Halloween is nearly upon us, horrorphiles dark hearts are ready to feast on horror delights.Arrow Video FrightFest have been feeding those hearts for Twenty Bloody Years. They return once more next month with a fear-packed journey through Halloween traditions, religious deviance, unstoppable maniacs, warped fairy tales, terrifying board games and the very rules of horror themselves.
The popular Halloween all-day event returns to the Cineworld Leicester Square on Saturday 2 November and the 12-hour monstrous marathon embraces four UK premieres, one European and one International premiere.
The day kicks off with the European Premiere of Josh Hasty’s Candy Corn. With an impressive all-star genre cast (including Tony Todd, who exec-produces), an innovative iconic killer and cool score, say hello to a new twist on a Halloween tradition
This is followed by a 80s throwback horror comedy, We Summon The Darkness. From Marc Meyers, director of My Friend Dahmer, this UK premiere delivers gore and guffaws with gleefully twisted abandon.
Next up is the International premiere of Uncanny Annie, directed by Paul Davis, who gave us the fabulous documentary Beware The Moon: Remembering ‘American Werewolf In London’ This dice-throwing game of death and survival kicks off the second season of Hulu’s Blumhouse-produced series Into The Dark and Paul will be introducing the film.
Then there is the UK Premiere of Swallow, a warped fairy tale, posing provocative questions about the expectations imposed on women and the psychologically damaging effects of patriarchal culture. Anchored by Haley Bennett’s knockout performance, this bold and atmospheric film marks the feature directorial debut of Carlo Mirabella-Davis.
The 8.30pm film is the UK premiere of Trick, from Patrick Lussier, director of Drive Angry and the My Bloody Valentine remake. This surprising slasher delivers graphic shock after shock.
The finale presentation is Scare Package which introduces us to the next generation of horror directors, Each of the eight talented filmmakers has selected a different horror sub-genre, taking aim at the tropes and overused clichés we find all too often in horror films.
Plus, we’ll be showing The Haunted Swordsman, the latest in acclaimed puppeteer Kevin McTurk’s Spirit Cabinet series. Corin Hardy, who backed the hugely successful Kickstarter campaign, will be joining us to introduce the acclaimed short.
Alan Jones, FrightFest co-director, said today: “Get your knives out, your chainsaws revved up and your machetes raised as FrightFest, the UK’s biggest and best genre event returns to the Cineworld Leicester Square on Saturday November 2 for a morning of mayhem, an afternoon of anguish and an evening of evil in a day of the dead extravaganza. Happy Halloween everyone!”
11.00 CANDY CORN (European Premiere)
Director: Josh Hasty. With: Courtney Gains, PJ Soles, Tony Todd, Sky Elobar. USA 2019. 85 mins.
Synopsis: It’s Halloween in Grove Hill, Ohio. A traveling carnival arrives for the weekend and local outcast, Jacob Atkins, is hired as one of the freaks in the main attraction, ‘Dr. Death’s Side Show Spook House Spectacular’. But the local bullies are planning their annual public hazing of Jacob, only this year things go too far, a monster hungry for blood is created by one of the carnies … and revenge never tasted so sweet.
12:45 WE SUMMON THE DARKNESS (UK Premiere)
Director: Marc Meyers. With: Alexandra Daddario, Logan Miller, Keean Johnson, Johnny Knoxville. USA 2019. 87 mins
Synopsis: Be careful what you pray for! It’s 1988 and people are terrorised by a nationwide rash of apparently satanic murders, which appear to be connected to kids who go to heavy metal concerts. Three girls meet three guys at one such gig and go back to Alexis’ family’s country house for a debauched after-party. There the boys learn to their horror that the girls are not the enthusiastic rock fans they seem to be, but something much more terrifying.
PLUS….THE HAUNTED SWORDSMAN (UK Premiere)
Director: Kevin McTurk. With: Jason Scott Lee, James Hong. USA 2019. 16 mins.
Synopsis: Kevin McTurk’s handcrafted epic puppet film, follows a Ronin samurai (Jason Scott Lee) on a supernatural quest for vengeance with only a severed head (James Hong) as his guide.
15:15 UNCANNY ANNIE (International Premiere)
Director: Paul Davis. With: Georgie Flores, Adelaide Kane, Paige McGhee, Jacques Colimon, Dylan Arnold, and Evan Bittencourt. USA 2019. 80 mins
Synopsis: On Halloween night, a group of college students get trapped in a mysterious board game that brings their darkest secrets and fears to life, where they must play to escape…and win to survive.
18:15 SWALLOW (UK Premiere)
Director: Carlo Mirabella-Davis. With: Haley Bennett, Austin Stowell, Denis O’Hare. USA 2019. 94 mins.
Synopsis: Hunter is a newly pregnant woman whose idyllic existence takes an alarming turn when she develops a compulsion to eat dangerous objects. As her husband and his family tighten their control over her life, she is forced to confront the dark secret behind her uncontrollable obsession.
20:30 TRICK (UK Premiere)
Director: Patrick Lussier. With: Omar Epps, Kristina Reyes, Ellen Adair, Tom Atkins. USA 2019. 97 mins.
Synopsis: Halloween night in Benton, New Jersey, 2015, and the student they call Trick suddenly freaks out and causes a bloody massacre. Injured by his friend Cheryl, Trick is taken to hospital but miraculously escapes…. and every October 31st returns to cause further murderous mayhem. Detective Mike Denver promises to bring the seemingly unstoppable killer to justice – a vow that begins to border on obsession as he becomes convinced they are dealing with a supernatural entity.
22:45 SCARE PACKAGE (UK Premiere)
Directors: Courtney Andujar, Hillary Andujar , Anthony Cousins, Mali Elfman, Emily Hagins, Aaron B. Koontz, Chris McInroy, Noah Segan, Ryan Spindell, Baron Vaughn. With: Gabrielle Maiden, Baron Vaughn, Noah Segan, Tristan Riggs. USA 2019. 103 mins.
Synopsis: Chad Buckley is a lonely horror aficionado spending his days at his struggling video store, where he argues with his only regular customer, Sam. When Hawn, an unsuspecting applicant, shows up, Chad teaches him about the Rules of Horror, much to Sam’s chagrin, illustrated by different hilarious horror shorts, each one geared at cleverly subverting a unique set of terror tropes. As Hawn learns the ropes, he suspects Chad of something sinister, while he too may have a secret of his own.
Arrow Video FrightFest Halloween All Day Event will take place on Saturday 2nd November.
For full programme details: http://www.frightfest.co.uk/
Day passes (£47) and single tickets (£14.50) go on sale at noon on Saturday 5th October.
To book: http://www.frightfest.co.uk/tickets.html (Online booking only)