Showing posts with label 2015 glasgow film festival. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2015 glasgow film festival. Show all posts

29 April 2015

Dead by Dawn 2015 Review - When Animals Dream(2014)

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Drama, Horror
Altitude Film Distribution
DVD Release Date:
1st June 2015 (UK)
Dead By Dawn 2015
Jonas Alexander Arnby
Lars Mikkelsen, Sonia Suhl, Sonja Richter

One of the most interesting aspects of being a horror fan is getting to see the continual resurrection of classic monsters. It feels like an offense to call Jonas Alexander Arnby’s When Animals Dream a monster film, but it’s essentially an abstract version of a classic story; fresh and clean, with a great sense of subtle iconography.
Small town ignorance, conservative values, puberty, death, and sins of the mother prove a potent but studied group of interests for the odd stoicism of Arnby’s vision. Sonja Suhl is terrific, channelling the innocence and charm of a beautiful outsider, only to prove she has no qualms getting Carrie-nasty for “quiet girl” vengeance. Importantly, Arnby makes the film more about the promise of violence from the community than the inevitable transformation in Marie. From the start Marie seems to be undergoing some kind of social gauntlet, dealing with the stigma of her mother’s mysterious illness whilst surviving the copious male aggression in her small sea-side town. As with many puberty-related horror films, the dangers of her condition are consistently outmatched and amplified by the world around her. It’s an interesting parallel to Paul Wright’s For Those in Peril, an equally pessimistic film about sea-side communities and destructive superstition.
Visually the film is consistently haunting and serene. The harsh light of day spells danger for Marie and her family, where safety only arrives with total darkness. Fantastic shots of artificial light in the early hours always spell doom for someone, extending Arby’s cynicism towards attempts to control nature.
Though the film often rests on Suhl’s quiet performance, Lars Mikkelsen is an equally huge and important component of the piece, playing a torn and fraught figure locked between the demise of his wife and the slow submission of his daughter to the same terrible curse. Arnby is wise to tell us as little as possible start to finish, letting us enjoy the quiet but charged politics of an introverted community, whilst putting us in the same bamboozled position as Marie.

A slow but mysterious venture: When Animals Dream is a haunted film; tired at the fact it’s still dealing with an aggressive patriarchy but triumphant in its remoulding of genre mythos.

Scott Clark

5 April 2015

DVD Review - The Atticus Institute (2015)

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Universal Pictures UK
Rating: 15
Release Date:
27th February 2015 (Glasgow Film Festival)
23rd March 2015 (UK DVD)
Chris Sparling
William Mapother, Julian Acosta, Anne Betancourt,Sharon Maughan
Buy:The Atticus Institute [DVD] [2014]

In 1976 the Atticus institute of Pennsylvania bore witness to the only apparent case of possession certified by the US government and for the past 40 years no definitive account of what happened has been released. It sounds as average as it is. Chris Sparling’s horror mockumentary The Atticus Institute is indeed commendable for editing and performance, yet disappointing for its cheap scares, tired story, and non-existent characters.
The whole ‘found footage’ thing has garnered a pretty dubious reputation after, what can only be referred to as, a commercial shake-down. Everyone’s been using it for a good few years now and unlike most horror sub-genres, found footage appears one of the trickiest to sell in conjunction with an original idea. Most of the most memorable handheld moments of late come in the form of cameo techniques in standard features. So technically Atticus is, for all intents and purposes, a very grave film but also a very dull one.
The fact it is spooky is testament to the actors involved. William Mapother and John Rubinstein lead a collection of terrific character actors who help lend some much needed gravitas to proceedings. Atticus reminds us how unnerving it is to be told a story by another person, to feel the fear through their reactions, but it also reminds us of everything that’s uninspired or boring about the format, and genre, at whole unfortunately. Thundering sound and jump scares are the easiest way to evoke reaction and it’s a shame they are so overused because Sparling has actually crafted a well-shot docu-horror you can really buy into.
With no interest in characterisation, Atticus swings from moment to moment, feeling like a ramshackle collection of turns as opposed to any kind of journey. Not bothering to reveal the source of the terror or give adequate back-story, the film doesn’t really throw up another option for us to invest in, except its original promise that something will happen.

Scott Clark

GFF 2015 Review - 88 (2014)

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2015 Glasgow Film Festival
Film 4 Frightfest Glasgow
Rating: 18
April Mullen
Katharine Isabelle, Christopher Lloyd, Tim Doiron, Michael Ironside

A young woman (Katharine Isabelle) wakes up in a diner with no idea who or where she is and after finding a gun in her backpack, she staggers from hint to hint in order to track down and kill the man who killed her lover. It’s a great idea and it looks fresh too, but April Mullen’s 88 is a complicated feature.

Unlike Stuart Simpson’s garage femsploitation trip Monstro!, 88 doesn’t give itself fully to silly ideas and pulpy lineage. Mullen appears wary of what outright camp can do to audience involvement in a solid story, but isn’t sure how far to push it. The story starts off pretty perfectly, nuanced and intriguing, Isabelle props the film up on her startlingly honest performance before switching to badass and hooking us in for a good time. Only, as the film starts to bend over backwards to accommodate its convoluted path, it becomes increasingly confusing.

88 isn’t interested in telling us its story in a linear way, but it’s also not that bothered about keeping us involved in the intricacies of its plot. Instead we’re emotionally hijacked by a superficial relationship and quietly asked to care for a typically handsome and dull love. Think of 88 as Romeo and Juliet meets Momento on the highway of bad taste. The fetishisation of milk, Isabelle’s often insane dialogue, and that red dress aren’t problems until the film starts taking itself too seriously. There’s fun to be had but some of the really heart-breaking scenes with Isabelle are boisterously undermined by how blasé and ridiculous the script demands her to be. Mullen herself pops up as an eccentric arms dealer, but it comes across as far too try-hard. When the film wastes time on dumb details, but can’t put together a convincing shoot-out, there needs to be a readdress of focus.

Isabelle grabs our attention and wrestles it into a firm headlock, her slinky femme fatale pissing a path through supermarkets, shooting her way through bowling alleys, and generally giving us more bang for our buck than we could ever have asked for. Christopher Lloyd seems somewhat out of place as possessive pimp Cyrus, never going for hammy, instead meeting Isabelle halfway for oddly touching character drama. 88 scribe Tim Doiron pops up as sidekick Ty but his zany dialogue and irritating performance are a surplus woe, adding unrequired childishness to an already silly film. Michael Ironside appears up for a fantastic wee turn as a sympathetic cop and one can’t help but feel his storyline, and potential further involvement, could have been more interesting than the chosen path.

88 has frankly mad use of flashback that won’t be for everyone, but at its heart there’s a fun tale of revenge and memory loss fronted by an impressive scream queen. There’s something being held back in the punch, something that could have made things a little more solid, but Mullen’s road movie is still a blast.

Scott Clark

1 April 2015

GFF 2015 Review - Wyrmwood (2015)

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Horror, Comedy
StudioCanal UK
2015 Glasgow Film Festival,
Film4 Frightfest Glasgow
BD Release Date:
11th May 2015 (UK)
Kiah Roache-Turner
Jay Gallagher, Bianca Bradey, Leon Burchill Yure Covich, Luke McKenzie,Berynn Schwerdt
Buy:Wyrmwood: Road Of The Dead [Blu-ray] [2015]

Wyrmwood, the stunning debut feature from Kiah Roache-Turner is an impressive foray into the world of schlocky hand-made horror by a group of filmmakers dedicated to the ideals of Indy cinema. And it totally works.

Barry (Jay Gallagher) is a loving husband and father, thrown into hell after a meteor shower brings the dead back to life. After his sister (Bianca Bradley) is kidnapped by gas-mask wearing soldiers, Barry heads out on a rescue mission with a group of apocalypse survivors.

The story itself isn’t anything new, it’s the tried and tested formula applied to most zombie films, and it works fine. Wyrmwood’s real flair lies in its execution; the comedy of the writing, the intimate nature of the project (the film took 4 years to film; the crew could only convene at weekends), and the skill with which the story is filmed.

Wyrmwood doesn’t look like trash and it doesn’t want to. A great sense of motion, intuitive camera work, and a demented kind of energy definitely don’t get in the way of this handmade extravaganza. Sure its low-low budget horror, but this is a film with a flawless sense of exactly what it is and how to make it happen without looking like shit. Too often a film with a low budget looks like a film with a low budget, but Roache-Turner injects such energy and insanity into his script that the film could never be accused of being lazy, inept, or dull.

Dialogue is surprisingly sparky and the acting is solid, which isn’t exactly something to write home about, but it’s vaguely impressive considering the calibre of most films released in the wake of the zombie exploitation craze. Gallagher makes a great and oddly iconic looking hero; barely skipping a beat between the quiet domestic and apocalyptic punk landscapes of Barry’s life. But that’s not to say the drama is missing, there’s plenty of gruelling and heartfelt zombie concepts at work here. Special mention goes to the trauma of driving miles with your zombified daughter screaming in the back of the car.

Practical gore is probably the fastest way to my heart, so Wyrmwood gets bonus points for appeasing the gods of hard work, manual labour, and disgraceful DIY. Saying that, the film’s most zany trick comes hand in hand with some ill-fitting digital effects. Wyrmwood’s zombies exhale an odd flammable gas that our heroes hijack to power their truck. It’s daft, but in a film where government scientists dance to KC and the Sunshine band in zombie autopsy rooms, you can’t let daftness get in the way of viewing this hilarious totally impressive horror adventure.

Director Kiah Roache-Turner is an innovative talent to look out for if his debut feature is anything to go by, Wyrmwood is fantastic and genre fans will adore its lack of sanity and band of zany characters. <

Scott Clark

26 March 2015

DVD review - [Rec] 4 Apocalypse(2014)

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Horror, Thriller
Entertainment One
2015 Glasgow Film Festival
DVD Release Date:
2nd March 2015 (UK)
Jaume Balagueró
Manuela Velasco, Ismael Fritschi, Paco Manzanedo, Héctor Colomé,
Buy:Rec: Apocalypse [DVD]

Considering how impressive the [Rec] franchise has been so far, [Rec] 4: Apocalypse comes as an unfortunate disappointment. Ditching the found footage origins of the franchise (for the second time), Apocalypse finds it difficult to create an experience as terrifying as the first two, or as peculiar as the third.
Picking up exactly where [Rec] 2 left off, Angela Vidal (the superb Manuela Velascoe) is rescued from the doomed apartment where it all began. Waking on board a tanker ship in the middle of the ocean, Vidal comes to terms with just how dangerous the unknown virus is.
The ship is a great set, but proves less iconic than the infamous stairwell of the apartment. The tight claustrophobic corridors of the tanker’s insides should be ample ground for a few good scares but they all seem to be relegated to the tiny monitor of a surveillance cam or, worse, off-screen. Velascoe kicks into gear as action horror heroin, but it comes too little too late. A shame because her performance has been a key component in the success of the franchise. Special mention goes to the late great Hector Colome for a charismatic turn as Dr. Ricarte, easily one of the most enjoyable parts of the “final” [Rec] film.
Choosing to ditch Angela’s turn to the dark side at the climax of [Rec 2], Apocalypse seems unsure of where to go next. Paco Plaza’s Army of Darkness style adventure Genesis was the perfect solution to the heavy horror of the first two, but proves a hard act to follow for Jaume’s return. But maybe that’s the essence of the horror franchise: fourth instalments are rarely great, and usually mark the point where money and fan desire over-ride solid storytelling.

[Rec]’s bizarre mythology has been drip-fed to us thus far, each film playing around with the tone and scope of the infection, yet Apocalypse feels like a step backwards. The scares are bafflingly lacking, when a return to more intimate surrounds should have been a sure-fire way to ramp up the terror. Jaume’s return marks the apparent end of the franchise, though its silly final scenes hint at the kind of ludicrous behaviour I would have sooner lauded than this relatively safe affair.

[Rec] 4: Apocalypse is pretty dull, all things considered. An action element proves poor substitute for the genuine chills and thrills presented thus far in the franchise.

Scott Clark

16 March 2015

GFF 2015 Review - Clown (2014)

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Horror, Comedy
StudioCanal UK
Glasgow Film Festival
DVD Release Date:
2nd March 2015 (UK)
Jon Watts
Eli Roth, Peter Stormare, Laura Allen , Andy Powers,Christian Distefano
Buy:Clown [DVD]

Jon Watts’ Clown is an exceptional example of how much fun can still be had in the darkest corners of the horror genre without sacrificing a good story. Playing it straight in the realm of clown horror proves a bit of a tone twister, but actually works pretty perfectly in this Eli Roth produced monster movie.

When the clown for his son’s birthday party doesn’t show up, loving father and real estate agent Kent (Andy Powers) is forced to don a mysterious clown suit he finds at one of his houses. But the suit doesn’t come off, instead altering Kent’s body and behaviour, giving him a taste for child-flesh.

Like Sinister, Clown plays on the old “found object” terror, but by its half way mark, it’s taken on more of a Rare Exports vibe, unearthing the horrific truth behind an everyday icon and letting chaos spark at every turn. Watts is astute not to lose his head amidst the terror and confusion. Keeping the ideals of yester-year’s monsters and camp creature-features alive through kitschy gore details and fabulous practical effects is a wise move. It lends further startling substance to a film that already has so many great ideas, the least of which is to structure itself like a slasher for kids, complete with its own set of rules.

Scribe Christopher D. Ford obviously had a total hoot crafting this sadistic little screenplay, and you can’t blame him. This is the perfect update of the clown horror film, a well-considered venture into social anxiety via a garish and gory display of child mutilation, body horror, bright colours, and total madness. Screw IT, Clown wipes the floor with contemporaries and its entire repertoire of inspirations alike, but still has a great time doing it. Its not just on Watts and Ford though, Powers is integral to the meat of the story, because, after all, there’s still a man inside that foul suit. Peter Stormare shows up as the expert/previous owner fo the suit and seems to be having a ball spouting bonkers sentiments whilst terrifying all the films’ sane characters..

There’s a strong element of cheesy fun at work here, but not quite to the point of outright comedy. Kent’s struggle to remove the haunting outfit is funny, but the resultant body horror genuinely gets under your skin. Once the suit takes hold the film sets on a path of ridiculously confrontational horror and insanity: child abduction, murder, graphic suicide, Stormare’s daft turn, great use of found footage, finger nibbling, kiddy-crunching its all here. A genius sequence of mass-terror at a soft play is arguably the crowning achievement of the feature, delivering every single nightmare you could want from a film about a killer-clown. Watts’ has constructed a perfect mash-up of genre ideals without losing his humour, and he’s done it beautifully.

A funny, but mostly horrifying, monster-flick flaunting terrific scares and a great story. Show your kids, show your wee brothers and sisters. This is the film that fucks children up for life.

Scott Clark

6 March 2015

GFF2015 Review - Tales Of The Grim Sleeper (2015)

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Shear Entertainment
Rating: 15
Glasgow Film Festival
Nick Bromfield
Pam Brooks

In 2010 Lonnie Franklin Jr was arrested for the crimes of the so-called ‘Grim Sleeper’, a serial killer active in downtown LA since the early 80’s. His capture came after 25 years of botched investigations and public outcry, his moniker awarded due to the Sleeper’s apparent habit of killing only once every few years. The moniker, like the investigation, is a fallacy and Franklin Jr is now thought to be responsible for well over a hundred disappearances. Nick Broomfield reveals the truth behind the case in his latest documentary Tales of the Grim Sleeper

Broomfield continues to be one of the legends of contemporary documentary filmmaking because he is continually content to throw himself into subject matter that most would find uncomfortable. But he seems so at ease yet never laid back, so sharp in his questioning but never confrontational. His monotonous tones slide their way around fields of venture alien to the vast majority. His work with serial killer Aileen Wuornos picks out the blatant sexism of American justice, but also the total disregard shown for sex workers. Its in Tales of the Grim Sleeper that Broomfield has perhaps provided the best canvas for issues of sexism, race, and class. His is, more than ever, a supporting voice in the plight of those shoehorned into the fringes of society.

At the very least, there is an attempt to highlight sex work as a site of gross cultural apathy, for Broomfield finds himself at the heart of a story as-of-yet shockingly untold. The police have, for years, danced around the concrete facts of the case (A, that there was a serial killer, and B that the public needed to know) so Tales of the Grim Sleeper appears to be the first full account of what has happened. Frankly it’s disturbing, but not surprising, that the white-run LAPD have never given as varied, in-depth, and honest an account as this. Broomfield minimises issues around his own role, as white alien, by minimising the white voices in the film and letting the story play out courtesy of those who have lived it. An unflinching respect for the black community of LA paired with an unspoken disregard for the bureaucracy that permitted a 25 year reign of terror make this an acidic and astute piece of filmmaking.

Between the blatant racism of American police and the homogenized sexism of one of LA’s poorest areas, Broomfield’s latest looks at the perfect storm which enabled the Grim Sleeper to kill unchallenged for a quarter century. Terrifying arresting viewing.

Scott Clark

GFF 2015 - Man From Reno (2014)

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Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Glagow Film Festival
Rating: 15
Dave Boyle
Ayako Fujitani, Pepe Serna, Kazuki Kitamura,

One night, after hitting an unidentified Japanese man with his car, Sherriff Del Moral (Pepe Serna) stumbles on a mysterious case that leads him to San Francisco. There, author Aki Akahori (Ayako Fujitani) has fled Tokyo and after enjoying a brief fling with a mysterious stranger, is thrust into the very same case. Dave Boyle’s Man from Reno keeps threatening to be a dark (at least consistently serious) film pulling on film noir inspirations and pulp paperback detective stories, but it never quite gets there.

The humour is off, sometimes far too dry, others far too silly, considering the story, but then, there’s another issue. The story, in attempts to achieve the kind of ludicrous twisting narrative of the noir thriller, loses itself too many times. It delves in deeper and deeper but doesn’t manage to drag us with any great zeal. Though, one of the most interesting things about Man from Reno is its array of zany multinational characters who, though sometimes jarring, are often enjoyable. Unfortunately its array of strange characters are left in a pile somewhere out of sight, its story hopelessly convoluted and confused by too many characters and not enough intrigue. There is some success in Kazuki Kitamura’s portrayal of a handsome stranger and Serna’s wily old cop, but even when those two characters eventually meet, it’s unfortunately underwhelming.

The humour along with the mix of genre templates is surprisingly uninvolving. The darker streaks work best when married with a significant amount of mystery, but the humour inevitably sinks the boat. Del Moral’s investigation really pulls you in, but is thrown overboard by a middling and distracted story of author melodrama. This is a mixed pot that’s trying far too hard to achieve a type of story usually marked by shameless nonchalance.

Moments of gorgeous noir cinematography are few and far between in the glorified melodrama of Man from Reno. Viewers will be split by which side of the plot they enjoy more, but as a whole this isnt quite there.

Scott Clark

21 January 2015

Glasgow Film Festival Unveil Their 2015 Line Up With Noah Baumbach's While We're Young

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The programme for the eleventh edition of Glasgow Film Festival was announced today, with an exciting, innovative, audience-focused festival packed with UK, European and World premieres, and the festival’s trademark pop-up cinema events making new use of some of the city’s most unusual venues. GFF15, which is supported by Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, EventScotland, Creative Scotland and BFI, will open with the European Premiere of Noah Baumbach’s While We’re Young, and close with the UK Premiere of Ruben Östlund’s Force Majeure. This year’s programme also offers an exciting new platform for early-career feature film directors, pays tribute to Ingrid Bergman as an early feminist icon and celebrates Glasgow as a city hooked on the silver screen.

In a major step forward, GFF has introduced a feature film award for the first time. The brand new Audience Award, which asks the ticket-buying public to vote on a selection of ten films by first and second-time directors, has been designed to showcase some exceptional early career talents creating pioneering and brilliant work, often on shoestring budgets without the backing and marketing power of major studios. The winner of the Audience Award will be announced at the Closing Gala. All film critics accredited for the festival are also offered the chance to vote on their favourite films from across the programme, and a Glasgow Film Festival Critics’ Choice list will be published after the festival.

Major UK premieres this year include Wim Wenders’ Oscar®-nominated documentary Salt of the
Earth and Still Alice, for which Julianne Moore is tipped to win the Best Actress Oscar®.It would'nt be a film festival without a Juliet Binoche film and Oliver Assayas' Clouds Of Sils Maria which also stars Chloe Grace Moretz and Kirsten Stewart an uncomfortable reflection of an actress agrees to take part in a play that launched her career.Dustin Hoffman is a choirmaster  who adopts an young boy to help develop his creative talents in Boychoir. Roy Andersson’s masterful reflection on the human condition unfolds in thirty nine meticulously composed tableaux vivants with A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence.Marshland,is a richly-textured Spanish murder mystery, like True Detective set in the Andaluz swamps.The Dark Horse a richly textured biopic of chess champion Gen Potini, featuring the performance of a lifetime by Once Were Warriors’ and soon to be lead in The Walking Dead Spin-off Cliff Curtis.

The magic of Film festivals is bringing the best of films from around the world to a screen near you and Glasgow Film Festival deliver that promise for those hoping to attend. In the 16 strands the festival has the Window On The World & Cinemasters strands delivering most distinctive films from around the globe with a big focus on China and Japan.Some of the fantastic highlights include a Danny Boyle's homage to Californian/Japan noir with Man From Reno, Berlin Golden Bear winner Black Coal, Thin Ice a broody atmospheric murder mystery set in 1999 Northern China. Zhang Zimou's look at national impact of the cultural revolution with Coming Home.Daihachi Yoshida's award winning Pale Moon and Uzumasa Limelight an utterly charming salute to the art of the background actor, by Ken Ochiai makes its European Premiere.

If you adore old classic films 'Here's Looking At You Kid' will celebrate the career of Golden age icon Ingrid Bergman with great selection of her films. From Casablanca, Notorious, Murder On The Orient Express to Spellbound are some of the classics on show all for £5 a ticket. Remember its not all about the films, Glasgow Film Festival has gained a great reputations for its film related events, The Glasgow Youth Film Festival  which will open with sci-fi thriller The Signal starring Laurence Fisburne , If horror is your thing Film Frighfest will be in attendance for it's 10th Anniversary selection of the best horror from around the world.

Head over to the website for full line up

As acute and timely as they come... an almost perfect 90-minute hit of confident and inspired comedic commentary.” ★★★★★ Catherine Shoard, The Guardian
Growing older but feeling younger has rarely seemed as bittersweet as it does in the latest cautionary comedy from Frances Ha director Noah Baumbach. There are moments here to make everyone squirm with recognition and rock with laughter as Baumbach mines wry comic gold from an unexpected meeting of the generations. Filmmaker Josh (Ben Stiller) and his wife Cornelia (Naomi Watts) are settled in marriage and cosily stalled careers, while the rest of their forty-something pals are buried under babies and domesticity. Into their lives blast the twenty-something, fedora-wearing, aggressively urban hipsters Jamie (Adam Driver) and Darby (Amanda Seyfried), and the older couple are flattered and attracted by their attention and idealism. Offered a second chance at youth, who wouldn’t grab it? However, as their new best friends turn out to have a hidden agenda, the breezy comic tone deepens and darkens into something more profound. While We’re Young was a huge hit at Toronto International Film Festival, and we’re delighted to be able to introduce European audiences to the film.

Wednesday 18 February (19.00) | repeated Thursday 19 February (13.00, 15.30) | GFT


Winner: Best Foreign Language Film, Critics Choice Movie Awards

One single moment can change everything in a relationship, and that’s exactly what happens in Force Majeure, a brilliant, Cannes Jury Prize-winner destined to leave you debating long after the final credits. A happy family are on a skiing vacation in the French Alps when an avalanche heads inexorably towards their mountaintop restaurant. Tomas (Johannes Bah Kuhnke) grabs his mobile and runs, leaving his wife Ebba (Lisa Loven Kongsli) and their children to fend for themselves. His instinct for self-preservation is the spark for a scalpel-sharp examination of love, guilt and devotion that may be even more destructive than the avalanche. By creating the circumstances in which everything we take for granted is torn away, writer/director Ruben Östlund has found an ingenious way to explore the flaws and cracks in a marriage. Is there just an unbridgeable gap between the way men and women view the world? Prepare to battle for the moral high ground at the UK premiere of one of the year’s most audacious and gripping films.

Sunday 1 March (20.00) | GFT

Tickets for the main festival programme are on sale from 10am on Monday 26 January. Passes for FrightFest, GFF’s horror festival-within-the-festival, go on sale at 10am Thursday 22 January. The brochure will be available online from 19.15 on Wednesday 21 January at

Aussie Zombies To Spanish Zombies - Film4 Frightfest Unveil Their 10th Anniversary 2015 Glasgow Line-up

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Kicking off with a special screening on Thurs 26 Feb and hosting eleven films on Fri Feb 27 and Sat 28 Feb, the UK’s favourite horror fantasy festival celebrates ten ‘gore-ious’ years at its second home at the Glasgow Film Festival with an all-exclusive slate of the freshest new horror films around.

The shocktacular line-up starts on Thurs 26 Feb in sumptuous Hammer-style with the UK premiere of the Edgar Allan Poe based ELIZA GRAVES featuring an all-star Hollywood cast, including Kate Beckinsale, Ben Kingsley, Jim Sturgess and Michael Caine.

Friday’s fearsome line-up kicks off with the European premiere of THE ATTICUS INSTITUTE, the paranormal activity shockumentary of the year, written and directed by Chris Sparling, who wrote ‘Buried’. This is followed by the World Premiere of THE HOARDER, starring an on-form Mischa Barton who uncovers the worst horrors in the dank depths of a storage unit facility. Next up is the riotous WYRMWOOD, the zombie black comedy full of catastrophic carnage and over-the-top 88, a glorious, gory and fast-paced homage to cult exploitation revenge thrillers. This is the World Premiere for April Mullen’s most graphic film to date, starring American Mary herself, Katharine Isabelle. Rounding off the evening in terrifying style is the European Premiere of THE ASYLUM (BACKMASK) – in which Marcus Nispel, director of ‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ and ‘Friday The 13th’ remakes. takes us through a rampant landscape of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll possession.
splatter. From Australian brothers Kiah and Tristan Roache-Turner, it’s the deadpan bloodbath everybody is talking about. The 9pm slot goes to

Getting the Saturday programme off to a nerve-jangling start is the UK premiere of the much anticipated and very disturbing CLOWN, produced by Eli Roth. This is followed by FrightFest’s popular retrospective slot which this year is Mario Bava’s BLOOD AND BLACK LACE, one of the most influential genre movies of all time. Next up is the World Premiere of THE WOODS MOVIE – a behind-the-scenes exclusive reveal to everything you ever needed to know about how ‘The Blair Witch Project’ was produced, shot and marketed to become a groundbreaking blockbusting classic. This has been directed, edited and scripted by Russell Gomm, who is a long-serving member of the FrightFest TV crew.

Saturday evening unfolds in gut-wrenching style. Mo Hayder is one of Britain’s most acclaimed crime authors, but it took the Flemish Film Industry to turn her bestseller THE TREATMENT into a smash Euro success and FrightFest is pleased to present the UK Premiere of this harrowing serial killer thriller. This is followed by a real treat…FrightFest unleashed the Spanish sensation [REC] onto unsuspecting audiences in Glasgow 2008 and the organisers are delighted to host the UK Premiere of Jaume Balagueró’s [REC]: APOCALYPSE, the shattering visceral conclusion to the global horror phenomenon. And to end the FrightFest carnival of carnage is the UK premiere of the creepy, brain-freezing THERE ARE MONSTERS, an instant cult classic and one of the scariest ‘under the radar’ movies of the year.

Alan Jones, co-director, said today: "It’s been a decade of the decayed. The Glasgow Film Festival has been an instrumental part of FrightFest’s ever-increasing success story in becoming the UK’s leading horror fantasy brand and we wanted to do something extra special to celebrate our prestigious tenth milestone. So it was important to us to showcase a whole range of brand new titles, many of which will not have entered the genre conscious yet, and have never been seen on UK shores before. Because our Scottish audiences have always admired FrightFest for its cutting edge quirkiness, and our 2015 line-up reflects that approach to the horror hilt".

With special guests, surprises on screen and off, new short films showcase surprises and the festival’s unique community feeling, FrightFest at GFF has now become a must-attend occasion on the horror fantasy fan's calendar.

The festival’s guest line-up will be announced shortly,

To book tickets:
+44 (0)141 332 6535 / /

Please note that FrightFest passes go on sale Thurs 22 from 10am. Price: £70. This covers all films on 27 & 28 Feb only.
Tickets for ‘Eliza Graves’ and the Fri/Sat films will go on sale Mon 26 Jan from 10am. Prices: £9, £7 (concession).

Check out the specially made 2015 Film 4 Frightfest Glasgow Showreel


21:00 ELIZA GRAVES (UK Premiere)

Synopsis: When young Doctor Edward Newgate (Jim Sturgess) arrives at Stonehearst Asylum in search of an apprenticeship he is warmly welcomed by superintendent Doctor Lamb (Ben Kingsley). At first, intrigued by Lamb’s modern methods of treating the insane, a series of events and warnings from the stunningly beautiful Eliza Graves (Kate Beckinsale) lead him to make a shocking discovery. It’s a revelation that exposes Lamb’s medical utopia and pushes Edward to the limits of his conscience. Nobody is who or what they appear to be. Based on the Edgar Allan Poe story ‘The System of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether’.

Director: Brad Anderson Screenwriter: Joe Gangemi 112 mins USA 2014
Cast: Kate Beckinsale, Ben Kingsley, Jim Sturgess, Michael Caine



13:00: THE ATTICUS INSTITUTE (European Premiere)

Synopsis: Dr. Henry West (William Mapother) founded The Atticus Institute in the 1970s to study telekinesis, clairvoyance E.S.P. and other unexplained psi-related phenomena. Thousands of subjects were tested using scientific methods many of whom showed abilities defying explanation by known physical laws. But just after West published the promising results of their research work, the small facility was mysteriously shut down in November 1976 by a concerned US Government. The reason? They met Judith Winstead (Rya Kihlstedt) whose supernatural abilities tested far beyond anything ever before witnessed.

Director: Chris Sparling Writer: Chris Sparling 92 mins USA 2015
Cast: William Mapother, Rya Kihlstedt, Rob Kerkovich

16:00 THE HOARDER (World Premiere)
Synopsis: When Ella (Mischa Barton) discovers her Wall Street banker boyfriend is renting a secret storage unit, she suspects he’s using it to hide an affair. Enlisting the help of her best friend Molly (Emily Atack) she breaks into the facility only to discover something more terrifying instead. Now trapped in a darkened building with a group of neurotic strangers who start disappearing one by one, Ella soon uncovers even worse horror in the dank depths. Her life or death battle to escape eternal enslavement is about to begin….

Director: Matt Winn Screenwriters: James Handel, Matt Winn, Chris Denne 84 mins UK 2015
Cast: Mischa Barton, Robert Knepper, Charlotte Salt

18:30 WYRMWOOD (UK Premiere)

Synopsis: A post-apocalyptic zombie invasion, caused by a wayward comet, turns personal for Barry, an Oz mechanic (Jay Gallagher) when his sister Brooke (Bianca Bradey) is abducted by a sinister team of gas-masked soldiers for flesh-eating experiments by a mad scientist. Sporting MAD MAX-style designs, a glorious sense of humour, energetic execution, new and outrageous zombie lore and KC and the Sunshine Band, this super-fresh spin on a favourite genre is a raucous riot of black comedy, catastrophic carnage and over-the-top splatter.

Director: Kiah Roache-Turner Screenwriters: Kiah Roache-Turner, Tristan Roache-Turner
98 mins Australia 2014
Cast: Jay Gallagher, Bianca Bradey, Leon Burchill

21:00 88 (World Premiere)

Synopsis: Gwen (Katharine Isabelle) arrives disheveled at a mysterious roadside diner. But who is she really because she has no idea where she is or how she got there in such an anguished state. Split between two timelines, Gwen gets taken on a violence-fuelled journey into death and destruction and becomes the most wanted woman in Tennessee seeking out the person responsible for her lover's murder.

Director: April Mullen Screenwriters: Tom Doiron, April Mullen 88 mins Canada 2015
Cast: Katharine Isabelle, Christopher Lloyd, Michael Ironside

23:15 THE ASYLUM (BACKMASK) (European Premiere)

Synopsis: Six teens throw a party in a rundown building and find a vintage record. Talk turns to ‘backmasking’ - subliminal messages recorded onto a music groove heard only when the track is played backwards – and they play the vinyl for a giggle. Soon a seemingly malevolent entity has infiltrated the group, wreaking havoc. However the spirit is actually trying to convey a message and the real source of horror is something - or someone - much closer to home.

Director: Marcus Nispel Screenwriters, Marcus Nispel, Kirsten Elms 90 mins USA 2015
Cast: Stephen Lang, Brett Dier, Brittany Curran



11.00 CLOWN (UK Premiere)

Synopsis: When the entertainer hired for his son’s sixth birthday party is a no-show, doting father Kent dons a clown outfit himself. But after the festivities, he finds he can’t take it off – the bulbous nose is stuck to his face, the frizzy wig glued to his hair and the make-up permanently etched on his features. Too late he learns the costume is the skin of an ancient demon and his family must race to break the curse before the transformation into a homicidal killer with outsize shoes is complete.

Director: John Watts Screenwriters: Christopher D. Ford, John Watts 102 mins USA / Canada 2014
Cast: Peter Stormare, Eli Roth, Laura Allen

13:30 BLOOD AND BLACK LACE (Retrospective Premiere)

Synopsis: Six models at Contessa Cristina Como’s chic Rome fashion house are tortured and violently murdered by a ghost-like masked psychopath for a telltale diary containing incriminating scandal. A chiller way ahead of its time and considered the main evolutionary starting point for the entire giallo genre that would inspire Dario Argento, this key masterpiece of menace is presented here in all its restored glory.

Director: Mario Bava Screenwriters: Mario Bava, Giuseppe Barilla, Marcello Fondato 88 mins Italy 1964 (Subtitled)
Cast: Cameron Mitchell, Eva Bartok, Lea Lander

16:00 THE WOODS MOVIE (World Premiere)
Synopsis: In October 1997, a group of filmmakers ventured into the Maryland woods to produce a low budget independent horror movie. THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT would become a global phenomenon and began the ‘found footage’ genre that remains a potent force today. Now for the first time you can see how that record-breaking groundbreaker came into being. From never-before-seen recordings of pre-production meetings, audition tapes and test footage to the actual shooting, first preview screenings and marketing at the Sundance Film Festival, all the key personnel guide you through the discussions and decisions that minted a shock sensation classic.

Director: Russell Gomm Screenwriter: Russell Gomm 84 mins USA 2015
Cast: Edward Sanchez, Daniel Myrick, Gregg Hale


Synopsis: Nordic Noir turns frighteningly Flemish in Belgium’s top-grossing film of 2014 based on the serial-killer chiller by acclaimed British author Mo Hayder. Inspector Nick Cafmeyer (Geert Van Rampelberg) is haunted by the unsolved disappearance of his younger brother. A known sex offender was questioned but quickly released who now takes fiendish pleasure in tormenting Nick. Now another similar case comes to disturbing light involving a missing juvenile and Nick’s real nightmare begins…

Director: Hans Herbots Screenwriters: Mo Hayder, Carl Joos 125 mins Belgium 2014 (Subtitled)
Cast: Geert Van Rampelberg, Ina Geerts, Johan van Assche

21:30 [REC]: APOCALYPSE (UK Premiere)

Synopsis: Picking up the intense action immediately after [REC] 2 - expanding on the mythos from all three predecessors, plus referencing cult genre classics - TV reporter Ángela Vidal (Manuela Velasco) is extracted from the cursed apartment building and taken to a high-security quarantine facility aboard an oil tanker. There, in the bowels of the dark and desolate ship, Dr. Ricarte (Héctor Colomé) is experimenting with the infectious virus to find a cure before another living dead outbreak occurs.

Director: Jaume Balagueró Screenwriters: Jaume Balagueró and Manu Diez Spain 2014 96 mins
Cast: Manuela Velasco, Paco Manzenado, Héctor Colomé

23:30 THERE ARE MONSTERS (UK Premiere)
Synopsis: Monsters are taking over the world, slowly, quietly and efficiently, but you won’t see them coming until it’s far too late! Four film students embark on a road trip to obtain promotional interviews for their college. However en route they witness a series of odd events, strange behaviour, shocking actions and what seems to be surplus of twins. Their well-ordered universe literally changes before their camera lenses uncovering a terrifying secret lurking just under the seemingly calm urban landscape.

Director: Jay Dahl Screenwriter: Jay Dahl Canada 2014 96 mins
Cast: Matthew Amyotte, Jason Daley, Michael Ray Fox

10 December 2014

Silent Classics To Strictly Luhrmann: 2015 Glasgow Film Festival Announces First Events

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 Paul Merton paying live tribute to Buster Keaton. British Sea Power taking the O2 ABC back to its former cinematic history. Atmospheric new scorings of classic silent movies, a festival of internet cat videos, and a glitter-strewn homage to Baz Luhrmann in the grandiose surroundings of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.... sounds like February in Glasgow.

Glasgow Film Festival is delighted to announce that tickets are now available for the first six events from its 2015 programme. The festival has grown a reputation for unique screenings in unusual venues – pop-up cinema events that bring the film into 3D. Previous events include a mystery potholing expedition to watch The Descent in a cavern under Central Station, screenings of Jaws and Peter Pan on board Glasgow’s Tall Ship, and Tron screened in a mocked-up 1980s video game arcade.

In their 2015 programme, GFF will return to Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery for a very special live dance show and screening of Strictly Ballroom, and also take over the atmospheric, Gothic surroundings of Pollokshaws Burgh Hall, as composer Irene Buckley premieres a brand new soundtrack to 1928 classic The Fall of the House of Usher on the Hall’s original Wurlitzer Cinema Organ. Comedy legend Paul Merton and award-winning silent film pianist Neil Brand have teamed up to pay tribute to another legend, Buster Keaton, with a hilarious live show. GFF is delighted to host the Scottish premiere of British Sea Power’s hugely acclaimed film/live score project From The Sea To The Land Beyond. The band headline a night of supercool audio/visual treats, celebrating the O2 ABC’s origins as one of Glasgow’s oldest cinemas. The phenomenal French bassist Renaud Garcia-Fons and his live band create an Eastern-Western fusion score to Lotte Reiniger’s magical 1926 animation The Adventures of Prince Achmed, while GFF brings Walker Art Center’s famous Internet Cat Video Festival (purretty much does what it says on the tin) to the UK with a premiere at GoMA

Co-Director of Glasgow Film Festival,  Allan Hunter said:“Our special events are a large part of what makes Glasgow Film Festival distinctive: people love to experience cinema in new ways, and we’re lucky to have such a wealth of exciting venues available in the city. This is only the tip of the iceberg, too: we’re going to announce a different pop-up event for every night of the festival at our programme launch in January. The programming team have really let their imaginations run riot this year, so we think audiences will be pretty excited by what’s in store.”

Strictly Ballroom at Kelvin-Groove!
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Friday 20 February | 18.30 – 22.00 | £12/£10 | Tickets available from GFT Box Office

Well of course, you can dance any steps you like! But that doesn’t mean you’ll...WIN!

Following the success of 2014’s Monster Mash costume party and screening of Young Frankenstein, Glasgow Film Festival brings the glitz to Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum’s grand hall. As part of GFF’s Strewth! programme strand celebrating new and classic Australian cinema, audiences are encouraged to get their (Tina) sparkles on for a night of ritzy Aussie camp, wonderful dance and heart-thumping rhythm. Baz Luhrmann’s breakthrough feature, and the first of his Red Curtain Trilogy, Strictly Ballroom takes a tongue in cheek look inside the pressure-cooker world of competitive ballroom dancing, gleaming with fake tans and very real moves. The event combines a great film with a sequin-studded spectacular, as reigning Scottish Ballroom and Latin Dance Champions Tibor Poc and Hilary Mouat take to the floor ahead of the screening. And remember, a bit of musicality, please!

Part of the Strewth! strand celebrating Australian cinema

A Night at the Regal: Lost Map, Joe McAlinden, British Sea Power
Thursday 19 February, 18.00 (doors) | £16/£14.50 | Tickets available from O2 ABC

In May 1896, Glasgow’s ABC venue (then an ice-rink called Hubner’s Palace) was site of the first-ever public film screening in the city. It opened as a fully-fledged cinema in 1929, under the name The ABC Regal, as one of the most prominent picture-houses in town. It has since become one of Glasgow’s biggest and most exciting music venues.

The festival will take over the O2 ABC for one night, as a joint venture between the new Cinema City and Sound & Vision programme strands, celebrating the venue’s history with film and music. Lost Map Records artists eagleowl and Monoganon investigate the relationship between sound and the moving image; Jarman Award nominees Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard, directors of the recent Nick Cave documentary 20,000 Days on Earth (winner: Directing Award, Sundance Film Festival 2014/ BIFA 2014 Best Newcomer winners) bring a live performance of their new film EDIT, live scored by Joe McAlinden (formerly of the band Superstar). Headlining the event are those pioneers of the esoteric rock soundscape, British Sea Power, who will perform the Scottish premiere of their hugely acclaimed live score created around Penny Woolcock’s powerful documentary From the Sea to the Land Beyond, with screening. This perfect synchronicity of film and music, sound and vision, has won awards and acclaim at rare screenings since its 2012 premiere at Sheffield Doc Fest; GFF is delighted to bring it to Scotland. Part of the Cinema City and Sound & Vision strands.

The Fall of the House of Usher: a silent classic with live organ score
Pollokshaws Burgh Hall
Sunday 22 February | 20.00 - 22.00 | £12/£10 | Tickets available from GFT Box Office

Some silent films hold you outside: You admire them, but are aware of them as a phenomenon. With The Fall of the House of Usher, I barely stirred. A tone, an atmosphere, was created that actually worked...less a fiction than the realization of some phantasmagoric alternative reality.” – Roger Ebert

Based on Edgar Allan Poe’s jet-black short story, this 1928 film by French silent master Jean Epstein is the first true Gothic horror and an iconic visual masterpiece exploring the beauty and tension of life, love, and death. An ethereal new live score by composer Irene Buckley, featuring organ, electronics and live vocals, will be performed using the original Wurlitzer Cinema Organ in the historic, appropriate setting of Pollokshaws Burgh Hall to immerse the audience in a compelling meditation on the macabre. Buckley created the live soprano soundtrack to The Passion of Joan of Arc, which Glasgow Film Festival screened inside Glasgow Cathedral in 2013; the festival is delighted to welcome her back.Part of the Special Events strand

Buster Keaton Night with Paul Merton and Neil Brand
In partnership with Fruitmarket Nights: Classic Silent Movies
Old Fruitmarket
Monday 23 February, 19.30 | £14 (£12); £5 for under-26s | Tickets available from Glasgow Concert Halls and GFT Box Office

Paul Merton might never have become a comedian were it not for the influence of Buster Keaton: fabulous clown, unbelievably dauntless stunt man, matchless player/director. Merton and renowned silent film pianist Neil Brand are two of the most engaging and knowledgeable silent comedy buffs around, and together they present a fantastic evening of classic comedy, fascinating insights and facts and live music to celebrate one of the greatest funny men of all time.

The Adventures of Prince Achmed
In partnership with Fruitmarket Nights: Classic Silent Movies
Old Fruitmarket
Sunday 1 March, 18.30 | £14 (£12); £5 for under-26s | Tickets available from Glasgow Concert Halls and GFT Box Office

Lotte Reiniger’s classic silent film The Adventures of Prince Achmed inspires a remarkable East-West fusion from the phenomenal French bass player Renaud Garcia-Fons. Reiniger’s gorgeous silhouette animation tells stories from Arabian Nights, a world full of enchantments and danger, wizards, flying horses, evil genies, princes and princesses. Garcia-Fons and his live band draw on the musical traditions of the Mediterranean, taking sounds and ideas from Spain, Turkey, Morocco and Southern France, fusing them into an amazing new crossover score led by his own astounding playing. This event is suitable for all the family, but a special treat for lovers of silent film, fantasy, and brilliant world jazz. Part of the Sound & Vision and Modern Families strands

Cat Video Festival
Saturday 21 & Sunday 22 February, 13.00­–16.00| FREE (advance booking on EventBrite)

GoMA and Glasgow Film Festival are delighted to present the UK premiere of the Internet Cat Video Festival, brainchild of the prestigious Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. As the first offline, social celebration of online cat videos, the Internet Cat Video Festival has proved to be a massive hit with audiences of all ages, and is now coming to Scotland following its roaring (or should that be purring?) success across the pond. The festival is a free live event, featuring a programme specially curated by Will Braden, creator of the Henri Le Chat Noir videos and recipient of the first Golden Kitty (People’s Choice) Award. Accompanied with some extra feline-themed activities, the videos in the programme range from clips dating back to 1901, to brilliant animations and shorts featuring some more familiar feline faces, and everything in-between. Part of the Modern Families strand

The eleventh annual Glasgow Film Festival will run from 18 February until 1 March and as ever  Cinehouse  will do their best to be there. The full programme will be launched on the evening of Wednesday 21 January and will be online from Thursday 22 January, we hope to be at that launch so stay tuned for those details. The tickets will be  on sale from Monday 26 of January at 10am. Passes for FrightFest go on sale from 10am on Thursday 22 January.

Early Bird tickets, which offer vouchers for bundles of discounted tickets, and an opportunity to book tickets early on Friday 23 January, are available now until 4 January, priced at 10 films for £50, 20 films for £90 and 40 films for £160. See full information.