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    Q&A: Frank Pavich and the tale of “JODOROWSKY’S DUNE”

    Cinema is full of devastating stories of films unfinished, abandoned or stolen. One of the most mythical of these is Alejandro Jodorowsky’s follow-up to his magical cult classics EL TOPO and THE HOLY MOUNTAIN, a proposed adaptation of Frank Herbert’s 1965 science fiction novel, DUNE. The film was deep in pre-production in the mid-70s when financing fell apart, and boasted a crazy attached cast including Orson Welles, Salvador Dali, Mick Jagger, Gloria Swanson and David Carradine, production design by HR Giger and Jean “Moebius” Giraud, visual FX by Dan O’Bannon, and music by Magma and Pink Floyd. One can only imagine the stunning, mystical epic this would have been.

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    [Night Visions ’13] AJ Annila talks “WE ARE WHAT WE ARE” Prequel, “NUMBER 13″ & More

    As we recently noted in our report on Helsinki’s Night Visions Festival (see our report here and their list of prizewinners here), genre film production is ramping up in Finland in recent years. One of the directors leading the charge is Anti-Jussi Annila (AJ Annila) whose JADE WARRIOR (2006) – a Wuxia-infused take on Finland’s Kalevala epic – and gruesome, pitch-black period horror SAUNA (2008) established him as a filmmaker with a grand-scale, visionary approach to the genre.

    Aside from prepping a spring shoot for the WE ARE WHAT WE ARE prequel WHAT WE WERE, Annila is at the AFM this week pitching his admitted “dream project” NUMBER 13 (formerly called HUMAN) and is also in development on a third Scandinavian crime thriller, DON’T COME AFTER ME. Here FANGO talks to Annila about what the immediate future has in store for fans of Nordic horror.

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    Five Reasons Helsinki’s Night Visions Needs to be on Your Festival Calendar

    Helsinki is probably best known to cult film fans for the Kaurismäki brothers, or perhaps from the final (and best) segment of Jim Jarmusch’s 1991 anthology NIGHT ON EARTH. Indeed, Finnish cult films are few and far between, although a recent surge in the form of AJ Annila’s SAUNA (2008), Jalmari Helander’s RARE EXPORTS (2010) and Timo Vuorensola’s IRON SKY (2012)[i] has provided the impetus for more genre film production in the region—for fans seeking older examples, check out the original classic THE WHITE REINDEER (1952), Olli Soinio’s MOONLIGHT SONATA (1988), and a double bill of Auli Mantila with THE COLLECTOR (1997) and THE GEOGRAPHY OF FEAR (2000). Central to this burgeoning film scene is Helsinki’s Night Visions Festival, founded in 1997 originally as a single all-night event, but since expanded to four days in October with a mirroring event in the spring. For many festival vets, this marathon is the backbone of the event—it’s where the bulk of the retro titles feature in the lineup—but all screenings are well-attended, if not playing to sold-out houses.

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    Exclusive British Horror Mixtape!

    As we gear up for our presentation of Beyond Fest’s ‘British Invasion’ night of new British horror featuring Ben Wheatley’s A FIELD IN ENGLAND and Elliot Goldner’s THE BORDERLANDS on October 18th in Los Angeles (more details on the festival website HERE), we made this awesome mixtape (if I may say so myself) with selections ranging from THE WICKER MAN to BERBERIAN SOUND STUDIO and everything in between, to give you a bit of British flavour in anticipation. Please listen and share!

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    “BLUE RUIN” (TIFF Movie Review)

    It’s been a long six years since BLUE RUIN director Jeremy Saulnier graced the pages of FANGORIA (virtual or otherwise); back in 2007 his riotous horror comedy MURDER PARTY was a hit among the FANGO enclave, starring Macon Blair as a nerdy loner whose invitation to a Halloween “Murder Party” turns out to be more literal than expected. In the interim Saulnier’s made a name for himself as a cinematographer, most notably for the dreamy dramas of Matthew Porterfield (PUTTY HILL), and now he returns to the director’s seat, with frequent collaborator Macon Blair turning in a transfixing performance as BLUE RUIN’s damaged lead, Dwight.

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    “CANNIBAL” (TIFF Movie Review)

    There are moments of exquisite stillness in Manuel Martin Cuenca’s CANNIBAL. Some might say too many. But for those willing to go along with its deliberately tentative pacing, CANNIBAL  delivers a poignant – if not always totally gripping -minimalist narrative about a man who eats people and the woman who loves him.

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    “PROXY” (TIFF Movie Review)

    Ready-to-pop pregnant Esther Woodhouse (Alexia Rasmussen, pictured above) is walking home from an obstetrician’s appointment when she’s brutally attacked in the street by a hooded stranger. It is a harsh and surprisingly graphic opening—one likely to have some movie patrons running for the door—but marks only the beginning of the pitch-black psychosexual terrain to be explored in Zack Parker’s fourth feature, PROXY.

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    “BORGMAN” (TIFF Movie Review)

    Dutch filmmaker Alex Van Warmerdam’s modern-day mythical black comedy BORGMAN was scooped up amidst much Cannes buzz by Drafthouse films earlier this year and just made its North American debut at TIFF, where Fango caught it yesterday. A strange and feisty film whose horror affiliations are more existential than overt, BORGMAN is about a handful of divine shit-disturbers, led by the title character, who turn the life of a suburban couple upside down.

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    EXPOSED: JOE SWANBERG on neo-late nite thriller 24 EXPOSURES

    Prolific actor-director Joe Swanberg has a whirlwind autumn ahead.  With the summer-long media blitz and theatrical release of Adam Wingard’s YOU’RE NEXT this past weekend alongside the arthouse roll-out of his own rom-com DRINKING BUDDIES, two upcoming films at the Toronto International Film Festival (Ti West’s THE SACRAMENT and Zack Parker’s mind-blowing PROXY), and coming off the World Premiere of his genre-bender 24 EXPOSURES as part of Montreal’s Fantasia Film Festival, Swanberg’s evolving streak in the indie film world is starting to pay off in a major way.

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