Can you hear them scream? You will next month when Arrow Video FrightFest returns to Leicester Square London. Today the dark heart of cinema goes full scream as they reveal the second wave of films we can look forward to at FrightFest.
A promise of a summer collection of provocative, edgy and transgressive entertainment to die for. There are fourteen World and ten European / International premieres amongst the thirty-four films on offer all making hugely anticipated Discovery Screen and First Blood titles.
Eleven countries are represented, with titles ranging from Canadian entries like Amelia Moses’ simmering LGBQT+ werewolf movie Bloodthirsty and sinister isolation thriller Motherly to Francesco Erba’s As In Heaven, So On Earth, a stunning Italian blend of live action and Gothic puppet animation. Péter Bergendy’s sumptuous epic Hungarian ghost story Post Mortem, Frida Kempff’s breakout Sundance sensation Swedish entry Knocking. Stef Lernus directorial debut the wildly inventive genre hit is the hallucinogenic Hotel Poseidon from Belgium. And from the UK, The world premiere of Marcus Harben’s Followers, taking us into the cut-throat world of social media influencers is given the terror treatment.
FrightFest luminary grace Graham Skipper is one of many luminaries at this years festival. He teams up with Nightmare On Elm Street franchise icon Lisa Wilcox to star in the world premiere of Mel House’s metaphysical horror Mystery Spot. After beguiling FrightFest with Driven, director/writers/stars Glenn Payne and Casey Dillard present the World premiere of their new slasher, Killer Concept Also welcomed back is Marcel Walz, who continues the terror travails of serial killer thriller Blind with the UK premiere of Pretty Boy.
Michael Mongillo, returns to the festival with the World Premiere of his intense body snatcher The Changed. This will be an additional main screen presentation, with the leading cast in attendance. The one-take time travel suspense comedy, Beyond The Infinite Two Minutes will now be shown as part of the Discovery stand.
The festival prides itself on unearthing genre gems from South America and this year will be no different. There will be three shining examples from Argentina: Gonzalo Calzada, writer/director of the FrightFest 2018 selection Lucefernia , returns with the UK premiere of his astonishing tour de force Nocturna: Side A – The Great Old Man’s Night, and there are European premieres for José María Cicala’s Shadow Of The Cat, starring Danny Trejo as you’ve never seen him before and Alejandro Cohen Arazi’s cult hit The Unburied. Plus, from Mexico, comes Forgiveness, a surreal, violent and revenge-laden horror thriller by new Mexploitation maestro Alex Kahuam.
When it comes to innovation in indie genre films, the U.S are right up there at the top. The festival will gives us a selection of Stateside shockers that promises to back that testament. Isolation is an incredibly rich anthology of nine chilling tales shot in lockdown. If your adored the Halloween portmanteau then Bad Candy will be added to your favourites. Then there’s Antidote, which goes deep inside a horror hospital, Stephen King Simmons’ stunning black-and-white feature debut The Park Sessions, promises to go beyond our wildest existential nightmares. Creature feature send up Greywood’s Plot, a monster flick for our times and the intense drama Touch – the winner of the NYC Independent Film Best Movie and Director awards.
The fearsome fun continues with Red Snow, a bloodsucking spook-a-blast that puts a stake through the heart of comedy horror. Metal fetishism goes the full John Waters with the unique Laguna Ave. Beau Ballinger’s She Watches From The Woods, a chilling walk between supernatural curses and mental health, the disturbing familial psychodrama Captive and the out of this world Night Drive.
FrightFest isn’t just about the genre features and shorts. As ever they bring us a intriguing selection of genre documentaries and this year’s picks are at their engaging best. Woodlands Dark Amd Days Bewitched: A History Of Folk Horror has been attracting much fantasy festival attention and it’s a 3-HOUR PLUS enchantment. Absolutely astonishing also is The Found Footage Phenomenon tells you everything you need to know about the roots and growth of the shaky-cam genre and POV Cinema. Finally, The Brilliant Terror Paul Hunt and Julie Kauffman’s obsessive and totally absorbing delve into the Grassroots Horror movement.
FrightFest’s First Blood strand has become a film industry watchword for those in the know wanting to discover the next great genre talent from the UK and Ireland. This years choices we have five titles which are all World premieres. Seb Cox’s Are We Monsters is a unique werewolf coming-of-age saga, Ian Steele’s BOY #5 is an innovative take on the vampire myth, Leroy Kincaide’s The Last Rite is an authentic paranormal rollercoaster ride and Conor Buro’s When The Screaming Starts is a spirited horror mockumentary. Finally, from Ireland, is Richard Waters’ Bring Out The Fear, which explores a doomed relationship on its final day.
Arrow Video FrightFest, the UK’s biggest horror and fantasy film festival, takes place at the Cineworld Leicester Square from Thursday 26th August – Monday 30th August.
Festival co-director Paul McEvoy said today: “At Arrow FrightFest this year we are thrilled to be presenting so many incredible new works from the International genre landscape. We’re showcasing a myriad of World Premiere screenings from many new and exciting talents, along with familiar names. The thrills are diverse and sensational, proving that the genre is truly alive, kicking and flourishing in these troubled times. We cannot wait to share the excitement with everyone”.
Passes go on sale on Saturday 24th July. Single tickets go on sale Thursday 29th July
Festival pass: £165. Day passes: £35 (Thurs), £60 (Fri & Sat), £50 (Sun & Mon)
Festival and Day Pass holders will be able to buy a discounted Digital pass for £40
Single Tickets: £14.50.
The digital add-on will allow full access to the digital component of the festival that runs from Wednesday 1st to Sunday 5th September.
Stand-alone tickets for the digital component of the 2021 Arrow video FrightFest will be available in August. Prices: £85 for full access and £7.50 for individual films.
Programme details: https://www.frightfest.co.uk
Ticketing details: https://www.frightfest.co.uk/tickets.html