New York’s top horror festival—bringing you the genre’s best from around the globe—is back for another wicked week of hair-raising premieres and rediscoveries, guest appearances and giveaways. The 11th edition launches off with the delightful yet blood-soaked holiday-set high-school musical Anna and the Apocalypse, followed by a Zombie Christmas Party, before turning darker with another yuletide end-of-days offering, Await Further Instructions. This year’s lineup also includes a trio of creepy Latin American offerings featuring possessions, dark fairy tales, and haunted hospitals; a selection of new indie horror at its most promising, Hurt, Boogeyman Pop, Blood Paradise, and The Witch in the Window; the retrospective sidebar “Tainted Waters,” featuring a quartet of 35mm titles whose horrors take place above or below the surface, or sometimes come creeping onto the land; and a brand new live edition of Glass Eye Pix’s acclaimed radio-play series Tales from Beyond the Pale, brought to you by the dynamic duo of Glenn McQuaid and Larry Fessenden. Plus, last year’s fast-working closing-night director Colin Minihan returns with What Keeps You Alive, and we conclude with Jonas Åkerlund’s harrowing black-metal tragedy Lords of Chaos. Programmed by Laura Kern and Rufus de Rham. Sponsored by IFC Midnight.
Opening Night · New York Premiere · Q&A with John McPhail & Christopher Leveaux · Zombie Christmas Party!As Anna (Ella Hunt) nears the end of high school, an unexplained plague begins spreading in her tiny Scottish town before Christmas break, and she and her classmates must battle hordes of zombies in order to make it to graduation. Oh and they sing and dance, too… Anna and the Apocalypse features merriment and menace in perfect balance.
Closing Night · New York Premiere · Q&A with Jonas Åkerlund and Rory Culkin · Closing Night PartyPioneering Norwegian black-metal band Mayhem experienced a rise and fall so notorious that it’s provided the subject of multiple books and documentaries. And now a dramatization of their tragic tale makes it to the screen, profoundly disturbing but with a macabre, comical touch.
New York Premiere · Introduction by actor Kris SaddlerNick brings his girlfriend Annji home for the holidays after three years of avoiding his massively dysfunctional family. On Christmas morning, a metallic substance surrounds the house, and they soon find they can’t leave. Tensions and paranoia escalate into blood-soaked chaos in this ever-relevant chiller.
World Premiere · Q&A with Patrick von Barkenberg and Andréa WinterReeling after her latest novel flops, a best-selling crime writer is sent by her publisher to the Swedish countryside to regain inspiration. Totally out of place in her new surroundings, she discovers just how dangerous farm life can be.
New York Premiere · Q&A with director Brad Elmore, actors Domnique Booth and Alix von Renner, and producer/designer Joshua PetersenA trio of perspective-shifting stories intersect into a maelstrom of murder, adolescent angst, sex, drugs, and black magic during the course of one summer weekend. This indie film has punk-rock energy to spare and a distinct cinematic vision that transcends its micro budget.
New York PremiereRose’s husband has recently returned from military deployment and is struggling with PTSD. During Halloween, they try to rekindle their relationship, heading to the town’s haunted hayride to relive old traditions—but the night gradually descends into chaos in this gruesome and terrifying slasher.
New York Premiere - Q&A with Justin Decloux and producer/composer Emily MillingFollowing a bad breakup, an aspiring filmmaker struggling with creative block begins hearing a sinister scream outside her window every evening. Justin Decloux’s ultra-indie second feature is as much a horror movie as a movie about the horror of creation.
North American PremiereIn an attempt to secure some quick cash, three sisters break into the home of a super-wealthy family—and get a whole lot more than they bargained for. But The Inhabitant is no simple take on the old home-invasion-gone-wrong scenario.
New York PremiereWriter-director Issa López’s alternately heart-wrenching and chilling film follows a 10-year-old who is haunted by the dead shell of her mother before taking up camp with a group of local orphan boys in their small Mexican village.
North American PremiereA doctor is drawn into a nightmarish world after a little girl disappears without a trace in this feature debut by J.C. Feyer, relentless in both its dedication to scaring the pants off the audience and to shining a light on Brazil’s social unrest.
New York Premiere · Q&A with Colin Minihan and Brittany AllenJules heads to a lakeside cabin with her wife, Jackie, to celebrate their one-year anniversary. The tranquil setting quickly turns terrifying, but to say anything more would spoil the surprises of this audacious and unsparing movie.
U.S. Premiere · Q&A with Andy Mitton and actors Alex Draper and Charlie TackerA divorced dad takes his 12-year-old son to the farmhouse he’s purchased to flip in middle-of-nowhere Vermont. It was cheap—and for a reason: an old witch haunts the premises, and she has no interest in sharing her home.
“Tainted Waters” Retrospective Sidebar
Introduction by director Ken WiederhornThe same year he appeared as Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars, Peter Cushing also played another grand villain in Shock Waves: a former SS commander involved in the creation of aquatic Nazi zombies as secret weapons.
Free and open to the public! Sponsored by HBO®
Saturday, August 18 at 3:00pm at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center Amphitheater.
Brittany Allen (What Keeps You Alive), Emily Milling (Impossible Horror), and Andréa Winter (Blood Paradise) weren’t just musical composers for their films screening in Scary Movies XI—they…
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