‘THIS REALLY HAPPENED’ (Tribeca 2024) The delirious dating dilemma is REALLY that good

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THIS REALLY HAPPENED

This Really Happened

NOW PROGRAM 
WORLD PREMIERE

This hilariously relatable and immersive short captures the nightmare that dating has become with an added element of surprise. In the Tribeca 2024 short film, THIS REALLY HAPPENED, Kate and Zoe break the 4th wall in one giant fantasy retelling of their unfortunately shared experience.

Abubakr Ali is effortlessly charming as Boy. His authentic interest and quirky, but completely believable, delivery of the dialogue make him a star. His chemistry with AbiAssi and Prosterman is magnetic.

Speaking of our leading ladies, Kallen Prosterman‘s portrayal of Kate fits every characteristic of an actor in NYC. I should know. I too attended a “fancy theatre school.” Olivia AbiAssi plays her brilliant foil in Zoe. Her self-deprecating stand-up routine perfectly captures her personality. It only makes sense that they write the script and play themselves. It is entirely lived-in viewing.

THIS REALLY HAPPENED has all the potential for a spectacular series. It begs for your attention. Director Emily Cohn deserves notice for helming their hilarity. This team of women earns your eyes and time in a slew of great Tribeca 2024 shorts programming. I’m looking at you Tribeca Creators Market. You’ve got potential gold in this one.

27 MINUTES | English | 2024 | NOT RATED

Cast & Credits:
Director: Emily Cohn
Project Creator: Olivia AbiAssi & Kallen Prosterman
Producer: Olivia AbiAssi, Kallen Prosterman, Emily Cohn & Allison Joy Gale
Screenwriter: Olivia AbiAssi & Kallen Prosterman
Cinematographer: Alexander Roque Petersen
Editor: Kate Pedatella

Based on a true story, Kate and Zoe, two young creatives in the throes of new love, have discovered they’ve been dating the same person: “BOY.” Determined to produce some kind of brilliant revenge project, they recount their experiences in filmed interviews and fantastical flashbacks full of (literal) red flags. But will this process turn out to be more cathartic or soul-crushing?

Remaining Screenings of THIS REALLY HAPPENED:

TRIBECA 2024: A lineup that wows.

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Tribeca 2024 is pulling no punches this year. Comedy, Immersives, Documentaries, and (our pet favorite) the weirdness that is the Midnight Section. Celebrities and fresh faces collide in a festival that will please the harshest critic and most serious cinephile. Welcome to TRIBECA 2024. Here are just a few of the films on our radar this year.
 

#AMFAD: ALL MY FRIENDS ARE DEAD

 

https://tribecafilm.com/films/amfad-all-my-friends-are-dead-2024

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Escape from Tribeca
 
Director: Marcus Dunstan
Screenwriters: Josh Sims, Jessica Sarah Flaum

Cast: Jade Pettyjohn, Jojo Siwa, Jennifer Ens, Ali Fumiko Whitney, Michaella Russell, Julian Haig, Justin Derickson, Cardi Wong, Jack Doupe-Smith

 
In #AMFAD: ALL MY FRIENDS ARE DEAD, a group of college friends rent an Airbnb for the biggest music festival of the year. A weekend of partying quickly takes a turn, as the group is murdered one by one, according to their sin.
 
 
Get ready for homage frights and influencer culture in one bloody battle. It will be a genre highlight.
 
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International Narrative Competition

Written & Directed by Ana Guevara, Leticia Jorge

Deeply affected by Elena’s death, Adela travels in time to a recent autumn, where her friend awaits her ready to binge on detective novels next to the crackling fireplace. A tale about timeless sorority.
 
A beautiful and ceaselessly creative meditation on grief and love.
 
Sat June 08 – 6:15 PM
 Village East by Angelika
 
 

JUMPMAN

https://tribecafilm.com/films/jumpman-2024

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WORLD PREMIERE – SHORTS


Written & Directed by: Tom Dey

Synopsis: The story of the photographer who created the 1984 LIFE portrait of Michael Jordan that was copied by Nike and turned into one of the world’s most famous logos.

 


THE DEVIL’S BATH

https://tribecafilm.com/films/devil-s-bath-2024

DEVIL_S_BATH

Midnight

Directed by Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala

Screenwriter Severin Fiala, Veronika Franz

Cinematographer Martin Gschlacht

Editor Michael Palm

Cast: Anja Plaschg, Maria Hofstätter, David Scheid

In 18th century Austria, Agnes (Anja Plaschg) embarks on a new life as she marries her beloved Wolf (David Scheid). However, her hopes for marital bliss are quickly shattered by a controlling mother-in-law and her husband’s apparent disinterest in her. As Agnes struggles with the isolation and despair of her unfulfilling existence, she descends down a dark and disturbing path that leads her to contemplate the unthinkable. 

You are not ready for this truth-inspired story of patriarchal and cultural oppression. Hold onto your hats.


MISSING FROM FIRE TRAIL ROAD

https://tribecafilm.com/films/missing-from-fire-trail-road-2024

MISSING FROM FIRE TRAIL Tribeca 2024

World Premiere: Spotlight Documentary Section

Director: Sabrina Van Tassel

SYNOPSIS: 

Mary Ellen Johnson- Davis disappeared over two years ago from the Tulalip Indian reservation near Seattle. Because the investigation is at standstill, her sisters and other tribal members set off to discover what happened to her. Their quest uncovers a harsh reality: indigenous women are murdered at an alarming rate. Complex tribal jurisdictional issues have turned reservations into lawless zones and hunting grounds for predators. Most crimes go unsolved and are committed by non-natives. But this crisis has historical roots and emanates from the genocide created by institutional policies to eradicate an entire culture.  This film sheds light on the weight of generational trauma and discrimination that indigenous women continue to face.

An urgent doc that tackles injustice and power struggles that will resonate far beyond the reservation borders. Check out the trailer below:


RESTLESS

https://tribecafilm.com/films/restless-2024

Tribeca 2024 Restless

WORLD PREMIERE – VIEWPOINTS

Written & Directed by: Jed Hart

Starring: Lyndsey Marshal, Aston McAuley, Barry Ward, Kate Robbins, Denzel Baidoo, and Ciara Ford



Synopsis:

The quiet life of an empty nester is turned upside down in the blink of an eye when hard-partying — and potentially dangerous — new neighbors move in next door.

 


THE FRENCH ITALIAN 
https://tribecafilm.com/films/french-italian-2024
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World Premiere – US Narrative Competition 

 
Directed by: Rachel Wolther
Produced by: Miranda Kahn
Executive Produced by: Allison Rose Carter, Jon Read, Chris McConnell, Ross Davidson Burlingame, Donna Rosen, Christopher Zebuda, Murray and Lori Shapero
Starring: Catherine Cohen, Aristotle Athari, Chloe Cherry, Ruby McCollister, Jon Rudnitsky, and Ikechukwu Ufomadu
 
THE FRENCH ITALIAN follows an aggrieved NYC couple (Cat Cohen & Aristotle Athari), who stage a fake play to get revenge on their noisy neighbors (Chloe Cherry & Jon Rudnitsky).

The cast alone should have you yelling, ‘Take my money!”

 


DARKEST MIRIAM

https://tribecafilm.com/films/darkest-miriam-2024

VIEWPOINTS

Director: Naomi Jaye

Miriam is a librarian working in an out of the way branch of the Toronto Public Library. Working among the marginalized eccentrics and cranks that frequent her branch, she is trudging through her life shrouded in a fog of grief. To add weirdness to sadness, she keeps finding vaguely threatening letters throughout the library that seem to be addressed to her and the world at large, but mostly to her. While puzzling over this mystery, Miriam meets Janko, a younger foreign cab driver. When they start a love affair Miriam starts to feel her fog lift. But the question remains: what is the deal with those letters? 

This spirited and enigmatic film is a star vehicle for Britt Lower


LAKE GEORGE
https://tribecafilm.com/films/lake-george-2024

Tribeca 2024 LAKE_GEORGE-Clean-16x9-01 World Premiere – Spotlight Narrative


Directed by: Jeffrey Reiner
Produced by: Jeffrey Reiner, Joey Oglesby, Cleta Ellington, Bernie Stern
Starring: Shea Whigham, Carrie Coon, Glenn Fleshler, Max Casella
 
A darkly comedic neo-noir, a road trip movie, and a redemption story. Newly released from prison, a white-collar criminal, used to dealing with numbers, is tasked with one last job by his boss: kill the boss’ girlfriend before she talks.

 

 


MARS
https://tribecafilm.com/films/mars-2024

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Midnight Section

 
Directed & Produced by Sevan Najarian
Written & Produced by Trevor Moore, Zach Cregger & Sam Brown
Produced by Kara Welker
Executive Produced by James Bristow, Darren Trumeter & Timmy Williams
Starring: The Whitest Kids U’ Know

 
Kyle is a man whose whole life is laid out before him. Engaged to his fiancé, Candace, he works as a dentist,  knows that they’ll settle down and have children, and all of life’s decisions have already been figured out for him… and that is terrifying. One night, he sees an ad for billionaire Elron Branson’s contest to travel to Mars on the maiden trip of his new MARS VOYAGER.  Unsure of the road ahead, Kyle sends in a submission video and,  to his surprise, wins. When the dates of the rocket launch and wedding conflict, he decides to ditch his big day and head off to the red planet. This would all be great for him except the luxury accommodations are merely a facade, the other space travelers are insane, and all the space travelers get stranded on Mars with no way home.

More adult animation in the world!

 


VULCANIZADORA

http://tribecafilm.com/films/vulcanizadora-2024

VULCANIZADORA

US Narrative Competition

Cast: Joel Potrykus, Joshua Burge, Bill Vincent, Solo Potrykus
Writer/Director: Joel Potrykus

Synopsis: Two friends, Marty and Derek, trudge through a Michigan forest with the intention of following through on a disturbing pact. After they fail, one of them must return home to deal with the legal and emotional repercussions.

If you don’t already know the team of Joel Potrykus and Joshua Burge, get ready to enter The Twilight Zone and your newest indie filmmaker obsession. 


THE SHALLOW TALE OF A WRITER WHO DECIDED TO WRITE ABOUT A SERIAL KILLER

https://tribecafilm.com/films/shallow-tale-of-a-writer-who-decided-to-write-about-a-serial-killer-2024

SHALLOW TALE World Premiere – Spotlight Narrative

Written and Directed by: Tolga Karaçelik

Starring: Steve Buscemi, John Magaro, and Britt Lower 
 

A struggling writer in the midst of a divorce befriends a retired serial killer who incidentally becomes his marriage counselor by day, and killing counselor for his next book by night.

Tolga Karaçelik’s English-language debut and this cast? Do Not Miss This.


TREASURE  International Premiere – Spotlight Narrative

https://tribecafilm.com/films/treasure-2024

Tribeca 2024 TREASURE-Clean-16x9-01 Based on the 1999 novel Too Many Men by Lily Brett
 
Directed by: Julia von Heinz
Co-Written by: Julia von Heinz, John Quester
Produced by: Fabina Gasmia, Julia von Heinz, Lena Dunham
Starring: Lena Dunham, Stephen Fry, Zbigniew Zamachowski, Iwona Bielska, Maria Mamona, Wenanty Nosul, Klara Bielawka, Magdalena Celowna, Tomasz Wlosok, Sandra Drzymalska


A father-daughter road trip set in 1990s Poland, TREASURE follows Ruth (Dunham), an American music journalist, and her father, Edek (Fry), a charmingly stubborn Holocaust survivor, on a journey to his homeland. While Ruth is eager to make sense of her family’s past, Edek embarks on the trip with his own agenda. This emotional, funny culture clash of two New Yorkers exploring post-socialist Poland is a powerful example of how reconnecting with family and the past can be an unexpected treasure.

 

 


WITCHES

https://tribecafilm.com/films/witches-2024

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Viewpoints

Director: Elizabeth Sankey

Following up her acclaimed 2019 documentary Romantic Comedy, filmmaker Elizabeth Sankey turns her attention to another genre of cinematic depiction of particular interest to women: the witch. How have witches been characterized and shown across the history of film, television, and culture? How has this representation changed and evolved? And most importantly, what is going on just beneath the surface?

You had me at the title.


THE A-FRAME
https://tribecafilm.com/films/a-frame-2024
Tribeca 2024 The A-Frame**WORLD PREMIERE**
MIDNIGHT

WRITER/DIRECTOR: Calvin Lee Reeder
CAST: Johnny Whitworth, Dana Namerode, Nik Dodani, Laketa Caston


Synopsis: A quantum physicist develops a machine that creates a tunnel to a sub-atomic parallel universe. In his quest to prove the machine’s efficacy, he inadvertently discovers an unorthodox cancer treatment when transporting lab rats inter-dimensionally. He now recruits human subjects to legitimize his efforts.

Johnny Whitworth is an icon, so if he’s on my screen, my eyes are glued to it.

 

Tribeca 2024, presented by OKX, today unveiled its features lineup, offering a diverse array of narrative, documentary, and animated films. Scheduled to run from June 5-16 in New York City, this year’s Festival promises a thoughtfully curated program and includes everything from timely documentaries addressing political and social concerns to independent narratives showcasing award-winning actors. Additionally, the opening night event, presented in partnership with OKX and City National Bank, was announced.

Tribeca kicks off on Wednesday, June 5 with the world premiere of Diane von Furstenberg: Woman in Charge, an intimate look at the life of the fashion designer and cultural luminary. The film captures Diane von Furstenberg’s impact as a creative icon, who challenged the status quo with the bold inquiry, “Why shouldn’t a woman do what a man can do?” Directed by Tribeca alumni Trish Dalton and Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, Woman in Charge opens the lineup of features.

The 2024 selection of feature films includes Jazzy with Lily GladstoneDaddio starring Dakota Johnson and Sean PennFirebrand starring Alicia Vikander and Jude LawBRATS, directed by Andrew McCarthy, with Demi MooreAlly SheedyRob LoweMolly Ringwald, and Lea ThompsonSacramento, directed by Michael Angarano, starring Michael CeraKristen Stewart, and Maya ErskineWinter Spring Summer or Fall starring Jenna Ortega and Percy Hynes White; and Liza: A Truly Terrific Absolutely True Story with Liza Minnelli. Comedic stars are in Group Therapy, including Neil Patrick HarrisMike Birbiglia, and Tig NotaroAll That We Love stars Margaret Cho and Jesse Tyler Ferguson; and Outstanding: A Comedy Revolution features Lily TomlinWanda SykesRosie O’DonnellHannah Gadsby, and Joel Kim Booster

Music documentaries highlight the boldest voices of each generation with They All Came Out To Montreux with PrinceStingCarlos SantanaAretha Franklin, and Keith RichardsSatisfied about Renée Elise GoldsberryLinda Perry: Let It Die Here with Linda PerryDolly PartonBrandi Carlile, and Christina Aguilera; and Avicii – I’m Tim with Tim “Avicii” BerglingChris Martin and David Guetta. Renée Elise Goldsberry and Linda Perry will be performing following the world premiere of their respective films. 

“Each year, the Tribeca Festival reflects our culture, capturing the essence of the present moment. We’re thrilled to showcase our 23rd edition, delving into captivating explorations of artificial intelligence with Demis Hassabis, thought-provoking discussions on the future of democracy, and so much more,” Tribeca Co-Founder and CEO Jane Rosenthal. “Storytelling possesses a remarkable ability to bring us together, offering hope in these challenging times. We eagerly anticipate engaging with audiences on difficult yet timely subjects.”

The 23rd edition of Tribeca reflects our activist roots, to showcase a slate of films that speak to today’s political moment and inform voters ahead of the upcoming election. Hacking Hate, directed by Simon Klose, questions the role of social media in amplifying hate speech and extremism. McVeigh, directed by Mike Ott, portrays right-wing extremism with chilling modern implications. America’s Burning, directed by David Smick and narrated by Michael Douglas, dives into the economic root of hate and division.

At the core of our mission is the belief that art can spark change, particularly in the aftermath of global conflicts. The Cranes Call, directed by Laura Warner, spotlights war crimes investigators for the Clooney Foundation for Justice, led by Amal and George Clooney, as they risk their lives traveling across Ukraine to build cases against Russian soldiers and commanders. Antidote, directed by James Jones, digs into the truth about Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deadly regime. Checkpoint Zoo, directed by Joshua Zeman, documents the daring rescue of thousands of animals trapped behind enemy lines in the Russian invasion of Ukraine. As War continues to affect regions like the Middle East and Ukraine, art serves as a powerful reminder of our shared humanity.

“In a year of record high submissions, despite industry-wide challenges, and global tumult, our incredible filmmaking community delivered again with some of the most surprising, inspiring, hilarious, galvanizing, boundary-breaking, and downright entertaining work we’ve had the privilege to feature at the festival,” said Tribeca Festival Director and SVP of Programming Cara Cusumano. “Whether grappling with everything from the crisis of global democracy to the most intimate of human dramas, it was heartening to be reminded of the undeniable power of a great film to illuminate our world.”

For the first time, Tribeca’s signature Viewpoints section of bold original visions and innovative perspectives will be in competition. The interdisciplinary program encompasses U.S. and international films across narrative, documentary, and animation, including the animated feature Boys Go to Jupiter starring Elsie FisherTavi GevinsonJulio Torres, and Sarah Sherman, and the narrative thriller Darkest Miriam with Britt Lower. Documentaries include Champions of the Golden Valley, directed by Ben Sturgulewski, an inspiring sports fable and portrait of people in profound political and social transition, and Searching for Amani, directed by Debra Aroko, a 13-year-old’s dramatic quest to investigate his father’s mysterious murder in one of Kenya’s largest wildlife conservancies. 

The final selections were chosen from a record-breaking number of submissions (13,016). This year’s program includes 103 feature films from 114 filmmakers across 48 countries. The lineup comprises 86 world premieres, two international premieres, six North American premieres, and eight New York premieres. Half of the films in competition are directed by women. Additionally, 35% (36) of feature films are directed by BIPOC filmmakers. There are 30 films directed by first-time filmmakers and 25 directors returning to Tribeca with their latest projects. 

The Tribeca Festival is curated by Festival Director and SVP of Programming Cara Cusumano, Artistic Director Frédéric Boyer; VP of Shorts Programming Ben Thompson; Senior Programmers Liza Domnitz, Faridah Gbadamosi, Jarod Neece, José F. Rodriguez; Programmers Casey Baron, Jason Gutierrez, Jonathan Penner, and Madison Egan; VP of Games and Immersive Casey Baltes and Immersive Curator Ana Brzezińska; EVP of Artist Relations Nancy Lefkowitz and VP of Artist Relations Meredith Mohr; Curator of Audio Storytelling Davy Gardner; Music Programmer Vincent Cassous; along with a team of associate programmers; supported and inspired by the legendary Paula Weinstein.

The full feature film lineup is detailed below. For more updates on programming follow @Tribeca and #Tribeca2024 on TwitterInstagramFacebook, and LinkedIn. A Tribeca Membership or 2024 Tribeca Festival passes and ticket packages can be purchased at tribecafilm.com.


For more Tribeca Film Festival reviews from years past, click here!

 

To follow along this year, type Tribeca 2024 in our search bar.


 

‘YANNICK’ (2024) Meta theatre lunacy

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YANNICK

The absurdity of filmmaker Quentin Dupieux (Smoking Causes Coughing) is back in his latest film, YANNICK. During a live performance of a play, a dissatisfied audience member stops the actors, demanding a better story. The actors do not take his criticism well, leading the man to take more drastic measures.

With real-life increases in incidences of unruly theatergoers, Dupieux taps into the lack of civility and the culture of complaint. You see it all over the Internet because anyone can upload to YouTube or TikTok these days “expressing” their faux outrage. From conspiracy theories to rage-baiting clickbait, we have gone mad. YANNICK also directly addresses how quickly words lead to the threat of physical violence.

Yannick still 1Dupieux is a master of providing comedy within social commentary. As Yannick becomes more agitated, he reveals how out of touch he is with general society while simultaneously hurling offensive barbs at his captives. Equal parts hilarious and terrifying, all I could imagine as an actor and theatre patron was how I might escape such a scenario.

Longtime collaborator Raphaël Quenard gives our titular character a fully fleshed-out nuance that startles. His surprisingly levelheaded approach and matter-of-fact delivery create an entirely unsettling fear. All of this is evident within the first twenty minutes of the film. Quenard delivers one hell of a turn. He is fantastic.

Yannick cast still 2The honest laughs come when Dupieux leans fully into the meta satire in new dialogue written by Yannick. Filled with redundancies and mistakes, the audience in the theatre and at home belly laugh at the actors’ forced commitment.

The cast nails the table-read style of acting. It’s such a specific cadence. Fellow performers will eat it up. YANNICK is classic Dupieux. His dialogue drips with sarcasm, saying the quiet part out loud. That is what makes his films deliciously unpredictable.

YANNICK captures the essence of live theatre and life itself. Dupieux continues to thrill with his coordinated chaos. These days, everyone’s a critic.

YANNICK PREMIERES EXCLUSIVELY ON MUBI, APRIL 5

DJ-turned-filmmaker Quentin Dupieux (Smoking Causes CoughingDeerskin) returns with the Locarno-prize-winning comedy YANNICK, an absurdist tale navigating the relationship between artists and audiences. 

On a rare night off, car park guard Yannick attends a production of the play “Le Cocu.” Dissatisfied by the performance, he hijacks the show and demands to be made the playwright in order to get his valuable time back. Despite the ridicule, he is determined to prove even a car park guard can create good entertainment.

Shot in secret in just 6 days, Dupieux serves up his signature slice of satire in this quick-fire meta-comedy reflecting on his own relationship with audiences and critics. 

 

Director’s Biography

Born in Paris in 1974, Quentin Dupieux discovered cinema and bought his first synthesizer at the age of 18. Under the name Mr Oizo, he released his track Flat Beat and albums such as Analog Worms Attack, Moustache (Half a Scissor), and Lambs Anger.

In 2007, Dupieux directed, shot, edited, and composed the music for his first feature film, Steak. He went on to direct the absurdist horror film Rubber (2010) and the comedy Wrong, followed by Wrong Cops (2012), Reality (2014), Keep an Eye Out (2018) with Benoît Poelvoorde and Grégoire Ludig, Deerskin (2019) with Jean Dujardin and Adèle Haenel, Mandibles (2020), with Grégoire Ludig and David Marsais, Incredible but true, selected at Berlinale 2022, and Smoking Makes Coughing, presented in the Midnight Screening section at Cannes Film Festival 2022.

Yannick, his latest feature film stars Raphaël Quenard, Pio Marmaï, Blanche Gardin, and Sébastien Chassagne; and was produced by Hugo Sélignac (Chi-Fou-Mi) and Thomas and Mathieu Verhaegue (Atelier de Production).


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For more Quentin Dupieux reviews, click here!

SHUDDER CELEBRATES HALFWAY TO HALLOWEEN 2024 WITH A KILLER LINEUP

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SHUDDER CELEBRATES HALFWAY TO HALLOWEEN WITH A KILLER LINEUP OF NEW FILM PREMIERES INCLUDING RECORD-BREAKING HIT LATE NIGHT WITH THE DEVIL, CREATURE FEATURE INFESTED AND SUPERNATURAL HORROR BAGHEAD

Programming Event Timed to Shudder TV Launch on AMC+ with LIVE

Viewing Parties for New Films, Marathons and All-New Episodes of Popular Series The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs
Shudder Halfway to Halloween 2024

NEW YORK, NY – April 1, 2024 – April showers scare up new horror films and series on Shudder, AMC Networks’ premium streaming service for horror, thriller and the supernatural, for its annual Halfway to Halloween horror-thon. Too much fun to celebrate just once a year, the streamer celebrates the halfway point to Halloween every April with a killer lineup of Shudder Original Film premieres, LIVE viewing parties for Shudder’s Original series The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs, and more. The horror celebration is timed to Shudder TV’s launch on AMC+ with new events including marathons of signature series and LIVE watch parties for new film premieres.



Fans are invited to follow along on @shudder social for #HalfwaytoHalloween recommended films to watch all month long.



Shudder’s Halfway to Halloween highlights include:



Baghead (Shudder Exclusive Film)
New Film Premieres Friday, April 5

Following the death of her estranged father (Peter Mullan), Iris (Freya Allan) learns she has inherited a run-down, centuries-old pub. She travels to Berlin to identify her father’s body and meet with The Solicitor (Ned Dennehy) to discuss the estate. Little does she know, when the deed is signed, she will become inextricably tied to an unspeakable entity that resides in the pub’s basement–Baghead–a shape-shifting creature that can transform into the dead. Two thousand in cash for two minutes with the creature is all it takes for desperate loved ones to ease their grief. Neil (Jeremy Irvine), who has lost his wife, is Iris’ first customer. Like her father, Iris is tempted to exploit the creature’s powers and help desperate people for a price. But she soon discovers breaking the two-minute rule can have terrifying consequences. Together with her best friend Katie (Ruby Barker), Iris must battle to keep control of Baghead and figure out how to destroy her, before she destroys them.



The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs Season 6 (Shudder Original Series)
LIVE Watch Parties Continue Every Other Friday, April 12 and April 26, on Shudder TV and AMC+ TV

The supersized sixth season continues with all-new episodes rolling out biweekly on Shudder and AMC+.



Late Night with the Devil (Shudder Original Film)
New Film Premieres Friday, April 19; LIVE Watch Party at 9pm ET

October 31, 1977. Jack Delroy’s syndicated talk show ‘Night Owls’ has long been a trusted companion to insomniacs around the country, but a year on from the tragic death of Jack’s wife, ratings have plummeted. Desperate to turn his fortunes around, Jack plans a Halloween special like no other, unaware he is about to unleash evil into the living rooms of America. Starring David Dastmalchian (Oppenheimer) and Laura Gordon (Reckoning).



Infested (Shudder Original Film)
New Film Premieres Friday, April 26; LIVE Watch Party April 27 at 9pm ET

Director Sébastien Vanicek makes his feature film debut with a story that follows Kaleb, who is about to turn 30 and has never been lonelier. He’s fighting with his sister over a matter of inheritance and has cut ties with his best friend. Fascinated by exotic animals, he finds a venomous spider in a bazaar and brings it back to his flat. It only takes a moment for it to escape and reproduce, turning the whole place into a dreadful web trap. Starring Théo Christine (Suprêmes), Finnegan Oldfield (Final Cut), Jérôme Niel (Smoking Causes Coughing), Sofia Lesaffre (Les Misérables) and Lisa Nyarko.



Other Shudder TV Programming Stunts (all times are ET):
 The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula – All five seasons airing back-to-back beginning 6:00am on April 6 through April 9.

 101 Scariest Movie Moments of All Time – Back-to-back episodes airing 6:00am-9pm on April 13

 Creepshow – Seasons 1-4 airing back-to back beginning 6:30am on April 15 through April 16.

 Hell House LLC and V/H/S Franchises – All films from two iconic film franchises air back-to-back from 1:30pm-1:30am on April 17 and 1:45pm-1:30am on April 18.

 Nature Nightmares – Dig into the scary side of Mother Nature with nature-themed horror in honor of Earth Day beginning April 20 at 6:40am through April 22.

 The Last Drive-In Halloween Special Marathon – Check out all the tricks and treats with Joe Bob Halloween specials all day long beginning 5:30am on April 26, leading up to an all-new episode at 9pm ET.

 Halfway to “Halloween”– Celebrate the six-month countdown to our favorite holiday with two full days of Halloween-themed films beginning April 29 at 6:45am through April 30.



OTHER NEW ADDITIONS TO SHUDDER THIS MONTH



April 1



The Terror Season 2 – Full Series Binge

Set during World War II, the second season of The Terror centers on a series of bizarre deaths that haunt a Japanese American community, and a young man’s journey to understand and combat the malevolent entity responsible. Starring George Takei (Star Trek).



Mute Witness – Streaming Film Premiere

From director Anthony Waller (An American Werewolf in Paris), a mute makeup artist working on a slasher movie being shot in Moscow, is locked in the studio after house. While there, she witnesses a brutal murder and must escape capture.



The Gates – Streaming Film Premiere

A serial killer has been sentenced to death by electric chair in London in the 1890s, but in his final hours, he puts a curse on the prison he’s in, and all of those in it.



Drag Me to Hell

A loan officer who evicts an old woman from her home finds herself the recipient of a supernatural curse. Desperate, she turns to a seer to try and save her soul, while evil forces work to push her to a breaking point.



Ghost Stories (2017)

After receiving a file with details of three unexplained cases of apparitions, skeptical professor Phillip Goodman embarks on a terrifying trip.



THE RENTALThe Rental

Two couples rent a vacation home for what should be a celebratory weekend getaway.



At the Devil’s Door

A real estate agent finds herself caught up in something sinister when she has to sell a house with a dark past and meets the troubled teen who used to live there.



The Wind

A plainswoman faces the harshness and isolation of the untamed lad in the Western frontier of the late 1800s.



Summoning Sylvia.jpgSummoning Sylvia

A gay bachelor party turns spooky when sinister spirits are suddenly summoned.



Madman

A legendary psychopathic murderer stalks a summer camp.

*The Last Drive-In: Madman episode also available



Spookies

A wicked sorcerer tries to sacrifice a group of people inside his house with the intention of using their vitality to keep his wife alive.

*The Last Drive-In: Spookies episode also available



Creepshow (1982)

Five grisly tales from a kid’s comic book about a murdered father rising from his grave, a bizarre meteor, a vengeful husband, a mysterious crate’s occupant, and a plague of cockroaches.





April 4



Wake Wood

The parents of a girl who was killed by a savage dog are granted the opportunity to spend three days with their deceased daughter.



Emelie

A couple’s replacement babysitter turns out to be more than they bargained for when she subjects their kids to a series of twisted activities.

 



April 8



Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things

Six friends in a theatrical troupe dig up a corpse on an abandoned island to use in a mock Satanic rite. It backfires with deadly consequences.



The Third Saturday in October

When a psycho goes on a murderous rampage after surviving a botched execution, only two survivors of his initial attack can stop him.



The Third Saturday in October Part V

Follow an implacable killer as he stalks and butchers the occupants of houses across the stretch of one lone country road while the residents prepare to watch a yearly college-football bout.





April 15



The Tunnel

An investigation into a government cover-up leads to a network of abandoned train tunnels deep beneath the heart of Sydney. As a journalist and her crew hunt for the story, it quickly becomes clear the story is hunting them.



The Tunnel: The Other Side of Darkness

On the 10th anniversary of the Australian found footage film The Tunnel, this documentary delves into the filmmakers endeavors to challenge how films are financed and distributed, and the lasting impact The Tunnel had internationally.





April 22



The House of the Devil (2009)

In 1983, financially struggling college student Samantha Hughes takes a strange babysitting job that coincides with a full lunar eclipse. She slowly realizes her clients harbor a terrifying secret, putting her life in mortal danger.

*The Last Drive-In: Joe Bob’s Dinners of Death: The House of the Devil episode also available



The Innkeepers

During the final days at the Yankee Pedlar Inn, two employees determined to reveal the hotel’s haunted past begin to experience disturbing events as old guests check in for a stay.



The Changeling (1980)

After the death of his wife and daughter in a car crash, a music professor staying in a long-vacant Seattle mansion is dragged into a decades-old mystery by an inexplicable presence in the mansion’s attic.

*The Last Drive-In: Joe Bob’s Dinners of Death: The Changeling episode also available



Final Cut (aka Death Games)

A reporter and his girlfriend follow around a famous actor/entrepreneur and discover some dirt on him to be made public.



13th Floor

As a child, a girl witnessed her father electrocute a young boy. When she grows into an adult, the ghost of the murdered boy appears to her, and together they set out to expose the crimes of her father.




About Shudder

AMC Networks’ Shudder is a premium streaming video service, super-serving members with the best selection in genre entertainment, covering horror, thrillers and the supernatural. Shudder’s expanding library of film, TV series, and Original Content is available on most streaming devices in the US, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. Over the last few years, Shudder has introduced audiences to groundbreaking and critically acclaimed films including Rob Savage’s HOST, Jayro Bustamante’s LA LLORONA, Phil Tippett’s MAD GOD, Coralie Fargeat’s REVENGE, Joko Anwar’s SATAN’S SLAVES, Josh Ruben’s SCARE ME, Kyle Edward Ball’s SKINAMARINK, Christian Tafdrup’s SPEAK NO EVIL, Chloe Okuno’s WATCHER, Demián Rugna‘s WHEN EVIL LURKS, and the latest in the V/H/S film anthology franchise, as well as the fan favorite TV series THE BOULET BROTHERS’ DRAGULA, Greg Nicotero’s CREEPSHOW, and THE LAST DRIVE-IN WITH JOE BOB BRIGGS.


For Shudder reviews, click here!

‘Can’ & YATCH- ‘My Idea’ (SXSW 2024) one director, mesmerizing vision

SXSW 2024 color logo

CAN

CAN poster SXSW 2024Filmmaker Kailee McGee shares snapshots of her innermost thoughts on her journey with breast cancer. Tongue in cheek, manic, clever, stream of consciousness, unfiltered, and hilariously meta, CAN feels revelatory. It is celebratory irreverence. McGee makes her situation relatable and palpable. She is raw and funny as hell. I would 1000% watch a feature-length version. It has that “it” factor, and McGee owns every bit of its magic.

Can SXSW 2024 still

Credits

Director:

Kailee McGee

Producer:

JP Bolles, Kailee McGee

Screenwriter:

Kailee McGee

Cinematographer:

Patrick Jones

Editor:

Rich Costales, Kailee McGee

Production Designer:

Rose Curry

Sound Designer:

Travis Prater

Music:

Andrew Orkin

Principal Cast:

Kailee McGee, Mamoudou Athie, Whitmer Thomas, Ellyn Jameson, Greta Titelman, Nori Reed

Additional Credits:

Sound Recordist: Dave McKeever, Art Director: Tahryn Smith, Art Director: Conor Brown, Hair & Makeup: Christina Spina, Additional Editing: Mike Giambra

 

SXSW logo

MY IDEA

MY IDEA poster SXSW 2024

The video features a performer perpetually dressed in a mo-cap suit. It is what my brain imagines Andy Serkis‘ life to be in his nightmares. Alex Karpovsky delivers a charming performance. You can feel the yearning for freedom.

YATCH‘s track is super catchy. Kailee McGee proves, for the 2nd time at this year’s fest, that she possesses unbridled creativity. Reteaming with editor Rich Costales is chef’s kiss. They clearly understand each other’s vision. Give her all the jobs.

Credits

Director:

Kailee McGee

Executive Producer:

Adam Lisagor

Producer:

Kailee McGee, Nichole Luna, Rich Costales

Screenwriter:

Kailee McGee

Cinematographer:

Connor Heck

Editor:

Rich Costales

Production Designer:

Tahryn Smith

Sound Designer:

Dave McKeever

Music:

YACHT

Principal Cast:

Alex Karpovsky, Claire L. Evans, Jona Bechtolt, Rob Kieswetter, Kailee McGee

Additional Credits:

Hair & Make-Up: Christina Spina, 1st AD: Jason Lawliss, Choreography: Maritza Navarro, Color by: Beau Leon, VFX: Sandwich Video, MoCap Costume by: Francesca Roth, Set Dresser: Conor Brown, Prop Master: Graham Anderson, TED Talk Script by: Claire L. Evans

For all things SXSW 2024, click here!


‘ADRIANNE & THE CASTLE’ (SXSW 2024) The purest love of all

SXSW 2024 color logo

ADRIANNE & THE CASTLE

Adrianne & the castle SXSW 2024Director Shannon Walsh shares the extraordinary love story between an artist and his larger-than-life wife. SXSW 2024 audiences discover the legacy of Adrianne and Alan St. George. This documentary is a tale of adoration, art, and Adrianne.

Adrianne is a mesmerizing figure. Her vibrant handcrafted wardrobe and elaborate wigs were more than an act. Adrianne embodied creativity and dreams. She was a living, breathing ball of light.

Adrianne & The Castle SXSW 2024 waltzHerein lies the challenge for Alan and Shannon. How do you do justice to such a love story? Experimental musical interludes, Adrianne’s Doll Room, quirky home movies, and the ever-expanding house that grows like a whimsical version of The Winchester House. The mansion is an explosion of color, lavish draping fabrics, sculptures, and murals, all featuring Adrianne and Alan’s likenesses. It is Versailles meets Grimm’s Fairytales, each room mirroring a slice of her exuberant persona. She was and remains Alan’s muse for all things.

Alan owns a mascot company, providing characters from Smokey The Bear, Disney, and The White House to local high schools. It is how he finances the endless construction. After Adrianne passes, Alan is lost. The film is a creative catharsis. Half tribute and half coping mechanism, ADRIANNE & THE CASTLE is a fascinating meditation on grief and a portrait of exemplary soul mates.

Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
9:15pm10:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
11:15am12:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
11:45am1:11pm
 
Director:

Shannon Walsh

Producer:

Ina Fichman

Screenwriter:

Shannon Walsh, Laurel Sprengelmeyer

Cinematographer:

Pablo Alvarez-Mesa

Editor:

Sophie Farkas Bolla

Production Designer:

Nalo Soyini Bruce

Sound Designer:

Luc Bouchard

Music:

Richard Reed Parry

Principal Cast:

Alan St George, Nathan McDonald, Shannon Walsh, SLee

Additional Credits:

Re-recording Mixer: Gavin Fernandes, Additional Vocal Arrangements and Music by: Raquel Acevedo Klein

SXSW logo

For all things SXSW 2024, click here!


 

Review: ‘LAST PARTY’ (2024) shines in its camera work.

LAST PARTY

In Nicolas Dozol‘s LAST PARTY, one final hoorah to celebrate high school graduation takes a weird turn when four of its attendees experience subtle hallucinations.

Last Party (2024)Cleverly choreographed camera work by Aurel Ganz makes us think the film is one long take. Just as impressive is the actual shot list. 28, to be exact. It is one hell of a visual feat. The flip side of these takes is the narrative feels draggy even at 110 minutes. The sci-fi element does not seem necessary to the plot. Ultimately, it goes nowhere.

Last Party (2024) final scenePerformance is solid from our four main leads, each one bombarded by misogyny, judgment, and outright hateful behavior. LAST PARTY might be more successful as a series. There is much needed in character development, although the breadcrumbs are there. It feels more like a treatment for a larger project than a stand-alone piece.


“Last Party” the feature film debut of Swiss and French filmmaker Nicolas Dozol will make its US debut at Laemmle Monica Film Center from February 9 -16th in Santa Monica.  The film is being distributed by LA-based Synergetic and is the first feature film produced by the young Swiss company Lights Rush.

 

A mystery coming-of-age story, part horror, part fantasy, part thriller, the film takes place during a high school graduation party where four teenagers in the midst of an existential crisis are confronted with their angst. When they suddenly find themselves locked up, they wonder if it might be their last night ever. The film is choreographed by 28 long takes, giving the illusion of a single real shot and was shot in just five days.

“Last Party”, a New Breed Entertainment production, is directed by Nicolas Dozol, written by Leah Ladoux, Paul Tomasini, Chloe Vittenet and Dozol, and produced by Mathilde Errand and Dozol.  The film stars breakout newcomers Lucie Cecchi, Remi Gerard, Uma Condolo and Teddy Hardy.  Cinematography is by Aurel Ganz.


For more French film reviews on RND, click here!

Slamdance 2024: Peter Oh’s ‘LOVE AND WORK’ – a parallel what-if of haunting hilarity

slamdance 2024

LOVE AND WORK

Love And Work Slamdance 2024

Writer-director-editor-producer-cinematographer and obvious showoff Pete Ohs brings his latest genre buster, LOVE AND WORK, to Slamdance 2024. Reteaming with Will Madden and Stephanie Hunt from festival darling Jethica, this new film leans further into the absurd. Once again, gifting us with striking black-and-white cinematography, a voiceover hands us the immensely intriguing, near-future plot where AI has taken all the jobs and those seeking employment are outlaws.

Diane and Fox seek advice from a trusted local elder as he regales them with tales from his grandfather and the elusive concept of a weekend. Those who dare go against the grain find hobbies forced upon them as punishment. The backward nature of the plot sneaks up on you. It may not be so backward after all.

Stephanie Hunt plays Diane with an earned “cool girl” attitude that is infectious. Will Madden as Fox is a beautiful mix of awkward and charming. Their chemistry is electric.

Charles Watson‘s original songs are folksy bangers. There is a dry whimsy that I can only equate to British humor. A tongue-in-cheek look at societal norms and how humanity fumbles through the search for purpose and personal connection, LOVE AND WORK is a hilarious what-if and one terrifying step from reality.

  • Director: Pete Ohs
  • Screenwriter: Stephanie Hunt, Will Madden, Pete Ohs
  • Producer: Pete Ohs
  • Cast: Stephanie Hunt, Will Madden, Frank Mosley, Alexi Pappas, John S. Davies
  • Year: 2024
  • Runtime: 74 minutes
  • Language: English
  • Country: USA
  • Premiere: World Premiere
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Subtitle Language: English
Click for all our past Slamdance coverage
 
For all things Slamdance 2024 head here

slamdance logo


 

Sundance 2024: ‘SAY HI AFTER YOU DIE’ is perfect

Sundance 2024 logo

SAY HI AFTER YOU DIE

Say Hi After You Die Sundance 2024

Sundance 2024 short film SAY HI AFTER YOU DIE is a laugh-out-loud look at grief, mental health, and forever friendship. Following the unexpected passing of her best friend, Gloria finds herself talking to a porta-potty. It’s easy to see why the film won the Short Film Jury Award for U.S. Fiction. It is that wonderful. 

Writers Ruby Caster (who hilariously portrays Ruby in the film, and Kate Jean Hollowell, who also stars and directs the film, nail the Gen Z/ Millennial cusp banter and fashion. They are a fierce team of creatives.
Say_Hi_After_You_Die-Kate Jean HollowellGeorge Basil plays Dave, the construction foreman, with a life-affirming kindness. One of his lines perfectly sums up the film’s heart, hitting you square in the chest, “We’re just friends walking each other home.” Hollowell is outstanding as Gloria. Her comic timing is the stuff of the gods, but she also delivers authentic depth. She is a star.

SAY HI AFTER YOU DIE has a smirk-inducing musical sequence. The choreography from Kat Burns is inarguably spectacular. For a 17-minute film, Sundance audiences will laugh, dance, and tear up. This is one of the year’s best.

Sundance Screening Times
Screening as part of Short Film Program 4

World Premiere – January 21st, 12:15PM MST (Prospector Square Theatre)
Public Screening #2 – January 22nd, 5:30PM MST (Megaplex Theatres at The Gateway SLC)
Public Screening #3 – January 25th, 12:00PM MST (Redstone Cinemas)
Public Screening #4 – January 27th, 4:00PM MST (Megaplex Theatres at The Gateway SLC)
Public Screening #5 – January 28th, 1:30PM MST (Holiday Village Cinemas)

Kate Jean HollowellKate Jean Hollowell is a multi-hyphenate director, comedian and musician, who honed her humor, storytelling and visual style by making her own music videos, showcased at SXSW in 2022 and 2023, as well as her short film Are They Smiling?, which premiered at the 2020 Portland Film Festival and won several awards. Taking on narrative, Kate has managed to find a unique voice that balances humor and heart through all her work. Finding ways to insert unexpected musical numbers in everything she does is a trademark all her own.


Director: Kate Jean Hollowell
Screenwriters: Kate Jean Hollowell, Ruby Caster
Cast: Kate Jean Hollowell, Ruby Caster, George Basil
Producer: Miranda Kahn
Executive Producers: Mindy Goldberg, Jacki Calliero, Melissa Culligan
Production Designer: Jenna Tooley
Choreography: Kathryn Burns
Cinematography: Jordan Black
Costume Design: Jordy Scheinberg
Edited by: Talia Pasqua
VFX Artist: Alex Thomas

Year: 2023
Category: Short
Country: US
Language: English
TRT: 17 min

Sundance 2024’s full lineup can be found here!

 

Don’t forget to check out all our Sundance coverage throughout the years

Sundance Color logo 2023

Sundance 2024 review: Cheeky documentary ‘REALM OF SATAN’ gives the middle finger to haters.

Sundance 2024 logo

REALM OF SATAN

Realm Of SatanFilmmaker Scott Cummings brings Sundance 2024 audiences into the everyday lives of Satanists. The Church of Satan boasts innumerable followers around the world. REALM OF SATAN introduces us to members from all backgrounds in this part experimental, part cinema verité documentary that both challenges and pokes fun at any preconceived notions we may have had in the past.

As a forced Catholic from birth to age sixteen, my parents exposed me to some of the wackiest ideological notions simply because their parents had done the same to them. Anyone who knows me well has heard the story of my 8th-grade religion class epiphany. My teacher, in trying to explain that sin has levels of severity, touched upon homosexuality. I could not believe what I was hearing. I could not possibly be correct. In a class of 18 students, I stood upon my chair and asked, “So you’re telling me that if I told my mother that I was gay, it would be the equivalent of me telling her I had murdered someone?! That’s it. I’m out.” A quote from the Satanist text says all you need to know; “I favor the just and curse the rotten.” With a focus on individualism, it all sounds good to me.

REALM OF SATAN features strategically placed, in-your-face scenes but also mundane ones. It does not give a shit what you think. The tongue-in-cheek approach to some of the moments feels like curated bait for Christofascist audiences, which, as a liberal who embraces witchcraft, these choices are simply delicious fodder. You have to laugh.

Aside from some stereotypical wardrobe choices and a pentagram here and there, the subjects in the film could believe in anything or nothing at all. Their text is no more shocking than that of every other sect of religion. Have you read The Bible? The glorious theatricality of some rituals and eclectic decor create beautifully gothic tableaus that mesmerize, particularly for a self-proclaimed “Spooky Girl” like me. The visual trickery is fun as hell. The final camera sweep will look familiar to fans of Tales From The Crypt, right down to the gate squeak. It’s a clever touch. In all, REALM OF SATAN isn’t trying to convert anyone. It’s simply giving audiences a peek behind the curtain to dispel misinformation but with dramatic flair.


Credits

  • DIRECTOR(S)

    SCOTT CUMMINGS

  • SCREENWRITER

    SCOTT CUMMINGS

  • PRODUCERS

    CAITLIN MAE BURKE

    PACHO VELEZ

    MOLLY GANDOUR

  • EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS

    JOE POLETTO

    SAM ROSEME

    CATHY TANKOSIC

  • CINEMATOGRAPHER

    GERALD KERKLETZ

  • PRINCIPAL CAST

    PETER GILMORE

    PEGGY NADRAMIA

    BLANCHE BARTON

  • CO-PRODUCERS

    ELIZA HITTMAN

    GERALD KERKLETZ

    ASHER LEVINTHAL

    JACK A. LIECHTUNG

    GABRIEL MERKIN

  • YEAR

    2024

  • CATEGORY

    FEATURE

  • COUNTRY

    UNITED STATES

  • LANGUAGE

    ENGLISH, SPANISH, GERMAN, SWEDISH

  • RUN TIME

    80 MIN

  • COMPANY

    VITAL EXISTENCE LLC


    For more info on Sundance 2024 click here!

     

    Festival Dates: Thu, Jan 18, 2024, 2:45 PM – Sun, Jan 28, 2024

     

    Stay tuned for more Sundance 2024 coverage, and don’t forget to head to Unseen Films for even more! For past Sundance reviews click here.

     

Sundance 2024 preview: A film for everyone at the festival’s 40th Edition.

Sundance Film Festival 2024 Color Logo
The Sundance Film Festival has launched the careers of indie film directors, writers, and actors now for 40 years. Back with in-person and online screening opportunities, this year’s iteration boasts new and bold storytelling from every genre. Here are a handful of films we’ll track in 2024.

 

For more information and tickets to Sundance 2024, click here! Be on the lookout for shared coverage with our good friend, Steve Kopian, at Unseen Films. To see all of his reviews and what he’s looking forward to this year, head over to his home base.

(World Cinema Dramatic Competition)
SUJO

S till from the Sundance film SUJO
When a cartel gunman is killed, he leaves behind Sujo, his beloved 4-year-old son. The shadow of violence surrounds Sujo during each stage of his life in the isolated Mexican countryside. As he grows into a man, Sujo finds that fulfilling his father’s destiny may be inescapable.

A movie about time and trauma, this beautifully acted and hauntingly written film from the directors of Identifying Features will be sure to captivate audiences. 

This film contains strobe effects.
Available in person. Also available online for the public (January 25–28)


40th Edition Celebration Screenings And Events

DIG! XX

DIG! XX tracks the tumultuous rise of two talented musicians, Anton Newcombe, leader of the Brian Jonestown Massacre, and Courtney Taylor, leader of the Dandy Warhols, and dissects their star-crossed friendship and bitter rivalry. Through their loves and obsessions, gigs and recordings, arrests and death threats, uppers and downers, and ultimately to their chance at a piece of the profit-driven music business, they stage a self-proclaimed revolution in the music industry.

DIG! premiered at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival in the U.S. Documentary Competition, where it ultimately won the Grand Jury Prize in the documentary category. DIG! XX, which will premiere at the upcoming Festival, is not only a digitally enhanced, remixed, and remastered version of DIG!, but also a special 20th anniversary new edit of the film culled from footage shot over seven years, and brought to you by the original sibling team, Ondi and David Timoner.

*Digitally enhanced and featuring new footage


(Premieres)

And So It Begins

Amidst the traditional pomp and circumstance of Filipino elections, a quirky people’s movement rises to defend the nation against deepening threats to truth and democracy. In a collective act of joy as a form of resistance, hope flickers against the backdrop of increasing autocracy.

Available in person. Also available online for the public (January 25–28)


(World Cinema Documentary Competition)

Eternal You

Startups are using AI to create avatars that allow relatives to talk with their loved ones after they have died. An exploration of a profound human desire and the consequences of turning the dream of immortality into a product.

“I wanted to see if he was okay,” explains Christi, one of the users of Project December. With this innovative software, users can communicate with a virtual version of the deceased through a chatbot that simulates the dead person’s conversation patterns. Hers was an attempt to check on her first love. Others may simply miss someone, seek permission to move on, or want to rid themselves of guilt.

At this point, I think we’ve all seen the app that turns photos into moving images. The idea feels equally sentimental and disturbing. Eternal You takes this tech further, begging the question, “How far are we willing to go to feel connected to those we’ve lost, and how might that affect our brains?” 

Available in person. Also available online for the public (January 25–28)


World Cinema Documentary Competition

A New Kind of Wilderness

In a forest in Norway, a family lives an isolated lifestyle in an attempt to be wild and free, but a tragic event changes everything, and they are forced to adjust to modern society.

Silje Evensmo Jacobsen mixes home movies and a carefully intimate approach to the Payne family, whose isolated existence gets shaken up quite suddenly. This beautiful portrait of connection and resilience in the face of grief will touch your heart.

Available in person. Also available online for the public (January 25–28)


(NEXT)

REALM OF SATAN

An experiential portrait depicting Satanists in both the every day and in the extraordinary as they fight to preserve their lifestyle: magic, mystery, and misanthropy.

Filmmaker Scott Cummings is no stranger to Sundance, having edited many highly acclaimed festival premieres over the past decade, including Never Rarely Sometimes Always, Monsters and Men, and Wendy.

When I tell you that you aren’t ready for this doc, I mean it in the best way possible. Created to ruffle feathers and dispel right-wing hypocrisy, Scott Cummings titillates with gorgeous framing and a touch of tongue-in-cheek magical realism. 

This film contains graphic sexual content. Audiences must be 18 or older.

Available in person. Also available online for the public (January 25–28)


(Premieres)

My Old Ass

Maisy Stella and Aubrey Plaza in Sundance film MY OLD ASS

Maisy Stella and Aubrey Plaza in the Sundance film MY OLD ASS

The summer before college, bright-yet-irreverent Elliott comes face-to-face with her older self during a mushroom trip. The encounter spurs a funny and heartfelt journey of self-discovery and first love as Elliott prepares to leave her childhood home.

The concept alone should get your butt into a seat, but filmmaker Megan Park casting Aubrey Plaza is chef’s kiss in indie cinema.


(Midnight)

I Saw the TV Glow

Justice Smith and Brigette Lundy-Paine  in I SAW THE TV GLOW

Justice Smith and Brigette Lundy-Paine in I SAW THE TV GLOW

Teenager Owen is just trying to make it through life in the suburbs when his classmate introduces him to a mysterious late-night TV show — a vision of a supernatural world beneath their own. In the pale glow of the television, Owen’s view of reality begins to crack.

Writer-director Jane Schoenbrun’s We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (2021 Sundance Film Festival) gave us one of the coolest genre-bending films with a breakout performance from star Anna Cobb. I cannot wait to see how this one twists my sanity and senses. 

This film contains violence and gore.

This film contains strobe effects.


Sundace Film Festival 2024 Black and White logoTo find out more information on all things Sundance 2024, head to https://festival.sundance.org/

 

Now streaming and out on Blu-ray today, Shem Bitterman’s ‘DISTANT TALES’ tackles the good, the bad, and the ugly of humanity and isolation

DISTANT TALES

In a near-future dystopia, when a worldwide event means people can no longer meet face to face, four stories — PLACEBO, PLEASE LOG ON, TOUCH, and R NOUGHT — unfold with unexpected revelations as the screens through which they connect hide the twisted reality of their lives.


Writer-director Shem Bitterman

Writer-director Shem Bitterman taps into human nature with four stories that capture the echoes of the Covid lockdown. The dialogue is theatrical. DISTANT TALES could easily transition from screen to stage. The real-time, intensely intimate vulnerability would be electric. It already pours off the screen.


TOUCHCo-workers surreptitiously connect over late-night Zoom calls. Once discovered by their partners, Ben and Seraphina show their true colors. Samuel Martin Lewis gives Ben a relatable longing. The performance from Tiffany Wolff is chilling.


PLEASE LOG ON
A job interview goes off the rails when the effects of prolonged isolation rear their ugly head. Liz Fenning gives Beth an irritable edge and desperation we all recognized during lockdown. Rupak Ginn is Rohit, a character in the opposite headspace. This segment presents the viewer with an awkward moral dilemma.


PLACEBOThe head of a clinical trial and one of her subjects find common ground through culture and shameless flirting but clash over social distancing protocols and the trial’s progress. Amen Igbinosun plays Ese as a jovial spirit. His physical and emotional journey is heartbreaking. Carolyn Michelle Smith balances skepticism and kindness. It is a nuanced turn.


R NOUGHTThis intense piece explores online extremism and conspiracy theories with phenomenal performances from Ben Bowen and Christoper Curry. An online talking head pushes a grieving husband to take up arms against the government. Can he battle his emotions and resist the influences in his life?


As a whole, DISTANT TALES tackles all the chaos of lockdown in complex ways. Each story gets under the audience’s skin for vastly different reasons. If nothing else, Bitterman’s keen observation of human desperation will undoubtedly have people talking.


“Distant Tales” trailer:


 
IS NOW AVAILABLE ON iTunes, AMAZON.COM, and VUDU
COMING OUT ON BLU-RAY ON DECEMBER 12


The dark psychological thriller, DISTANT TALES, a 4-part anthology from writer/director, award-winning playwright, Shem Bitterman (who, as a young screenwriter, wrote HALLOWEEN 5) and executive produced by Oscar-winner, Tom Schulman (Academy Award – Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen “Dead Poet’s Society”), will be released on Blu-ray December 12.


What’s Your Story?



Los Angeles, CA (November 30, 2023) – After a two-month exclusive run on Cable TV OnDemand with Xfinity, Spectrum, and Contour, DISTANT TALES, from acclaimed playwright and screenwriter writer/director Shem Bitterman and executive producer and Oscar-winner Tom Schulman (“Dead Poet’s Society”), is now available on iTunes, Amazon.com, and Vudu. The film will be available on additional streaming platforms later in December. Pre-orders are now available for the December 12 Blu-Ray release on Amazon.com.


DISTANT TALES, a dark, four-part dramatic anthology where desire, madness and a struggle for love erupt in a dystopic future after a worldwide event prevents people from meeting face to face, was filmed in isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic.


In DISTANT TALES four individual stories set during a worldwide pandemic unfold with unexpected twists and revelations: an extramarital affair, cut short by a pandemic and continued online; a mysterious job interview, overseen by an unseen judge; a vaccine trial, where a burgeoning love leads to some bad decisions; a grieving dad who finds sympathy from an online advocate for violence.


 

Year Two is a Go! Dances With Films NYC 2023 announces lineup with 64 world premieres

2nd Annual Dances With Films – NYC 

announces films and events

(November 30-December 3)

 

The celebrated true indie-focused film festival returns to New York City
with three times as many films as last year’s debut. 
 
64 World Premiere Screenings Featured
  
Dylan K. Narang’s TAPAWINGO is the Opening Night 
selection, and Nicholas Gyeney’s THE ACTIVATED MAN 
will make its World Premiere as the Closing Night selection.

   

TAPAWINGO

 

New York, NY (November 9, 2023) – Dances With Films announced the film lineup for the return of what has become LA’s largest purely indie film-focused film festival over the past 26 years to New York City (November 30-December 3) for the second time featuring a film lineup nearly three times the size of last year’s NYC debut. DWF alum Dylan K. Narang’s Tapawingo is the Opening Night selection, and Nicholas Gyeney’s psychological thriller The Activated Man will make its world premiere in the Closing Night slot.

 

Among DWF NYC’s lineup of 136 films, including 20 narrative features, 9 documentary features, 19 television and streaming pilots, and 88 short films (73 narrative and 15 documentaries), are an impressive number of world premieres. All screenings will take place at Regal Union Square (850 Broadway).

THE ACTIVATED MAN

 

Among the 64 world premieres are Gyeney’s The Activated ManEtana Jacobson’s Advanced Chemistry, Kevin Interdonato’s The Bastard SonsMichael Groom’s Between The Lights, Isaac Hirotsu Woofter’s Bound, Sara Katarina Burke and Aaron Andrew Keene’s Can’t Seem to Make You Mine, Ryan Moore’s Influence, Michelle Bossy’s Nobody’s Home, Brendan Boogie’s Tallywacker, Micah Khan’s The Zombie Wedding, Justin Best’s Sheryl, and Wynette Yao’s District Of Second Chances. Hanna Vastinsalo’s Palimpsest will make its North American Premiere at Dances With Films NYC.

 After becoming the leading beacon for true indie films and filmmakers in Los Angeles over the past 26 years, this will mark Dances With Films’ return to New York City for the second year. Dances With Films’ Founders and Directors Leslee Scallon and Michael Trent, said, “This year’s theme is “the color of imagination” and that imagination, by its various definitions, exemplifies what Dances With Films will be highlighting this December. We could not be more excited to return to NYC and debut so many wonderful films and help provide a platform for all our indie filmmakers and their projects under the spotlight of this great city.”

 Thursday, November 30 will feature the Opening Night presentation of DWF alumni Dylan K. Narang’s Tapawingo. Previously at DWF with his feature All I Need (2016), Narang’s Tapawingo is a lighthearted coming-of-age comedy stars Jon Heder as an eccentric young man who lives with his mother and works in a mailroom. However, when he must pick up his boss’ son from school, he discovers the kid is the subject of relentless bullying. at school, Naturally, he assembles a team of misfits to ensure the boy’s safety, but the good deed takes an unexpected turn when they discover that the network of bullies they are guarding against wields more power and influence than they initially thought. The film also stars Gina Gershon, Billy Zane, John Ratzenberger, and Amanda Bearse.

 As part of DWF NYC’s dedicated programming of horror, thrillers, and genre films, the Closing Night selection also comes from the film festival’s Midnight section. Sunday, December 3, Nicholas Gyeney’s The Activated Man will make its world premiere as it officially closes the film festival. In the film, a man, struggling with the grief from losing his best friend and beloved dog to cancer, begins to have strange visions only he can see. While he questions whether his mind has fractured or if it’s real, a mysterious rise in murder-suicides takes hold of the city, and he becomes haunted by images of a shadowy figure known as ‘The Fedora Man’. To survive, he must face his fears and confront ‘The Fedora Man’ as he uncovers dark secrets from his past, while finally embracing who he really is, and what he is meant to do.

ADVANCED CHEMISTRY

Additional feature films making their world premieres are Etana Jacobson’s Advanced Chemistry about a scientist whose attempt in the lab to help his lesbian best friend stop cheating on her wife backfires when the wife falls for him. Kevin Interdonato’s The Bastard Sons is a story of revenge by a group of men, when the man who raised them – the family boss – is murdered. Michael Groom’s British romantic drama Between The Lights follows askeptical scientist who falls for a reluctant medium, leading them on an odyssey of love, loss and discovery that turns her world upside down. Isaac Hirotsu Woofter’s Bound focuses on a young introvert who flees with her pet pocket squirrel to New York in order to escape her drug-dealing controlling stepfather. Making its North American Premiere is Vardan Tozija’s M. A multi-national production including            

Macedonia, Croatia, Kosovo, France, and Luxembourg, the film centers on a young boy who lives in the forest under the watchful eye of his overprotective and mysterious father. Their sheltered existence is all he knows until an encounter with a kind-hearted, helpless boy may open up a whole new world to him.

 Also making their world premieres at DWF NYC are Sara Katarina Burke and Aaron Andrew Keene’s Can’t Seem to Make You Mine about a recent parolee who tries to make amends with his ex and become a father to his little boy while staying with a stripper he met on a pen-pal website. Ryan Moore’s Influence focuses on a struggling female filmmaker who kidnaps a famous social media influencer to convince them to play the lead role in her latest project. Michelle Bossy’s Nobody’s Home follows the mind-bending journey of a young man after he is released from the psychiatric hospital with his girlfriend who may or may not be telling him the truth about what he is experiencing. Brendan Boogie’s buddy comedy Tallywacker takes us on a trip with 2 bandmates whose relationship gets tested when one of them gets a gig touring with a major rock star. Micah Khan’s outlandish comedy The Zombie Wedding illustrates the challenges one can have at a New Jersey wedding when the groom is a zombie, and the bride is not. Another film in the Midnight Features section making its world premiere is Justin Best’s Sheryl about a woman who goes on a bloody quest to create the perfect face after she’s dumped by her serial killer boyfriend for not being “hot enough”.

Highlights among the documentary section include one feature-length film making its world premiere, and a second making its U.S. Premiere. Making its world premiere is Wynette Yao’s District Of Second Chances, which follows the journeys of three men – all sentenced to life in prison during the 1990s – who have the possibility of being released and starting a new life thanks to sentencing reform. Making its U.S. premiere will be Emilio Di Stefano’s Denim Hunter. The road movie documentary follows a man whose obsession with really old jeans leads him through the deserts of California, Arizona, and Nevada as well as up the snowclad Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Marc Saltarelli’s Studio One Forever is the untold story of America’s iconic gay disco, a kaleidoscopic excursion into LGBTQ+ history through the lens of Studio One and its adjoining live music venue, The Backlot during the 70s and 80s. Hoag Kepner’s Torched – The Story of Austin Torch tells the story of the Austin Torch, a wild and fiery group of women/non-binary athletes in Austin who are trying to legitimize and professionalize their fringe sport of Ultimate Frisbee.

 The television, web series pilots, and episodics also have a healthy number of world premieres. Those include Federica Marchese and Vinusha Sundaresan’s Chinese series pilot The Blind Zone about a faceoff between two teenage sociopaths after they set their eyes on the same target, David Antonio Martin’s absurd comedy The Selectman where two men are trapped in a picturesque world where the forces of learned behavior, arrested adolescence, and the quest for power forever collide, and Henk Pretorius’ British animated series pilot Travel Foxwhich follows the inquisitive Travel Fox and Bogie the Tortoise as they race across the world, chasing rainbows in search of a legendary pot of gold.

 Additional world premieres include Jon Da’s Ülom: The Primary Experiment is centered on a desperate scientist who undertakes a labyrinthian experiment he believes will locate his missing daughter. Jonathan Chao’s Xander teams a lonely high school student with a Genie. However, the student might lose his new best friend if he makes his one wish. Making its North American premiere will be Aaron Lewis’ Moments, a gripping 9-episode digital series, offering intimate glimpses into characters on the brink. Clarissa De Los Reyes’ Hot Angry Mom about a people-pleasing mom who must face her rage, as a video of her epic meltdown goes viral, and Dana Marisa Schoenfeld’s East about a New York City Corporate attorney who suddenly loses her job and catches her boyfriend cheating, forcing her to reevaluate everything and pursue her childhood dream of being an actress.

Highlights among the short films showcased at DWF NYC include the world premiere of Luke Black’s I Keep Bumping Into Candy Maldonado in which a man keeps bumping into the famous baseball player who is his childhood ideal each day until he’s inspired to make some life changes.

Rj Collins’ thrilling Dropping follows a young woman going through the rigorous “dropping” training which may just turn into a fight for survival. Actor Cynthia Gibb takes a turn behind the camera, directing Lux Freer, about a non-binary teen whose humiliating job of delivering a pizza to bully and aspiring prom queen Arabella Astor’s mansion sets in motion a plot to upend the social stratosphere at her high school. Nazrin Choudhury’s Red, White And Bluestars Brittany Snow as a single parent forced to cross state lines in search of an urgent and necessary abortion. Eleanor Morrison’s You Need To Process This stars Mary Holland and Matt Peters as a married couple who must discuss a sexual assault.

 DWF NYC will also present a series of filmmaker panels focused on current real world issues faced by today’s indie filmmakers at The Stand (116 E. 16th Street) Panels will include “Distribution: Navigating the Marketplace as Well as Forecasting the Future”, which will be moderated by Scott Macauley (Filmmaker Magazine), and is slated to include executives from Magnolia Pictures, IFC, and STX Entertainment, “Making the Sale: The Producer/Sales Agent Dynamic” moderated by Kate Erbland (Indiewire), and includes Carylanna Taylor (Head of Sales Film Sales Corp), Josh Braun (Founder & President, Submarine), and Jason Ishikawa (Sr. Exec. & Co-head of Sales, Cinetic Media), and “The Casting Director/Producer Dynamic” moderated by Michael Sladik (SAGindie New York), and includes casting directors Shayna Markowitz, Bernie Telsey, and Paul Schnee.

 

For more information about the Dances With Films NYC film lineup, events, passes, and tickets, go to: https://danceswithfilms.com/.

 

The 2023 Dances With Films NYC official selections:

 

OPENING NIGHT SELECTION

Tapawingo

Director: Dylan K. Narang

Country: USA; Running Time: 109 min

An oddball becomes the bodyguard for a misfit teenager and finds himself in the crosshairs of the town’s family of bullies.

 

CLOSING NIGHT SELECTION

The Activated Man World Premiere

Director: Nicholas Gyeney

Country: USA; Running Time: 115 min

As Ors Gabriel struggles with the grief from losing his best friend and beloved dog to cancer, the trauma brings on strange visions only Ors can see. While he questions whether his mind has fractured or if it’s real, a mysterious rise in murder-suicides takes hold of the city, and Ors becomes haunted by images of a shadowy figure known as ‘The Fedora Man’. Through torments and terror, Ors must face his fears and confront ‘The Fedora Man’ as he uncovers dark secrets from his past, while finally embracing who he really is, and what he is meant to do.

 

 ADDITIONAL NARRATIVE FEATURES

 

Advanced Chemistry                                                            World Premiere

Director: Etana Jacobson

Country: USA; Running Time: 96 min

A scientist injects his lesbian best friend with a compound he’s created to make her stop cheating on her wife (who is bi), but when the wife finds her new monogamous fixation suffocating, he injects the wife too, which backfires when she falls for him.

 

BASTARD SONS

The Bastard Sons World Premiere

Director: Kevin Interdonato

Country: USA; Running Time: 90 min

Life for a crew of organized criminals is disrupted when Vincent Damiano’s father, the family’s boss, is murdered. Vincent’s ‘bastard’ brothers (UFC legend Frank Edgar, Chicago Med star Malik Whitfield), a group of orphaned souls he raised together, have an idea of who killed their father…his partner Rome (TV/Film veteran Al Sapienza). In a valiant and calculated attempt to regain the business and enact vengeance on Rome over the course of one day, the Bastards wage an all-out war to get their pound of flesh.

 

Between The Lights                                                             World Premiere

Director: Michael Groom

Country: UK; Running Time: 104 min

When skeptical scientist Alice falls for reluctant medium Jay, she’s taken on an odyssey of love, loss and discovery that will turn her world upside down. Between the Lights is a romantic drama with a liberal dose of the supernatural, in which we visit our characters over three consecutive Christmases. It is set within the ancient walls of York and the stunning natural beauty of the Lake District.

 

Bound                                                                                    World Premiere

Director: Isaac Hirotsu Woofter

Country: USA; Running Time: 101 min

To escape her drug-dealing controlling stepfather, a young introvert flees to NYC with only her pet pocket squirrel. After successfully reinventing herself, she realizes she must confront her dark past, to truly be free.

 

Can’t Seem to Make You Mine                                            World Premiere

Directors: Sara Katarina Burke, Aaron Andrew Keene

Country: USA; Running Time: 102 min

A man who was just released from prison tries to make amends with his ex and become a father to his 6-year-old son while staying with a stripper he met on a pen-pal website.

 

Daruma

Director: Alexander Yellen

Country: USA; Running Time: 104 min

Patrick (bitter wheelchair user) must enlist the help of his cantankerous neighbor (double amputee veteran) to transport the daughter he never knew he had to live with her maternal grandparents on the other side of the country. 

 

Grounded

Director: Justin Chan

Country: USA; Running Time: 84 min

William Lee, a 30-something Chinese-Filipino American, introduces his Caucasian girlfriend to his overbearing, immigrant parents when a mysterious cosmic force takes hold of their day.

 

Home Free

Director: Aaron Brown

Country: USA; Running Time: 98 min

In 1997, a group of college misfits invite an unhoused professor to crash on their porch.

Home Free is a Trojan horse, a bold coming-of-age comedy aimed at reaching a mass audience, but also intended to be a catalyst for serious social change sharply focused on one of the most pervasive problems across America—the homelessness epidemic. Humor is our spoonful of sugar. 

 

Influence World Premiere

Director: Ryan Moore

Country: USA; Running Time: 83 min

A female filmmaker struggling with her career and her mental health reaches a breaking point and decides to kidnap a famous social media influencer in an attempt to coerce them into playing the lead role in her latest project.

 

Katie’s Mom

Director: Tyrrell Shaffner

Country: USA; Running Time: 111 min

A heartfelt comedy influenced by The Graduate but told from the perspective of a protagonist inspired by Mrs. Robinson. Set in modern-day Pasadena, California. Nancy Rosenfeld (Dina Meyer), a nurturing mom and recent divorcée, whose beloved Jewish/Christmas mashup holiday celebration with her adult children is derailed when she falls for Alex Rojas (Aaron Dominguez (Only Murders in the Building), her daughter’s charming new boyfriend. Their electrifying affair upends her status quo and sets her on a path to becoming who she was meant to be.

 

M                                                                                             North American Premiere

Director: Vardan Tozija

Countries: Macedonia/Croatia/Kosovo/France/Luxembourg, Running Time: 99 min

In a secluded forest, young Marko lives under the watchful eye of his overprotective and mysterious father. Their sheltered existence is all he knows. Marko seeks solace in his cherished picture book, finding comfort and answers within its pages. One day, an encounter with a kind-hearted, helpless boy named Miko, brings a glimmer of warmth and connection into Marko’s isolated world. As his curiosity grows, Marko yearns to uncover the secrets that lie beyond the confines of the wilderness. But, a cruel turn of events grants him his wish sooner than he expects…

 

Nobody’s Home World Premiere

Director: Michelle Bossy

Country: USA; Running Time: 83 min

When Luca is released from the psychiatric hospital where he and his girlfriend Theodora live, she escapes with him. To remain in control, she takes him to his childhood home, the root of his trauma. Time lapses. Consciousness is distorted. A dead body is discovered. Theodora insists Luca committed the murder in his sleep. Is she telling the truth? A knock on the door suddenly diverts them. Angelica and Jeremy show up, high on acid. Theodora invites them in to test Luca’s loyalty. Her jealousy increases to the point of danger. In the end, nothing is what it seems. Everyone has darkness inside.

 

Palimpsest North American Premiere

Director: Hanna Vastinsalo

Country: Finland; Running Time: 109 min

Two elderly roommates are selected for a medical trial that makes them younger. Given a second chance at life, with the memories of their past life intact, they realize that growing young is not just fun.

 

Space Baby

Director: Rex Dean

Country: USA; Running Time: 99 min

Three friends fight fascist Nurse Nancy to rebuild the holy grail and get a new soul for the earth. Each friend is different. 8-year-old Sam (“Mental Man”) is a mad scientist and inventor; 6-year-old Sophia (“Nature Girl”) is a caretaker of the earth; 300-year-old Blue (a great ballplayer like Satchel Paige) was the keeper of the holy grail in Africa before he and his siblings were captured as slaves. With help from a squadron of ladybugs, they fight the “greed, intolerance, and just plain cruelty” that Nurse Nancy and her demonic crow inhabit. A story of courage, friendship, and love.

 

Tallywacker World Premiere

Director: Brendan Boogie

Country: USA; Running Time: 90 min

A rock and roll buddy comedy about 2 bandmates whose relationship gets tested when one of them gets a gig touring with a major rock star.

 

The Zombie Wedding World Premiere

Director: Micah Khan

Country: USA; Running Time: 99 min

A young Cumberland County, NJ couple decides to go through with their wedding – during the Zombie Apocalypse. Unfortunately, he’s a zombie and she’s not. Both families are fearful, but the humans’ behavior is brutish. When the Zombies begin feeling brain-deprived, the ceremony takes a turn for the weird. Weekly World News reporters are there to cover this wild wedding – while trying to get out alive!

 

 DOCUMENTARY FEATURES

 

44 Lights: Music from Ground Zero                                   

Director: Barbara Blackburn Tuttle

Country: USA; Running Time: 68 min

A musical journey to healing in the aftermath of 9/11. A story of pain, loss, and ultimately rebirth through music.

 

American Pot Story: Oaksterdam

Directors: Dan Katzir and Ravit Markus

Country: USA; Running Time: 97 min

This award-winning documentary is a decade-long follow-up of the underdogs who put their blood, sweat, and tears to overturn a 100-year-old policy, proving in the process that “a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world,” to quote Margaret Mead).

 

Brothers Broken

Directors: Geoff Levin, Lily Richards

Country: USA; Running Time: 86 min

This is the story of brothers Geoff and Robbie Levin, who grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area as part of the 60’s music scene including Jerry Garcia, the Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin. The brother’s band PEOPLE! had the hit record “I Love You” in 1968 and toured with The Who; then Scientology entered their lives destroyed their band and split up the brothers. After 46 years Geoff despite losing his children and friends to the cult, left the church and reunited with his brother and band. It’s a tale of breaking free from a modern-day prison of belief.

 

Denim Hunter                                                                        U.S. Premiere

Director: Emilio Di Stefano

Country: Sweden; Running Time: 87 min

In the road movie documentary Denim Hunter, we meet Viktor – a regular guy from Sweden but with a burning passion for really old jeans. The film follows Viktor on his wild journey through the deserts of California, Arizona, and Nevada as well as up the snowclad Rocky Mountains of Colorado, where he hunts for denim treasures in hazardous run-down gold mines from the 1880s. On his journey, Viktor comes across an array of unlikely desert characters, like Indiana Jeans, Dynamite Dan, and Redneck-Mike. In various ways, they all lead Viktor from one failure to the next.

 

The Depths of My Despair

Director: Elizabeth Lawrence

Country: USA; Running Time: 68 min

The Depths of My Despair is a visceral rabbit hole toward the authentic self. Filmmaker Elizabeth Lawrence takes an emotional, first-person detour inward. Oscillating through saneness and psychosis; debris and lucidity, the film stares at depression dead-on.

 

District Of Second Chances                                                World Premiere

Director: Wynette Yao

Country: USA; Running Time: 76 min

District of Second Chances follows the journeys of three men from Washington, D.C., all sentenced to life in prison during the 1990s. Now, because of sentencing reform, they have a rare chance at release and new lives.

 

Meet Me Where I Am

Director: Grant Garry

Country: USA; Running Time: 86 min

Meet Me Where I Am explores the topic of grief through individual stories of loss, love, and hope. The film aims to normalize grief in our culture and explores how we can actively participate in helping others through grief. By accepting grief and its impact, we hope to help individuals find new meaning as they move forward with their grief.

 

Studio One Forever

Director: Marc Saltarelli

Country: USA; Running Time: 86 min

The untold story of America’s iconic gay disco, a kaleidoscopic excursion into LGBTQ+ history through the lens of this groundbreaking club. From 1974-1994, Studio One and its adjoining live music venue, The Backlot, became symbols of hope and community for gay men during tumultuous times. Amidst the rise of gay rights, disco’s heyday, and the devastating AIDS crisis, the club offered sanctuary from rampant homophobia and police oppression.

 

Torched – The Story of Austin Torch

Director: Hoag Kepner

Country: USA; Running Time: 66 min

Torched tells the story of the Austin Torch, a wild and fiery group of women/non-binary athletes in Austin who are trying to legitimize and professionalize their fringe sport of Ultimate Frisbee in a historically male-dominated sports industry. As we follow the Torch on the road and at home during their 2022 season, we realize that though the Torch might not always win, they never really lose, because it’s more than a team: it’s a movement.

 

 MIDNIGHT FEATURES

 

Sheryl                                                                                     World Premiere

Director: Justin Best

Country: USA; Running Time: 72 min

After she’s dumped by her serial killer boyfriend for not being “hot enough”, a beauty-obsessed woman goes on a bloody quest to create the perfect face, all while navigating her new relationship with the cop investigating the murders.

 

Wild Eyed and Wicked

Director: G.S. Foxwood

Country: USA; Running Time: 99 min

Lily Pierce is sick of being haunted. She decides to reconnect with her estranged father, a disgraced history professor, and learn how to draw upon a time of steel and blade when armor-clad knights rode out and dueled their monsters to the death.

 

 TELEVISION AND WEB SERIES PILOTS

A Killer Service

Director: Gio Randazzo

Country: USA; Running Time: 25 min

The hapless daughter of an incarcerated con-artist finds she has inherited a substantial debt to a dangerous crime boss. Forced into a corner, Elliott discovers how to take control of her life while helping empower other women. 

Awesome

Director: Paul Munger

Country: USA; Running Time: 16 min

Every night, 20-year-old Joy gets a glimpse of the future. But with a dad on parole, a pill-popping boyfriend, and a recent lay-off, that doesn’t mean she can stop it from being shitty. That is until she foresees an event that will ruin the lives of her loved ones forever. She’ll have to figure out how to change her future–or live with the consequences.

The Blind Zone                                     World Premiere 

Directors: Federica Marchese, Vinushu Sundaresan

Country: China; Running Time: 32 min

Battle of wits and violence ensues when the separate worlds of two teenage sociopaths collide after they set their eyes on the same target.

 

East

Director: Dana Marisa Schoenfeld

Country: USA; Running Time: 32 min

When Ella Goldman, a New York City Corporate attorney, gets engaged to her longtime boyfriend, Josh, she is ecstatic to embark on the next stage of her life. With a wedding to plan and a blossoming career, Ella thinks she has it all. But when she suddenly loses her job and catches her boyfriend cheating, her world comes crashing down. This devastating turn of events forces her to confront the truth about her life – and what it is she really wants. Convinced that this is a “wake-up call,” Ella pursues her childhood dream of being an actress. 

Events At Hemlock Manor

Director: Katie North

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

At its core, this is a series about underdogs: a ragtag group of spooky weirdos with nowhere else to go. Hemlock Manor is not only a year-round haunted house with a terrible business model; it’s also a home. But what do you do when the thing you love is in trouble? You fight for it. Even when that means throwing a baby shower for a group of rich ladies who thought “the historic Hemlock Manor” was a charming country villa, not a haunted house open in July.

 

For Years to Come

Director: Micah Stuart

Country: USA; Running Time: 27 min

An irreverent and heartfelt romantic dramedy about a gay man who falls in love with his dead mother’s hospice nurse, while struggling to reconnect with his elderly father…who’s secretly a porn director.

Hit Man: Secrets Of Lies

Director: Elias Plagianos

Country: UK; Running Time: 19 min

A reflective hitman from New York City travels to small towns around the country trying to find meaning in his seemingly inconsequential life as he fulfills his contracts and eliminates his targets. 

Hot Angry Mom                                   

Director: Clarissa De Los Reyes

Country: USA; Running Time: 34 min

A people-pleasing mom must face her rage, as a video of her epic meltdown goes viral.

I Could Eat

Director: Rick Bedrosian

Country: USA; Running Time: 28 min

A new TV/Web Series showcasing the cuisine & music that unites diverse cultures. Host, Rick Bedrosian (“George” in a Beatlemania stage show for 7 years, leader of Celtic music powerhouse, Hair Of The Dog, since 1993 and an international tour guide) spans the globe seeking out the finest food and the most interesting music makers.

L.I.F.E.: It’s Wonderful

Director: Dathan Smith

Country: USA; Running Time: 22 min

L.I.F.E. is an anthology series set in the near future where citizens receive a hand-delivered card notifying them the day they will die. Rose feels trapped in her new “home”. Emilia feels trapped by her daughter’s recent news. Bob is forced to deliver a card he has been dreading since joining L.I.F.E. Corp. as Diane adjusts to her new job.

Moments                                         North American Premiere 

Director: Aaron Lewis

Country: USA; Running Time: 23 min

Moments is a gripping 9-episode digital series, each under 13 minutes, offering intimate glimpses into characters on the brink. Driven by black trauma and mysticism, it unravels mind-reading and hidden truths through therapist Dr. Winston. An enigmatic narrator, Rutina Wesley, introduces time travel, adding layers of self-discovery. Momentshints at an expanded episodic journey, diving deeper into characters’ histories and relationships, while authentically addressing themes of healing and transformation within the mystical. Boasting a stellar ensemble cast and profound storytelling.

 

Morse Code

Director: Travis Nicholson

Country: USA; Running Time: 37 min

In the eccentric community of modern-day East Nashville, Simon, a talented but flawed thirty-something indie folk singer finds himself at a crossroads as he struggles to strike a balance between family and career.

Off The Menu

Director: Daniele Sestito

Country: USA; Running Time: 37 min

“Chef” is a perfectionist, Italian cook who works for an unordinary institution. Typically stern and grandiose, a new side of Chef is revealed when he is forced to make a meal that’s beyond his grasp. 

Q Train

Directors: Dionne Van Den Berg, Samantha Tran

Country: USA; Running Time: 10 min

A Brooklyn based DJ explores the queer dating scene.

Roboto

Directors: Mari Madrid, Keone Madrid

Country: USA; Running Time: 18 min

Ky loses his entire career as a highly successful choreographer when AI takes over the dance industry and the world by storm. This throws Ky into suicidal ideations until Mikah, a bright and optimistic 12-year-old boy, decides to disregard the latest craze of dancing with Roboto and instead asks Ky to choreograph for his school performance. While at first Ky reluctantly decides to help the kid, he begins to find a bit of light in his life again. And when it’s revealed that Mikah had a battle with cancer Ky’s perspective is completely shifted.

The Selectman                                       World Premiere 

Director: David Antonio Martin

Country: USA; Running Time: 26 min

In the wake of Selectman Joseph Allenby’s untimely death, this absurd comedy begins amid a memorial service in the small town of Picasquiddy, Maine. Subverting the idyllic nature of small-town New England, our protagonists are trapped in a picturesque world where the forces of learned behavior, arrested adolescence, and the quest for power forever collide. As two unlikely successors emerge as candidates for the Board of Selectmen, the town’s fate hangs in the balance. Does anybody have what it takes?

Travel Fox                                         World Premiere 

Director: Henk Pretorius

Country: UK; Running Time: 5 min

Get ready for a wild adventure in Travel Fox, the pilot episode of an animated series tailor-made for curious kids. Follow the inquisitive Travel Fox and Bogie the Tortoise as they race across the world, chasing rainbows in search of a legendary pot of gold. But here’s the twist – instead of gold, our friends discover something even more precious: a treasure trove of unique characters and unforgettable experiences.

 

Ülom: The Primary Experiment                        World Premiere 

Director: Jon Da

Country: USA; Running Time: 25 min

In Ülom, one can find anything, even meaning. A desperate scientist undertakes a labyrinthian experiment he believes will locate his missing daughter. Journeying ever deeper into the labyrinth, he must confront an invasive, fictional reality. Remember: what feels real, is real. Ülom is here.

Xander                                           World Premiere 

Director: Jonathan Chao

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

When lonely high school student Luke befriends Xander the Genie, he’s forced to consider if making his one wish is worth losing his new genie best friend.

 

 NARRATIVE SHORTS

 

(In)Convenience

Director: Alexandra Greenspan

Country: USA; Running Time: 12 min

 

#Pizzagate World Premiere

Director: Danny Piñeros

Country: USA; Running Time: 8 min

 

The 1971 Kitchen Grand Brie

Director: Ian Beckman

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

Bisected                                                                                 World Premiere

Director: Danny Piñeros

Country: USA; Running Time: 8 min

 

Black Silk                                                                               World Premiere

Director: Patrick Michael

Country: USA; Running Time: 16 min

 

Blight                                                                                      World Premiere

Director: Markus Hoeckner

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

Bloodworm                                                                            World Premiere

Director: Kai Wen

Country: USA; Running Time: 13 min

 

Bounce House

Directors: Callie Bloem, Christopher Ewing

Country: USA; Running Time: 16 min

 

Burraco                                                                                  World Premiere

Director: Isabella Tagliati

Country: Italy; Running Time: 14 min

 

Candice

Director: Tyler Martin

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

Career Day

Directors: Jason Robinson, Chris Hooper

Country: USA; Running Time: 10 min

 

Chauncey                                                                               World Premiere

Director: Reilly Anspaugh & Daniel Rashid

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

Cheol                                                                                      World Premiere

Director: Yeajoon Cho

Country: USA; Running Time: 19 min

 

Church Camp

Director: Andrew Bourne

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

The Chat                                                                                World Premiere

Writer/Dir/Prod: Artie Brennan

Country: USA; Running Time: 6 min

 

Clownfish

Director: Clayton Henderson

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

Dear Owner

Director: Jing Ai Ng

Country: USA; Running Time: 17 min

 

Delta World Premiere

Director: Jonathan Coleman

Country: USA; Running Time: 9 min

 

Detox

Director: Alex Hanno

Country: USA; Running Time: 19 min

 

Dropping

Director: Rj Collins

Country: USA; Running Time: 10 min

 

Echoes Of My Father                                                            World Premiere

Directors: Junko Kajino, Ed M Koziarski

Country: USA, Japan; Running Time: 18 min

 

The Electro-Rocker

Director: Chris Edgar

Country: USA; Running Time: 17 min

 

Entrainment

Director: Bill Prokopow

Country: USA; Running Time: 12 min

 

Esperance To Fremantle                                                     World Premiere

Director: William Sebastian Turner

Country: Australia; Running Time: 18 min

 

Everything Goes Dark                                                          International Premiere

Director: Alex Casimir

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

Fate Vs. Elena                                                                       World Premiere

Director: Laura Sedlak

Country: USA; Running Time: 23 min

 

From The Dark                                                                      North American Premiere

Director: Erika Sanz

Country: USA; Running Time: 7 min

 

Hot Soda

Director: Nello Digiandomenico

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

How To Disappear                                                                World Premiere

Director: Milton Woods

Country: USA; Running Time: 20 min

 

I Keep Bumping into Candy Maldonado                            World Premiere

Director: Luke Black

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

In The Quiet                                                                           World Premiere

Director: Merle Dandridge

Country: USA; Running Time: 5 min

 

Interracial Couple In A Cheerios Ad

Director: Christine Lakin

Country: USA; Running Time: 4 min

 

The Invaders

Director: Erin Doyle Cooper

Country: USA; Running Time: 4 min

 

Itch                                                                                         World Premiere

Director: Mohammad Anwerzada

Countries: Pakistan/Canada; Running Time: 9 min

 

Letters To the Wind                                                              World Premiere

Director: Terrence Shu

Country: USA; Running Time: 13 min

 

Lux Freer

Director: Cynthia Gibb

Country: USA; Running Time: 21 min

 

Man Baby                                                                               World Premiere

Director: Aaron Murtagh

Country: USA; Running Time: 10 min

 

Music For A While                                                                World Premiere

Director: Kelvin Z. Phillips

Country: USA; Running Time: 6 min

 

Nearly Never                                                                          North American Premiere

Director: Peter Franklyn Banks

Country: UK; Running Time: 15 min

 

Newbie

Director: James Skinner

Country: UK; Running Time: 8 min

 

Portrait Of a Cowboy

Director: Devon Wycoff

Country: USA; Running Time: 17 min

 

Pretty As a Picture                                                               World Premiere

Director: Ryan Nielsen

Country: USA; Running Time: 8 min

 

The Pros And Cons Of Killing Yourself                             World Premiere

Director: Ravi Steve Khajuria

Country: Canada; Running Time: 21 min

 

Piano Man                                                                              

Director: Jay Zaretsky

Country: USA; Running Time: 20 min

 

Purgy’s

Director: Robbie Bryan

Country: USA; Running Time: 16 min

 

Rattled                                                                                    World Premiere

Director: Adam Linkenhelt

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

Red, White And Blue

Director: Nazrin Choudhury

Country: USA; Running Time: 23 min

 

Revelation                                                                             World Premiere

Director: Libe Barer

Country: USA; Running Time: 16 min

 

Room 107                                                                              World Premiere

Directors: Steve Anderson, Leandro Imaz

Country: USA; Running Time: 17 min

 

Sane Men

Director: Jess Fritz

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

Skateboard                                                                            World Premiere

Director: Peyton Michelle Edwards

Country: USA; Running Time: 7 min

 

Sonshine                                                                                International Premiere

Director: Corey Podell

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

Speak Up Brotha!

Director: Wes Andre Goodrich

Country: USA; Running Time: 15 min

 

Sugar                                                                                      World Premiere

Director: Alyssa Brayboy

Country: USA; Running Time: 6 min

 

Three Ways Out                                                                    World Premiere

Director: Lizzie Morgan

Country: USA; Running Time: 13 min

 

Tips Up!                                                                                 World Premiere

Director: Leah Claire Borrie

Country: USA; Running Time: 7 min

 

Tossou                                                                                   World Premiere

Directors: Melisande Mclaughlin, Sika Stanton

Country: USA; Running Time: 3 min

 

Used Chairs For Sale                                                           World Premiere

Director: Dylan Paffe

Countries: USA/Canada; Running Time: 14 min

 

We Love You Ray                                                                 World Premiere

Director: John Hays

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

You Need To Process This

Director: Eleanor Morrison

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

 DOCUMENTARY SHORTS

 

13 Driver’s Licenses

Director: Ryoya Terao

Countries: USA/Germany; Running Time: 27 min

 

Brothers For Life World Premiere

Director: Alon Juwal

Country: Israel; Running Time: 17 min

 

The Dancer: The Beautiful and Tragic Life Of Gerard Alexander

Directors: Ryon Horne, Tyson Horne

Country: USA; Running Time: 35 min

 

Family Trip                                                                            World Premiere

Director: Sean Dunne

Country: USA; Running Time: 26 min

 

Finding Fate

Director: Beth Toni Kruvant

Country: USA; Running Time: 28 min

 

How I Roll                                                                              World Premiere

Directors: Brianne Berkson, Miguel Gluckstern, BriGuel

Country: USA; Running Time: 13 min

 

I Can’t Give You Anything But Love World Premiere

Director: Susan Morgan Cooper

Country: USA; Running Time: 34 min

 

Kristin Dan Kuching Kuchingnya

Director: Michael Kam

Country: Singapore; Running Time: 6 min

 

Living Loud                                                                           World Premiere

Directors: Carin van der Donk, Isabella Vega, Sarah Teale

Country: USA; Running Time: 40 min

 

Paper Boats

Director: Jessica Pons

Country: USA; Running Time: 5 min

 

Rebirth                                                                                   World Premiere

Director: Olivia Burgess

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

Revealing The Impossible World Premiere

Directors: Tony Chong and Marlene Millar

Country: Canada; Running Time: 29 min

 

 

This Is Why We Train: The Sea Girt Beach Patrol            World Premiere

Director: Kevin Nulty

Country: USA; Running Time: 20 min

 

Tracing Imperfection World Premiere

Director: Chehade Boulos

Country: USA; Running Time: 8 min

 

Where Is America the Beautiful?

Director: Fr3der1ck

Country: USA; Running Time: 30 min

 

 MIDNIGHT SHORTS

 

Bastard                                                                                  World Premiere

Directors: Haley Elise Pehrson, Gretta Wilson

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

The Custodian

Director: Colin J. Mason

Country: USA; Running Time: 9 min

 

D.O.D.

Director: Paul Davis

Country: USA; Running Time: 18 min

 

Dedly Wagons                                                                       World Premiere

Director: Martin Balaguer

Country: USA; Running Time: 4 min

 

Good Girls Get Fed

Director: Kelly Lou Dennis

Country: USA; Running Time: 21 min

 

Hevel                                                                                      World Premiere

Director: David Grace

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

Inner Demons                                                                        World Premiere

Director: Jasmine J, Johnson

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

The Mantis

Director: Wylie Rush

Country: USA; Running Time: 10 min

 

Mattress Express

Director: Noah Morse

Country: USA; Running Time: 18 min

 

Night Shift

Director: Karlee Boon

Country: USA; Running Time: 28 min

 

Pee Pee Platter

Director: Jon Conklin

Country: USA; Running Time: 11 min

 

The Spirit Became Flesh                                                     World Premiere

Writer/Director: Jesse Aultman

Country: USA; Running Time: 18 min

 

The Worm                                                                              World Premiere

Director: Cameron A. Tubbs

Country: USA; Running Time: 14 min

 

 

 ABOUT DANCES WITH FILMS

Now in its 26th year, Dances With Films champions the unflinching spirit at the very core of the independent film scene. With most film festivals relying heavily on celebrity, we have relied on innovation, talent, creativity, and sweat equity that revolutionized the entertainment industry. And that reliance continues to prove successful with alumni moving on to write, direct, and produce celebrity-studded vehicles, star in blockbuster movies, and television series, produce multi-million-dollar film and create hot TV shows. 

Huge Genre News: NIGHTSTREAM is back in new form!

Digital Genre Film Fest NIGHTSTREAM Relaunched Yesterday as Year Round Curated TVOD Platform, Ft. Exclusive Title SUMMONERS, Films from Distros Including Oscilloscope, Utopia, Dark Sky & More


Christine Nyland and Larry Fessenden from Nightstream Exclusive SUMMONERS


(Brooklyn, NY | October 31, 2023) The Brooklyn Horror Film Festival, in association with the Boston Underground Film Festival and the Overlook Film Festival, announces today the re-launch of Nightstream. The former virtual film festival will re-launch as a transactional VOD platform that will showcase acclaimed genre films. Nightstream enables at-home audiences to have a one-stop-shop for their favorite (and new discovery) genre indies in lieu of scrolling through offerings buried in other more overarching platforms. Viewers can expect the lineup to continue to grow over time but always remain curated by the festival programmers.

Nightstream was initially launched in 2020 when film festivals were shuttered at the height of the pandemic. These major horror festivals joined forces to satiate their audiences’ appetites for new, exciting titles even while they were stuck at home. Despite the fact that the world is back in action, Nightstream will give genre fans the curated festival experience 24/7.

Terence Krey and Christine Nyland, the filmmaking team behind 2020’s indie gem An Unquiet Grave, unveil Summoners as the very first Nightstream Exclusive. The film made its world premiere at Brooklyn Horror Festival last year and debuts exclusively on the platform as a launch title. Co-starring indie icon Larry Fessenden, the film focuses on a former witch who is plunged back into a world of witchcraft far more dangerous than ever before after her childhood friend seeks her help in performing a dark spell.

Spearheading the relaunch is Justin Timms, Director of Brooklyn Horror Film Festival. “Finding a way to support new indie films along with keeping our collective festivals afloat during the pandemic was our priority and I’m thrilled that we can continue that for the long term,” says Timms. “Not only will we be sharing revenue with the films on the channel but a portion of the proceeds will also be split among the other founding festivals. We hope audiences around the country will see the value in supporting this effort and choose Nightstream when renting one of these standout titles.”

As of today’s Halloween launch day, the platform will feature over thirty titles, including those from indie distributors Oscilloscope, Dark Star, Dark Sky, Dekanalog, Utopia, Yellow Veil Pictures, and others. Titles include Jane Schoenbrun’s We’re All Going to World’s Fair (Utopia), Gaspar Noe’s Lux Aeterna (Yellow Veil), Joel PotrykusBuzzard (Oscilloscope), and much more. The full listing of film offerings is available at nightstream.org.

Prices will vary per title, and users will have the option to rent or buy most titles with a default pricing of $4.99 to rent and $12.99 to buy.

Full information is available at:
https://nightstream.org/

About Nightstream
In response to the many challenges impacting the film community amid the Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing concerns of safety and security associated with physical exhibition and festivals in 2020 and 2021, the collaborative online event NIGHTSTREAM was launched by organizers of a number of American genre festivals across the country to present a dynamic and accessible virtual film festival.

NIGHTSTREAM will live on, continuing as a curated hub for genre films where audiences across the US will be able to rent, buy and discover the latest indie films.

About Brooklyn Horror Film Festival
Bringing the best of domestic and international genre cinema to New York City since 2016, the Brooklyn Horror Film Festival is a premier East Coast genre festival that embodies the eclectic spirit of its namesake.

Brooklyn Horror not only provides the nightmare fuel that audiences expect but also prides itself on challenging those expectations, spotlighting films that push the boundaries of what is normally deemed horror.

Taking place in venues throughout the borough every October, BHFF compliments its ambitious features and shorts programming with exciting and unique live events, crafting a must-attend festival experience for industry members and film fans alike.


 

Review: Festival favorite ‘QUANTUM COWBOYS’ continues to wow wordlwide.

QUANTUM COWBOYS

A mixed media extravaganza, Geoff Marslett‘s genre-obliterating QUANTUM COWBOYS is an indie film fan’s dream. Two drifters find themselves in a time warp as they attempt to help a local woman reclaim her land and right a wrong.

Various animation styles change from scene to scene, from hand-drawn to greenscreen, live-action to stop motion layer and mesmerize, forcing the audience to sit up and pay attention. QUANTUM COWBOYS‘ narrative timeline loops and shifts to give our protagonists a chance at redemption. Butterfly effects cling to each of them as “Memory” plays the storyteller and provides second chances disguised as a mysterious stone arc. This clever device keeps the audience enthralled, wondering how this might end.

The cast boasts faces familiar and iconic. Kiowa Gordon and John Way shine alongside David Arquette and Lily Gladstone ( a near-future Oscar winner IMHO). This one-of-a-kind film will undoubtedly delight with its wacky and meta climax. QUANTUM COWBOYS is an ambitious film that, while currently planned as a trilogy, could easily transition to a series at a major studio. Marslett gives audiences a choose-your-own-adventure-style story whose possibilities are endless.

Quantum Cowboys STREAMING TRAILER from Geoff Marslett on Vimeo.

The movie stars Lily Gladstone (about to break big in Killers of the Flower Moon), Kiowa Gordon (Twilight, Dark Winds), John Way (A Love Song), David Arquette (Scream), Frank Mosley (Upstream Color), and supporting roles by Neko Case (musician), Gary Farmer (Reservation Dogs, Dead Man), Alex Cox (Repo Man, Sid and Nancy), Trieste Kelly Dunn (Banshee, Loves Her Gun), John Doe (X, Roadhouse), Anna Karina (Alphaville, French New Wave), Patrick Page (Broadway star of Hadestown), Devon Wycoff, Antonio Jeffries, Geoff Marslett, Jesse Lee Pacheco and Howe Gelb (musician).

The film has played over 40 international film festivals (including Annecy, Fantastic Fest, Vancouver, Champs Elysees and Atlanta) and won awards at 9 festivals and runner ups and nominations at 6 more.

TRT: 99 minutes
Completion date June 2022


Filmed in 16mm film, 8K digital, Hand Drawn Animation, Paper Cutl Outs, Oil Paintings,
Digital Collage, CGI and Computer Painting

On set for QUANTUM COWBOYS with David Arquette and director Geoff Marslett.

Directors Bio:
Geoff Marslett (born in Texas) is an animator, director, writer, producer and actor. His work
often revolves around the romance of connection and the way exploring your universe changes
you and the place you explore. He grew up a cowboy with an interest in physics, and has
worked in both construction and science before becoming a filmmaker. He adores feral cats and
still genuinely loves making things.
He splits his time between teaching at the University of Colorado and making his own films.

Animators and Artists:
ARTLESS MEDIA
Anna Bradley McCall
Hannah McSwiggen
Russell Schaeffer

MINNOW MOUNTAIN
Nathan Bayless
Inaya C. Bialik
Blue Bliss
Rachel Dendy
Dean Hsieh
Christopher S. Jennings
Leyla Mamedova
Annie B McCall
Craig Staggs
Steph Swope
Lindsey Taylor
Julia Zipporah

SWERVE PICTURES
Myles Aquino
JD Arredondo
Sebastian Bisbal
Javier Bonafont
Madeleine Capen
Gina Marie Cercone
Sarah Connor
Joana Correia
Maxine Curva
Owen DeGroot
Stephan Fonseca
Amanda Julina Gonzalez
Alex Grey
Conner Hagan

Kiera Hagen-Brenner
Mitchell Hawley
Shunsaku Hayashi
Tazio Hilbert
Claire Hsieh
Natalie Johns
Jacq Kirkman
Nic Koller
Michelle Li
Geoff Marslett
Gen Mbesi
Holiday McAllister
Jefferson Melo
Rachel Merrill
Ailin Mo
Xuan Nguyen
Tim Nolte
Rhea Patel
Lucy Scherrer
Leon Simone
Laura Spicer
Sean Tredway
David Vieira
Matthew Wade
Rosie Di Wu
Isaias Yetemegn

MYSTERY MEAT MEDIA
Ri Crawford

All Compositing, Animation Design and
Direction by
Geoff Marslett


 

Review: Corey Stanton’s ‘TRADER’ is the ultimate disruptor.

TRADER

Trader posterA manipulative sociopath armed with a dangerously ambitious spirit, her wits, and an affinity for snorting wasabi voyages into the high-intensity game of stock market trading and wages war against the financial world. When she stumbles upon news of a monumental pharmaceutical trade, she risks everything to complete her ultimate success story no matter the cost.


The script is structured like chapters of a commerce self-help book, not unlike the ones my husband consumes, even ten years deep into the IB world in Manhattan, now top of the food chain. Day trading is grittier, riskier, and with your own dollars, not those of an often faceless whale. TRADER understands the real-life dynamics and injects a magical realism that plays as the trader’s innermost thoughts and motivation. It also directly tackles market manipulation. It’s nothing short of ingenious.

Kimberly-Sue Murray owns every second of screen time. Her manic energy drives the narrative like a runaway freight train. The character is slick, interested only in the genuine long con. Murray masters everything from various accents to grounded emotional release through interpretive dance. She truly is the smartest person in the room. Filmmaker Corey Stanton gives the trader a backstory that slowly reveals itself, adding a new level to the complexity of TRADER. Just when you think you’ve got the story pegged, think again. TRADER is relentlessly tense. It is a conspiracy theorist’s wet dream. 

TRADER is a one-woman show. I would love to see this live onstage, to feel the energy in person. TRADER is an indictment of capitalism and how, with the aid of the internet, the combination of the two may be the undoing of society. This twisted film is a one-of-a-kind ride. It’s an ever-evolving endgame that sucks you in. Don’t forget to unclench your jaw and draw a breath while you watch. TRADER is the ultimate disruptor.

The New Thriller from Filmmaker Corey Stanton

TRADER

Hits U.S. VOD Nationwide on August 10th!


 About XYZ Films 
XYZ Films is an independent studio whose mission is to empower visionary storytellers from every corner of the planet. XYZ was founded in 2008 by Nate Bolotin, Nick Spicer, and Aram Tertzakian and has expanded in recent years into documentary, talent management, and distribution. Some of the company’s classic titles include THE RAID franchise, 2017 Sundance winner I DON’T FEEL AT HOME IN THIS WORLD ANYMORE, and Panos Cosmatos’ psychedelic revenge thriller MANDY.


 

Fantasia 2023 shorts program review: The biting brilliance in ‘BORN OF WOMAN’ wows again.

Fantasia Festival 2023 logo

BORN OF WOMAN

(2023 shorts program)

Born of Woman 2023 banner

Fantasia’s top-tier showcase of intimate auteur genre visions returns with eight works from six countries that will leave you shaken and amazed. 


Sayani

A crashed pilot seeks a way out of her unfamiliar and harsh surroundings. As her hopes of rescue fade, memories become her saving grace and doom. This beautifully lit short takes advantage of its pace. A final reveal shocks.


Se Dit D’un Cerf Qui Quitte Son (Said of a Deer That Sheds Its Antlers)

A black comedy version of The Lottery, this film kills off its eldest family members, and everyone is cool with it. This laugh-out-loud absurdist short had me grinning uncontrollably. Salomé Crickx has a real winner here.

Only Yourself To Blame

In a sharp look at rape trauma and its eternal demons, filmmaker Noomi Yates‘ 8-minute short creates a powerful statement that speaks volumes.

Sweet Tooth poster 2023Les Dents Du Bonheur (Sweet Tooth)

What begins as a bring your daughter to work story quickly spirals to a darkly absurdist commentary on class. The production design and cinematography have you believe this short is a timeless French narrative drama. Director Joséphibe Darcy Hopkins takes us down the rabbit hole of deranged power structure, revenge, and respect.

The Taster

A near-future scenario plays the backdrop for director Sophia Bierend‘s Fantasia short. A young woman becomes the official taster for a high-ranking general. Learning about the recent demise of her predecessor, her insight into the fearmongering of her new environment grows clearer. Mandy Peterat‘s production design is top-notch. THE TASTER is one hell of a treatment for a feature. It screams franchise development.

Madeline Brewer in PRUNING
PRUNING

Nian

Racism and folklore come together for a sweet tongue-in-cheek revenge tale from Michelle Krusiec. It is a satisfyingly smirk-inducing addition to the program.

Mancha

Writer-director Nicole Mejia‘s visual metaphor for generational trauma comes to life through a beautiful combination of Seth Macmillian’s camerawork, Alain Emile’s music, and performances. Its inevitability haunts you.


Fantasia 2023 review: ‘PIAFFE’ is a surprising tale of obsession, sexual awakening, and otherness.

Fantasia Festival 2023 logo

PIAFFE

Piaffe posterEva takes over as a Foley artist for her hospitalized sibling Zara. With no knowledge or self-esteem for the task, Eva endures shockingly abusive behavior from every angle; Zara, her boss, and the hospital nurse. When threatened with dismissal from Zara’s position, she becomes obsessed with the assigned commercial clip.

The video features a horse. Upon visiting a stable for research, Eva’s determination to perfect the audio ignites an immersive approach. Her relentless work ethic causes Eva to grow a horsetail. As she embraces her newfound appendage, Eva becomes entangled with a Botonist who opens her eyes to different forms of pleasure, increasing her confidence and sparking her sexual awakening.

PIAFFE gives audiences a fever dream of imagery and sound. Music is an eclectic Giallo-inspired mix of ominous cello and techno. The color Red features symbolically in lipstick, a telephone, tinsel, roses, and lighting. Simone Bucio is fearless as Eva. Her palpable anxiety and social awkwardness pour off the screen, making her relatable in the most unexpected ways.

The real star of PIAFFE is Robert Hefter and Jonas Vincent‘s jarring augmented sound mixing. As a viewer with Sensory Processing Disorder, PIAFFE is equal parts hair-raising nightmare and auditory orgasm. The sparse dialogue contributes to the focus on the heightened sound. Writer-director Ann Oren celebrates otherness in all its forms. Fantasia 2023 audiences experienced a sensory explosion with an unpredictable complexity.

Oscilloscope Labs will release PIAFFE on August 25th


Shot on lush 16mm, PIAFFE is a visceral journey into control, gender, and artifice.

The film will open in New York on August 25th at The Quad Cinema and in Los Angeles on September 15th at Landmark’s Nuart Theatre.

DIRECTED BY ANN OREN

STARRING SIMONE BUCIO, SIMON(E) JAIKIRIUMA PAETAU,

and SEBASTIAN RUDOLPH

SCREENINGS:
Mon August 07, 2023
2:15 PM

Salle J.A. De Sève

Fantasia 2023 review: ‘HOME INVASION’ is one of the year’s most upsetting films.

HOME INVASION

Home Invasion stillUtterly fascinating, this documentary horror hybrid effectively puts the fear of God into the audience. The film begins by sharing the history of each incarnation of what we now refer to as the “Ring” security camera, each inspired by a recurring nightmare. Historical recounting gets the creepy treatment with a random subject’s security footage playing in its fisheye lens version behind the storytelling text. There is no formal dialogue. This voyeuristic nightmare is unlike anything we’ve seen before, featuring videos of everything from natural disasters to doorstep theft and animal encounters to delivery people behaving badly and creatively.

The score is bone-chilling, with its piano cords striking. It’s something straight out of hell. But, the film is even scarier than it initially appears when we learn the global and societal impact of advancing technology. Cinematic tropes alone reflect the world’s potential terror. Fantasia 2023 audiences get a taste of a film that would be a perfect Fall statement at MoMA. HOME INVASION is exceedingly disturbing. If anything, it reminds you how quickly the scales of good and evil tip. It will haunt you.


Official selection – Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival 2023
Berlin International Film Festival 2023
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria 2023

DIRECTOR

Graeme Arnfield

PRODUCER

Graeme Arnfield

WRITER

Graeme Arnfield

SOUND DESIGNER

Sarah Naylor, Baudoin Oosterlynck

EDITOR

Graeme Arnfield

Fantasia 2023 review: ‘RESTORE POINT’ is life and death against progress and profit.

Fantasia Festival 2023 logoRESTORE POINT

It’s the year 2041, and humanity has reached the point where it can cheat death. Anyone who dies an unnatural death has the right to be brought back to life. All you have to do is to create a backup of your personality – a restore point – at least every forty-eight hours. But there exists a movement of people who try to sabotage this concept. “Agent Em” finds herself drawn into a case that is not as simple as it first seemed and the consequences of which reach to the highest levels of politics.


A wildly original premise and magnificent worldbuilding send Fantasia audiences headfirst into Robert Hloz‘s sci-fi crime thriller RESTORE POINT. It is 2041, and citizens have gained the right to resurrection if they die an unnatural death, as long as they have backed up their personalities and memories within 48 hrs. This information remains in the cloud. Following the murder of one of the lead scientists and his wife, a detective with a vendetta comes on board to discover corruption on every level.

I kept thinking about the franchise potential of this story. RESTORE POINT’s visual epicness from production designer Ondrej Lipensky is stunning. More reminiscent of Total Recall and Minority Report and less punk rock neon than Blade Runner. Aside from the overarching and mind-blowing plot device, it feels like a logically progressing technological surrounding. Costuming is beautifully subtle, punctuated by small angular details, predominantly around the collars and tailoring.

Matej Hádek plays David with an intentional glitchiness. The physical and emotional choices draw you into the mystery. Andrea Mohylová brings humanity that grounds her performance. You can see the gears turning, the struggle between the personal and principles of the case. Mohylová is badass, effortlessly carrying the action. She is extraordinarily watchable. As a duo, they are inarguably compelling.

The film is a commentary on automation and morality, progress, and profitability. It makes you think. It is a carefully crafted tale filled fueled by both greed and the greater good of humanity. RESTORE POINT will wow Fantasia 2023 audiences, forcing them to answer more than one “what if” long after the credit roll.