The final day of FrightFest is always a melancholy affair. Like the end of any holiday, you hate to see it coming to an end. You’ve had a great time and drunk your body weight several times over and eaten more rubbish food than you realised it was possible to put away, but it’s got to come to an end. At the same time, after five days away from home, my wife, my kid, my dog and my bed I can’t wait to get back.
But let’s not rush this day away. Monday is my most anticipated of the days when it comes to films. A lineup that has had me excited since it was announced has finally arrived and I’m very much looking forward to it.
For We Are Many – World Premiere
Portmanteau, or anthology, horror hasn’t always been my thing. The genre can have real, quite extreme, ups and downs. Think, The ABCs of Death for a good example. For We Are Many intrigued me with its premise; essentially tasking 13 filmmakers with coming up with a short film based on any demon of their choice.
Wrapped around by the story of a king making a bargain to save his crown, For We Are Many was wholly entertaining for its hour and a half, a handful of stand out segments but nothing so bad that the better clips needed to help elevate them – a rarity in anthology horror. The film brought together and showed off a global team effort with some wonderfully diverse ideas. A great way to start the day.
READ MORE: Memory: The Origins of Alien – Documentary Review
Satanic Panic – UK Premiere
Back to Cineworld for my first film in the main screen for the day. Satanic Panic is a tongue-in-cheek stylised horror that sees a young girl caught up in a satanic ritual in a posh neighbourhood she delivers pizza to.
This was good. Not great, but good. I expected a little more from the premise and the tone of it had the feel of a comedy – it felt like the hilarious Deathgasm – but someone missed the jokes. It’s not a deal breaker at all, but it was quite jarring. An enjoyable time though, and the second time this weekend that a kid being punched square in the face has brought big laughs.
There may be something wrong with us as a group.
The Perished – World Premiere
One of my most anticipated of the weekend didn’t disappoint. The tale of a young woman in Ireland who has to deal with this physical and mental trauma not just of the abortion she has had, but how people view her now because of it was never going to be a fun film.
But what The Perished is, is a heartfelt look at how the world can feel like it’s turned against you at the slightest push towards the taboo. The Perished has high aspirations to be a conversation starter around these stigmas, and in that regard it stamps its foot and waves its flag to get your attention before it leaves you a pit-of-the-stomach feeling that’s hard to shake off. It’s bleak, it’s brilliant, it has a gorgeous Clive Barker-esque creature in it, and I can’t wait to see it do well everywhere else.
READ MORE: Angel Has Fallen – Review
Rabid – World Premiere
Jen and Sylvia Soska have been out of the limelight a little bit since their breakout hit American Mary. Working as guns-for-hire on projects that might not be their first passion, they have returned to FrightFest with a love letter to David Cronenberg, the man that helped pave the way for their particular brand of horror.
Fitting that it is a Cronenberg remake they have brought to the festival this time.
A dark look at the superficial nature of people, and what they’ll do to get or keep their beauty turns into a gore filled nightmare spattered with blood and Cronenberg references. Amazing, gross effects are the highlight of a film that shines a spotlight on the world that needs the MeToo movement and asks why nothing has really changed. The Twisted Twins delivered a brilliant film and FrightFest was the perfect place for it.
That’s FrightFest done for another year, Halloween isn’t that far away though so getting a fix will be quick and simple I reckon. I can’t wait for Glasgow; I can’t wait for next year. FrightFest quickly becomes about the people you’re spending time with as much as the films and this year has been one of the best ones.
As is obligatory, my top five films of this year are – at least as I write this:
- Ready or Not
- Ghost Killers vs Bloody Mary
- The Perished
All of which should be hunted out as soon as possible. As should most of what I’ve seen this weekend.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to see if I can drain the hotel bar of coffee, go home, and start the task of catching up on the films I missed this weekend.
Until next time…
You can catch up on our coverage of FrightFest – reviews and diaries – here.