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    “SEPTIC MAN” (Fantastic Fest Movie Review)

    Can something with as outlandish a plot as SEPTIC MAN—one seemingly conceived in Tromaville—make an attempt at being meditative?  I’d argue yes, of course. It’s an artist’s prerogative how they’d like to present their story, and if writer Tony Burgess and director Jesse Thomas Cook saw something mellow, or melancholy, in a man covered in shit, it’s up to the audience to tune in to their fecal frequency. Does a subsequent distaste then seem worse, however, if their unexpected take misses the mark? It may be more ambitious, but is it somehow more trying than if they simply filmed a wannabe cult retread? Absolutely.

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    “PATRICK” (Fantastic Fest Movie Review)

    The suspenseful opening sequence of Mark Hartley’s narrative debut, PATRICK, deals in a time honored thriller trope. A nurse, dangerously sneaking through pitch black halls and seemingly aiming to uncover something secret, uses her camera flash to help her see. It’s a device that’s perhaps most iconic in Hitchcock’s REAR WINDOW, but has been utilized in countless films since. It’s certainly not employed to poor effect here, and once the opening titles reveal a score from Pino Donaggio and the film itself is decorated by gothic interiors (not dissimilar from the medical estate in Aussie great NEXT OF KIN) and vintage nurse uniforms, it’s immediately endearing what the filmmaker is striving toward.

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    The Most Anticipated Films of Fantastic Fest ’13

    Fantastic Fest is upon us. For many not attending, the idea of calling it “the best festival experience I have each year,” isn’t exactly detailed or specific. There’s little other way to describe it however. A contained, communal celebration of genre and all the out-there concepts such a little word can entail, Fantastic Fest is full of anticipation and discovery and like the best fests, you often leave with your favorite film the one you least expected and most especially, had never heard of.

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    First Poster: “WER”, Lycan film from “DEVIL INSIDE” director

    Just earlier, I rewatched Sofia Coppola’s still-wonderful THE VIRGIN SUICIDES. My biggest takeaway, coincidentally to what’s below, was asking what became of A.J. Cook. With little screentime, the actress was totally transfixing as Mary Lisbon and it’s nice to see her pop up in the news and on this poster for the upcoming werewolf film from William Brent Bill, the filmmaker behind last year’s found footage THE DEVIL INSIDE.

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    “THE COLONY” (Movie Review)

    THE COLONY should, first and foremost, make the vast majority of its audience feel much better about their own lives and choices. Sure, we’ve all made mistakes, some worse than others, but one presumes vanishingly few of us have ever committed a faux pas on par with designing and building “weather modification towers” to combat global warming and—whoops!—accidentally plunging the world into an era of permafrost and endless snow blindness. 

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