a theme.

RELIC Another festival favorite has one of the best monster I've seen in years. Its the story about an awaken beast and refound relic. If this remains only a short it will be a sin, there is a great tale here.

And with that I am done with this year's Cabane A Sang. I still contend that this is one of the great festivals of any year. Not just genre, but any sort of festival. 

Thank you to Frank Apache and the Cabane A Sang staff- I love you all. I can not tell you how much I love that you let me dwell in your madness the last three years.

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

TAKE ME TO THE RIVER NEW ORLEANS hits the Alamo Drafthouse in NYC Friday

 This is a nominally a look at the rich musical history and influence of New Orleans but the truth is this is a hellacious collection of music that is going to get you bopping around the theater or room.  You need to see this in a place with a great sound system so you can move to the music.

I know right now the filmmakers and the promotional people are probably upset that I am not talking about the discussion of the city and its musical history, but the truth is you’re not going to remember that, you’re going to remember the music. I watched the film twice in a row. Once to see the film, the second time to crank up the music and feel good.

I don’t know what else to say other than the film has The Neville Brothers, Dr. John, Irma Thomas, Ledisi, G-Eazy, Snoop Dogg, WIlliam Bell, Galactic, Mannie Fresh, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, George Porter Jr., Christian Scott, Donald Harrison, Big Freeda, Ani DiFranco, PJ Morton of Maroon 5, Rebirth Brass Band, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Soul Rebels, Voice of the Wetlands, The Givers, Dumpstaphunk, Cheeky Blakk, Lost Bayou Ramblers, Big Sam, Terence Higgins, Walter Wolfman Washington, Dee-1, Davell Crawford in it, so whats not to love?

An absolute must see.

Peace By Chocolate (2021)

This true story of a Syrian family who emigrates from their home to a small town in Canada where they set up a chocolate factory is a charmer.

Made with love and care this is a sweet (no pun intended) little drama that works on several different level. First and foremost it’s a great little drama about great people. I love that there really are no bad guys, only people with different points of view and very human ways of seeing the world. The film also has great deal to say about emigration from several points of view. It is a film about trying to find peace through connections on a human level. I was moved.

While the film is probably not going to be on the tip top of your best films of this years Tribeca, it may very well end up on your list of most entertaining. More importantly when all of the serious dramas and urgent documentaries have faded from your mind odds are Peace By Chocolate is going to be the film that you not only remember but revisit.

Cabane A Sang 2022 Report 6 Mixed Meats 5 and 6

Here is word on the final sections of MIXED MEATS


It begins with a trailer for SHE DOGS OF THE SS. Think of it as a modern take on Nazisploitation

OH DEER is one I've encountered before and it follows what happens when a father and his young daughter hit a deer with their car. Its a good really poisoned confection

URINE FOR IT 2 is what happens when a couple of guys who have to go are chased by a serial killer. Its amusing.

DANCE DANCE KILL is an interesting mix of dance and horror as dancers take on a killer bird. Words can not do this film justice. Just see it.

ANNITA & EVERY CHILD DESERVE A FAMILY is what happens when a family looking to adopt get a living doll. Really strange and more than a bit creepy.

PUMPKIN BOY is what happens when vandals smashing pumpkins try it on the wrong pumpkin. This is a delight.

NIGHT OF THE LIVING DICKS is a zombie spoof where people turn into penises. I've seen this a couple of times and I know it has rabid fans but I think it's okay, with the film running out of steam before the end.


The trailer for the killer refrigerator film starts this section. Even the second time around its still a delight

FLICK is a film I have no memory of other than an image of a guy picking his nose and another of him trashing a room.

COMFORT HIM is a wicked story of a crying baby and sleeping father.

DIARRHEA ponders what happens if you are in a bathroom and have to go, but a demon is lurking outside the stall and if you make a noise you die. Both frightening and funny.

BLAST OFF Drinks send a man into space. This is a short sweet diversion.

JUICED is the story of a man and his roommate who uses his juicer as he is trying to get an important project done. It's probably a bit too long, but its still a wicked little tale

A PUFF BEFORE DYING-a puppet PSA film about the dangers of smoking weed and driving. Its funny for all the right reasons

#MEOWTOO - the dangers of werecats and humans hooking up.

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Cabane A Sang's Film contest: The Party Pooper Spectacular


Cabane A Sang’s  Party Pooper Spectacular was an absolute blast. The collection was made fans of the festival who had to follow a few rules:  the budget was limited to $200and it had to be n the  theme of anniversary.  The result was a collection of films that ran the gamut from tasteful to tasteless. From extremely polished to raw and jagged.  All of the films were delightful in their own ways. Actually they were so good as a group that I am hoping that The Cabane A Sang programmers do this again every year from here on in since the films were just so much fun.

The reviews that follow are not in the order they ran rather they are in the order the fest gave them to me.

Le Cambrioleur (The Burglar) :  Concerns a surprise party and I can’t say more, other than to say it doesn’t go right for anyone. Short sweet and to the point. This is one of my most favorite films of the festival. It’s so good I watched it a bunch of times before moving on.

Anniversaire de marde (Shitty Birthday) : Has a gentleman celebrating his dog’s birthday…and it’s not for the faint of heart. It’s a gross  film that is going to absolutely provoke a reaction – probably disgust

Diner de pauvre (poor people dinner) : A rich family argues at a birthday diner, about politics. This is a a wicked satire with a killer denouncement about what the rich are doing to the rest of us.

Tales of the party pooper monster (Winner of the competition) : Kids are mean to the birthday girl and her wish is for the party pooper monster to come save her. An absolute wicked blast as a little girls bad day turns into the best.

Film de marde (Shitty Film) : A movie about Eric (the director) having no inspiration to make a film for the contest, and calling Cabane A Sange festival head Frank Apache about what to do. This is a nice self referential film.

Cooper’s Ball : A man turns into werewolf after eating the balls of his neutered dog and going for thepeople’s balls. This was an amusing turn.

Pigu: A spoof of Gremlins involving anal sex. Not for all tastes but still amusing.

Traumo based crack: A drug dealer has to film someone taking his new product, however they can only take one… Raw gritty and the wrong sort of lived one, this film has an edge most of the others don’t have.  

Ze Crack: Crackheads go to extreme lengths to get high. This is another raw film that walks the edge between being sad and funny.

Psycho porno: I’m going to defer to the words of Fran Apache on this one “you gotta see it to believe it.”

Diaries of Sgt Gene Killer Donnig: Twisted low brow tale of a Vietnam vet having a flashback and needing to go, really badly.  It’s a film that walks the fine line between funny and gross that will make you wonder how they made it so cheaply.

Upurga (2022) Fantaspoa 2022


Reeling from a past tragedy a rafting guide tags along with his sister and her friends when they go into the forest to shoot a video. Picking up a local inspector who warns them never to leave the river to enter the forest, they do just that and things begin to go wrong and primal.

I’ve delayed reviewing UPURGA because I couldn’t figure out what I thought of the film. I wanted to try and see it a second time before I wrote it up. I watched the film the other night  a second time and to be honest I still don’t know what I think of it.

This is a gorgeous looking film. It is a film that feels real. We are in the forest and on the river with the characters. Its one of the very few films I’ve ever seen where I had no sense of there being a crew just out of the frame. This film feels like we are in the middle of nowhere. Frankly this is exactly the sort of film that should be in the running for an Oscar because it’s cinematography is a key component to the story telling process. Sadly films like this get pushed aside for films that have beautiful vistas or compelling images like in Bladerunner 2049.

My uncertainty with the film comes from the narrative. This is a film that echoes several other horror films, and or fairy tales where we are warned not to stray from the path. Madness lurks in the darkness and we should never investigate it. While the film has moments and genuinely generates more than it’s share of creepy fearful moments, I’m not sure it all hangs together. Something seems off, even allowing for the fact that there is a kind of dream logic operating here, something seems off.

In a weird way this film reminded me of a film called YELLOWBRICKROAD about a supposed haunted trail in New England.  When I first saw the film I was overwhelmed by the theatrical experience and wicked sound design, however when I saw the film again I found that the narrative didn’t hold together. It did a few things that seemed to go against its own internal logic, I could see how the director moved things to make the film go how he wanted it to, and not the way the characters and situations were heading. I have that same feeling in regard to UPURGA. Its not really fatal, but I can’t not unseen the hand of the director manipulating things.

Worth a look for what works, but I’m not sure you’ll be satisfied.

This film screened as part of Fantaspoa 2022. For more information on the festival, please visit

FLINT - Who Can You Trust? (2022)

Portrait of what happened in Flint Michigan when the governor decided I would be cheaper to switch the water source for the city from Lake Huron to the (polluted) Flint River. Despite being told they could purify it enough to use, they couldn’t. The water from the tap was an ugly brown, it tasted awful and caused rashes for anyone whole bathed with it.

Belt in boys and girls this is a going to crush you. It’s not so much that they fucked up and started to harm the people of the city who now must use bottled water and baby wipes, rather it’s simply that no one is really doing anything to fix the problem. The water is still unusable and everyone is bitching about the cost, which is getting worse and worse because of the bottled water and wipes.

Honestly there is a lot to take in. My head was spinning. My heart was broken. This situation is so absolutely wrong I don’t have the words. I was brought to my knees.

As moving as the film is the film has one flaw which may work against it for some people which is there is almost too much to take in. The film runs roughly two hours and it fills pretty much every minute with something to enlighten or move you. It’s a minor quibble, but one I mention because when the film was done I had to let it sit with me for the rest of the day while I tried to connect everything up.

Quibble aside, You really need this film.

This is a massively tragedy that potentially heralds similar situations across America and the globe.


Ode to Nothing (2021)

If you want to see a creepy little gem, one that will get under your skin and stay there then see ODE TO NOTHING a dark little tale that is just black.

The film concerns a woman who runs a funeral parlor. Business is so bad she is on the verge of losing everything to loan sharks. When a body comes her way, under less than above board means, her business begins to turn around. She also begins to have an unnatural relationship with the cadaver.

Slow brooding without a lick of blood and gore, yet full of unpleasant feelings, ODE TO NOTHING is a welcome respite for anyone who wants their horror thoughtful yet deeply disturbing. Things happen in due time. A mood is created and tension builds and builds with no jump scare to release it. This is a film that sits with you and makes you feel wrong. Rarely has any horror film ever made me feel so off that I went off to find something else that was light and airy and funny to clear my head. I was disturbed.

A word of warning: This film is more art house than grind house. I say this because a slow and monotonous fifteen minutes pass before events begin to happen. The pacing is deliberate and if you can't go with it you are going to hate the film.  On the other hand if you can go with the slow pace this film will knock your socks off.

Highly recommended for anyone who thinks they can click with its rhythms.

Cabane A Sang 2022 Report 5: Mixed Meats 3 and 4

Once more into the breech dear friends, with another report on the wonderful films playing Cabane A Sang.


 Opening  with a trailer for a film called ZOOMBIES. the film set a high bar with a great ending.

PAINTED is one of my favorite films of the festival. The film concerns a man who tries to contact the lost spirit of his wife by having a demon painted a picture. This is magnificent on every level. Its also genuinely scary and suspenseful. I would love to see this expanded to  into a feature.

GOLDEN RAIN is an amusing tale of a man in a bathroom that has the unfortunate problem of having to follow PAINTED. This would have played better had it been in a different position.

HELL ON COTTON HILL is the story of killer rabbits. Think the rabbits from Monty Python and The Holy Grail. This is a lot of fun.

DECAPITATION is a wicked short about a man who plays a video game.... and that is all I can say.

SMILES I've seen a couple of times before. Its a supremely f-ed up film about a man going to his girlfriends  home for dinner. It might scar you for life.

SANTALAND is a disturbing, twisted animated film that you need to see.


The section begins with a trailer for TERROR TALES about a beauty shop where people see visions of their future.

MATAOLO is a brief tale of a woman who says good bye to a friend is stalked by a strange person. I would be interested to see what comes next.

OVERKILL is a horror spoof sending up conventions of teens in peril from a masked killer. It covers SCREAM territory in a couple minutes and with more laughs.

NEKROFOREST is an experimental film of decaying things in the forest. Its actually quite beautiful

POLTER has a man calling a supernatural help line when a poltergiest takes up residence in his house. Its a great deal of fun

EVERY TIME  WE MEET YOUR WHOLE FUCKING FACE EXPLODES. A correct but way too long  title hides a wonderfully charming romance between and a girl whose face explodes when she is excited. This if a small joy

Monday, April 25, 2022

Black Box (2021 ) Opens Friday

 Give Black Box a few minutes and you’ll be belted in for a rollercoaster ride to the end. This is an old school throw back to the paranoid thrillers of the late 60’s or early 70’s that hooked audiences and changed the way we saw the world. Think Parallax View, The Conversation, or Blow Up, but with a modern sheen.

The plot of the film follows an audio expert who works for the French version of the NTSB doing crash reconstruction. He gets drawn into the case of a passenger crash that killed 300 people. The people who are supposed to be finding out what’s on the voice recorder have gone missing so they turn to him to unlock what exactly was said in the final moments of the flight. It’s not giving anything away to say he finds something hinky and begins to pull at the thread.

While the set up is nothing new, how it plays out is not. We’re in a world where you would think modern devices would make somethings in possible, but the truth is this film opens up all sorts of uncomfortable possibilities. No one and nothing is safe. By the time the film ends I was frightened to do anything.

I really liked this film a great deal. While the straight forward nature of the film is a bit distancing, the cold sheen adds a great deal to everything. By the time we warm to the characters we are truly invested and truly fear for what is going to happen.

I know I am being vague and less then detailed, but this is one of those films that works best the less you know. Actually the best thing I can say it is just see it. Don’t read on it, just see it.

Very recommended

Hatching (2022)


Tinja, teenaged girl, finds an egg in the woods and hatches it- giving birth to a nightmareish doppleganger she names Alli.

This is a disturbing film from Finland that will have you wincing repeatedly as unlesant things happen. Your reaction is not going to be from the gore but from the disturbing nature of the creature as well as the decaying on the inside notion of the perfect family.

And of course this is a grand allegory for growing up and life. Its clear from the minute the perfect mother dispatches a bird that got into the house that something rotten is living in the house. Mom is a crazy and horny for th repair guy. Additionally the creature is very much another facet of Tinja with the whole arc of the creatures life calling into play the notion that Tinja is now growing up. I am going to be very curious how women react to the film and its turns.

I was both delighted and deely disturbed.


Sunday, April 24, 2022

Cabane A Sang Report 4: Mixed Meats 1 and 2

There are six sections of short films playing Cabane A Sang, all with the banner MIXED MEATS. If you want to know why the festival is one of the greatest I've run across all one has to do is look at the films they program. No one else schedules as many shorts good and great shorts. 

God bless Frank Apache and the programmers of Cabane A Sang because every year their short selections renew my faith in cinema. I'm serious, they do. They pick all sorts of films that show the wide variety of films and it makes me realize that there is more than big huge Hollywood crap.

Here are my thoughts on the first two meats:


The section opens with a trailer for a film called GIMME HEAD about a  killer bigfoot who goes around and kills people by tearing off their heads. I want to see the full film.

REAL KILL JOY is the story of a zombie killer who is the object of affection of another woman she speaks with via the radio. It's a great deal of fun.

ROXANNE is a creepy film about a mannequin looking for her hair.

KNIT OF THE DEAD is fun. Its about an older woman who deals with zombie intruders to her house with martial arts and knitting materials.

MELODY OF MADNESS is a grainy black and white trip into a killer's mind.  Some of this is truly disturbing.

MILK AND COOKIES is one of the best Christmas shorts I've seen. Its the story is a young boy who wants to kill Santa. You may think you know where this is going but the truth is, you don't. One of the nest films I've seen in 2022.

SHEIGALA VAMPIRE BUSINESS WOMAN is the story of cosmic beings battling it out for humanity. It's a kind of throwback to the 1970's or 80's fantasy films. My question is where is the next part.

LIKE ME DEADLY is a wicked satire about an influencer and how she handles a home invasion. Its funny and not funny.

BOBBY PINWHEEL THE MOVIE- an evil clown goes to a childrens party. A twisted animated film that is really gross...and a lot of fun.


This opens with a trailer for KILLER REFRIGERATOR 2...which means I will have to chase these films down.

SHC: FREAK ACCIDENT Found footage film of a freak accident. This is a good little film.

Z INVESTIGATION begins with the police walking through a murder site with a confessed killer...then the zombies attack. Nifty little short.

Apologies I have no comment on PISS TEA. Its not that it's bad, more that its a WTF eye poke you need to see.

AXE AND IRON is another zombie apocalypse tale about jealousy and survivors. Its a mix of zombies, romance and comedy.

THE REVEAL is a dire warning why sometimes you should NOT do what your lover asks you to do. (And I can absolutely relate to this film)

SHINY NEW WORLD is another one of the best films of 2022. Its a recruiting video for a company that cleans up after supernatural messes. (Think about cleaning up the cabin in EVIL DEAD). Absolutely brilliant.

KARAOKE NIGHT is the story of what happens when a man tries to pick up a young woman. This is a nifty film that I can't really discuss because of the way the film turns.

Hot Docs 2022

Hot Docs is back!

The annual Canadian festival of documentary goodness is about to hit and we are better for it.  Every year they highlight or premiere a staggeringly wonderful slate of great films. If you can get to the fest go. And if you are in Canada do try to watch some of the virtual films. (And you do have to be in Canada because most of the online options are geolocked)

I will be running reviews of several films. They will run close to their screening time at the festival.

And because Hot Docs runs  great films  from other fests We have covered a number of the films already and you’ll find links to those reviews below.


For more information go here

Cabane A Sang 2022: Report 3

This time out I'm breaking with the one rule of Cabane A Sang which is watch the films in the order that Frank Apache and the programmers set up. The reason that is because they set up the films to play off each other. I messed with the order and went for the features and stand alones which made the experience a bit bumpy.  At the same time most of the films taken their own terms the films are all really good.  

I will be reporting on all the Mixed Meats Collections in the next report

LA PUTA ES CIEGA is a punk rock underground look at the darker side of Mexico City. Its a visceral gut punch where some pieces of this "shot on video" throw back are better than others. If you are punk rock to your core this film is for you- and remember PLAY THIS MOVIE LOUD

KARRRIM HUNSSAN AND THE REVIVAL IF GENRE CINEMA IN CANADA is a seven minute look at Hunsan's work and how it influenced filmmakers in Canada.

NIPPLE WAR 3- a news producer has to mosaic a nipple in a picture and it causes all sorts of problems. Lightweight, but amusing tale seems oddly out of place at the festival. On the other hand the lightness is a nice change of pace.

TAPEHEAD- a VHS junkie goes to extreme lengths to get the tapes he wants - with dark results. Nominally a comedy this turns dark. Think of it as the dark side of the collecting

SUGAR DEAD- a naive young girl signs up for an agency that hooks her up with a sugar daddy...zombies.

SQUISH while playing with his son a father causes something to go squish. Moody black and white photography make this tale of an awkward stiuation work.

WET ONES- love it or hate it WTF film is probably best if you are in an altered state. This wildly overlong film (its two hours and 18 minutes) is a mish mash of live action, puppets and crude animation. Don't ask me what it's about, I'm not certain. I do know that this was the first Cabane A Sang film in three years that I had no idea why it was programmed. This film takes the notion of trash cinema to the extreme. I freely admit that the extreme length worked against it and I wandered out for a while during it.

VOYEUR(S) was only in French so I really can't comment on this film which has something about a hotel owner watching his guests.

ZOMBIES FROM SECTOR 9- no budget zombie film is one of the best I've seen in a while.  While not destined to be hailed as the great zombie film ever SECTOR 9 out scores many other similar films by having its heart in the right place. The story of a down on his luck guy turned zombie hunter may not be new but it is heartfelt and the filmmakers believe in its tale. Best of all the film doesn't make fun of itself but plays things straight. It knows it has no budget and goes for it, never making excuses, just telling the story. Clearly there is love before and behind the camera with the result that we fall into the film and like it.

The DEAD SEXY collection consists of four films dealing with sex and death. SCORPION IN A BED OF ROSES has a serial killer preparing for a meeting with a woman who is giving herself to him. Its a film that works because the execution lifts it up into being something special. USER is a creepy tale of a cam girl and one of fans. GORGONAEAE has a man taking two women home to bed and it going unexpectedly.  Its a trip. 3 GUYS ONE READ BED is another trip as a tryst goes really really wrong.

The COLOR BLIND section is actually two black and white films. The first is a INEVITABLE SILENCE in which a "self help" meditation tape prepares us for the silence and aloneness of death. Even with the beautiful women, or because of it, it is a deeply disturbing look at our eventual end.  The film is paired with the shot on 8mm silent feature LE ACCELERATOR. Its the story of a hitman meditating on death and fighting various people. This is a wonderful one of a kind film that I wish I had seen on a big screen. It  reminds me of my 8mm days, while at the same time it shows the masterful handiwork of director Thomas Eikram who uses the limitations of the form to make something truly special. I want to see what he does next... right after I watch this film again.