Fantasia Review: Teller & Robbins’ Play Dead

In the opening minutes of filmed stage show, Play Dead, Todd Robbins does that old side-show standby, he chews broken glass. But not just any glass, it is the frosted exterior casing of the one lightbulb that is to serve as the audiences life-line out of the small, cramped and now very dark off-broadway theatre in Greenwich Village. In this venue, filled with...

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Friday One Sheet (Fantasia Edition): Pontypool Changes

Featuring more birds and ears than David Lynch’s Blue Velvet, but also exploring the horrors in ‘normal’ rural areas, this wonderful teaser-poster for the Pontypool Sequel appearing both at the Fantasia Development Market this week as well as the poster show at La Cinémathèque Québécoise as a part of the alternate history poster exhibit...

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Fantasia Review: Toad Road

  In the tradition of mashing sub-genres together to get something entirely new and interesting, full credit goes to micro-indie avant garde chiller Toad Road for merging the wasted youth drug drama with the urban-legend horror flick. The experience of watching this quite vérité experiment is akin to taking essence of Drugstore Cowboy and infusing it into...

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Fantasia Review: Black Pond

  DIn the running with Quentin Dupieux’s Wrong as the funniest entry in the Fantasia and possibly of this year so far, I am going to give Black Pond the edge because of its Errol Morris “Life is pretty damn strange, would you fancy a cup of tea and a chat about it?” penchant for absurdity in the mundane. While the events depicted in this...

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Fantasia Review: Resolution

  David Mamet once wrote that the end of a great film should be both surprising and inevitable. Resolution is a horror movie of ideas; a twisted semiotic pretzel which is an ode to our collective addiction to scary movies, and how we glean meaning from the experience. The titles dual meaning, both in the finality of an ending and as a means of seeing...

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Fantasia Review: Jackpot

  Oscar Svendson is in deep trouble. Picked up by the police at a strip-bar with a dead fat woman laying on top of him, one of a dozen corpses littering the place, and a still-warm shot-gun in his hands, he has a lot of ‘splainin to do! And in a Kaiser Soze act of raconteur, story-tell he does. How does a used tanning bed, a pile of monopoly money...

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Fantasia Review: Amok

  Cities have a boiling point. Like the ‘Summer of Sam’ in New York, or the Rodney King incident and fallout in Los Angeles, the individual people, each a tiny molecule of activity, can bump into one another slowly, raising the temperature, the kinetic energy, of a pocket to the point where the mounting pressure (an engine’s overworked...

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Fantasia Review: Funeral Kings

  Even though school is in session during Funeral Kings, it feels like one of those ‘endless summer’ movies where boys that are too young to work, and too old to hang out with their parents, find interesting and elaborate ways to get into trouble. Befreckled Andy and his best friends Charlie and Bobby aim to misbehave while doing altar-boy...

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Fantasia Review: Wrong

  If Quentin Dupieux’s genre deconstruction effort, Rubber, from a couple years ago, left some folks scratching their head, or even critical of its ‘extended comedy sketch’ nature, then Wrong is perhaps not the film for them. With a bigger thematic reach, and a far more episodic structure, Wrong is likely as close as we will ever get to...

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Fantasia Review: For Love’s Sake

  The latest razzle dazzle genre mash, For Love’s Sake, from the maddeningly prolific Takashi Miike tackles the high melodrama of unrequited love with a gaggle of high school seniors as they collectively pave the road to hell with good intentions via breaking out into song and dance numbers. Lest one, for even a second, think that Miike has hopped on...

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