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    Weird Poster, Eerie Stills: Ben Wheatley’s Fantastic “A FIELD IN ENGLAND”

    Ben Wheatley’s latest, the thrilling, overwhelming and very, very strange A FIELD IN ENGLAND is almost upon us. In building anticipation for this singular picture, Drafthouse Films has teamed with frequent collaborator Jay Shaw on a secnd, brand new, even more intense poster, one that both gets to the heart of the film’s surreal elements and references its creepiest scene, of which you can also preview in some new stills.

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    “FAULTS”, Dick Miller and “TEXAS CHAIN SAW” Lead Genre in First SXSW Lineup Announcement

    Sundance has wrapped, the next major U.S. Film Festival is gearing up and true to trend, it seems all of the genre and all of the weird can’t be confined to a singular midnight section. In anticipation of the Midnighters announcement to come, take a look at the first wave of horror within SXSW 2014, which includes Riley Stearns’ feature debut, a documentary on legendary character actor Dick Miller, highly anticipated new films from Alejandro Jodorowsky and Nacho Vigalondo and celebrations of towering classics GODZILLA and THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE.

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    Blumhouse Producing “HOME” from “LAST HOUSE” director

    While unquestionably a hit maker, producer Jason Blum and his Blumhouse Productions must also be lauded for their eye in working with very neat genre filmmakers. Hopefully this is the year we’ll finally see their collaboration with THE STRANGERS director Bryan Bertino, and now Blumhouse is backing HOME, a new film from Dennis Iliadis, the director who helmed THE LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT remake and last year’s very cool pop-art party horror PLUS ONE. 

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  • First Look: Christopher Denham’s “PRESERVATION”

    While sales news (often confused with distribution announcements) is rarely interesting in general, sometimes it gives us the first look at a very exciting project. Example: PRESERVATION, the new film from actor/filmmaker Christopher Denham, who starred in the fantastic SOUND OF MY VOICE, as well as wrote and directed the undervalued and possibly eeriest of contemporary found footage films, HOME MOVIE. XYZ Films, the production company and sales agency behind the likes of THE RAID 2, SPRING (from RESOLUTION directors Benson & Moorhead) and much more have taken world sales rights for PRESERVATION in anticipation of the upcoming European Film Market and an early glimpse, as well as synopsis on the movie is out.

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    “DEAD SNOW; RED VS. DEAD” (Sundance Movie Review)

    Fake it till you make it; whether you put any stock in the old adage or not, it seems to have worked wonders for Norwegian filmmaker, Tommy Wirkola. Having broken through with a film based on a great concept that rarely results in something great (Nazi Zombies), Wirkola had cultivated a true fanbase. Still, and without discounting the undoubtedly hard work that goes into crafting a feature film, the director received much (justified) criticism for over-relying on stylistic influence and homage, particularly to the comedic horror of Sam Raimi and early Peter Jackson. In the intervening five years however—which saw him hit Hollywood with the goofy good time HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS—the filmmaker seems to have honed his horror-comedy craft, developing his own style, confronting his past shortcomings and delivering a film both worthy of its base idea and a packed house.

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    “A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT” (Sundance Movie Review)

    In Bad City, evil is relative. The fictional Iranian town, which exists only in a dreamy, anamorphic black-and-white, houses a small population which runs the spectrum of its namesake quality. And who’s to say who is worse than anyone else? Writer/director Ana Lily Amirpour is. Is a sleazy, coked-up, aggressive pimp any more terrible than who he employs? Is the silent vampire stalking the streets any less terrible because we love her?  Well, yes, but not in light of their actions. In A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT, the embodiment of evil is lack of connection.

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    “WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS” (Sundance Movie Review)

    Is it the cyclical nature of things that’s responsible for one of our most overexposed monsters to return in two revelatory films at 2014’s Sundance? Jim Jarmusch’s ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE finds almost everything vampires have embodied in cinema in a lyrical, self-aware hangout led by two of our most poetic and appropriately vampiric actors, Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton. Meanwhile, Taika Waititi and Jermaine Clement’s brilliantly comedic WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS also encompasses most everything considered a vampire archetype, but in what’s easily one of the funniest horror-comedies in ages. Where plenty of morose vampires have contemplated their endless existence, these four bloodsucking flatmates in New Zealand attempt to keep up with it all, and give the viewer a gory, goofy time doing so.

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    “THE VOICES” (Sundance Movie Review)

    What’s the worst thing you’ve ever laughed at? It’s doubtful that THE VOICES tops it sure, but Marjane Satrapi’s film is playing with a similar sentiment in its pop-color focus on a mentally imbalanced man (Ryan Reynolds) spurred to kill by his talking cat. Awash with pink factory machinery, bright yellow windbreakers, chatty severed heads and cheery disposition utterly twisting the grim, gruesome content out of whack, THE VOICES is surely not for everyone. Those with a predilection for a little prodding outside their comfort zone and a willingness to chuckle at some terrible things will likely find it a tasteless, special little exercise.

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    Haunted Mirror and Eeerie Imagery Tease “OCULUS”

    Thanks to a fantastic response from last year’s TIFF, and of course the unsettling ABSENTIA, Mike Flanagan’s OCULUS is one of the most eagerly anticipated horror films of the year. Hitting this April, the tease has begun, and our first glimpse bears a storybook resemblance, introducing the viewer to the legend of this accursed artifact that haunts the film.

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    “THE RAID 2″ (Sundance Movie Review)

    It’s unlikely there exists a 2014 movie with more spectacular bloodshed than THE RAID 2. Of course, that statement is a nightmare to those of a queasy nature, or with little constitution for ultraviolence. But anyone fearful THE RAID itself could not be topped, or that its sequel ballooning to a 147-minute runtime would do it a disservice, should begin to feel something in their shoulders. Not hype per se, but more like the thrilling anticipation that permeates the entire movie, as if gearing up to do something truly heart-pounding. As if the movie itself is an opponent. As if you’re waiting for its first punch. You’ll never see it coming, nor the second, or third, or the hammer, or the bat. THE RAID 2 forces its viewer to feel it all, leaving us bruised, exhausted and elated.

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