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    “AMERICAN MARY” (Movie Review)

    [This review was initially published in September 2012, it is reposted below in light of the film's theatrical and VOD release.]

    Full Disclosure: This writer was not a fan of the Twisted Twins’ maiden cinematic voyage, DEAD HOOKER IN A TRUNK. Made on a budget by Vancouver’s Jen and Sylvia Soska, the cheapie action comedy is scrappy and full of indie energy but is also shrill, choked with gratuitous, numbing profanity and–outside of the twins themselves—generally poor performances. But what did appeal was the maverick way the sisters managed to push their product using social media, forums and general upbeat fan-friendly enthusiasm to build a legacy as not only burgeoning filmmakers, but masters of entrepreneurial business sense, whipping up a mass frenzy about their next project, something called AMERICAN MARY….

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    “BLACK SABBATH” (Blu-ray Review, Arrow Films)

    Anthology horror films are a tricky beast to pull off and more often remembered for their inconsistency than anything else. Normally only about half of the shorts in an anthology are strong if you’re lucky, although there are a few exceptions. The big one is Mario Bava’s BLACK SABBATH, a strong contender for the director’s finest outing combining everything the filmmaker did right in his early 60s groundbreaking days and tossing in one of the great late Boris Karloff performances for good measure. Sadly, the movie has never been particularly easy to track down, constantly going in and out of print and available in two distinct cuts that are surprisingly different. Well, the good news is that the good folks at Arrow Films narrowed their laser sights onto BLACK SABBATH as part of their current commitment to bring Bava to HD, and now all may drool over the disc in horror geek delight. Given that the film is not only one of the maestro’s best, but one of his prettiest “horror in Technicolor” achievements, this disc is practically guaranteed to make eyeballs bleed in the best possible sense.

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    Montreal ComicCon’s Horrorfest film submissions are open!

    The Montreal HorrorFest, a film festival and convention taking place within Montreal ComicCon, gets underway September 13-15 and is looking for submissions! Last year, the fest screened 19 features and 31 shorts including acclaimed zombie indie MIMESIS and the Debbie Rochon-starring BILLY’S CULT. To give it a shot, head to the submissions page here and keep an eye on Fango for more announcements from the event soon!

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    It’s hip to be scared at the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival

    Horror filmmaking has been tied to the independent scene since the birth of the cinematic genre, as renegade filmmaking and subversive storytelling often beget imaginative and frightening results. Therefore, one should not be surprised by the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival embracing The Dark Side, a one-night-only event showcasing the macabre and malevolent by Brooklyn-based independent filmmakers, which will also feature an industry panel hosted by FANGORIA editor emeritus Tony Timpone. The Dark Side will begin at 7:30 p.m. this Thursday, May 16 at the Tuohy Hall Auditorium (located in St. Joseph’s College, 245 Clinton Avenue in Brooklyn).

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