Monthly Archives August 2018

The Cleaning Lady

Director: Jon Knautz

Writer: Alexis Kendra, Jon Knautz

Cast: Alexis Kendra, Rachel Alig, Stelio Savante, Mykayla Sohn, JoAnne McGrath

Cert: 18 (TBC)

Running time: 90mins

Year: 2018


 


What’s the story: Miserable in an affair with a married man, Alice (Kendra) befriends reclusive, facially scarred cleaning woman Shelley (Alig). But, some scars run deep beneath the surface.

What’s the verdict: We take a lot for granted in the motivations of those around us, but what do we really know about the people we let into our lives and homes?

What might they want from us? In the case of Shelly, the eponymous cleaning lady in Jon Knautz’s psychological horror, all she wants is to help you to be your best self.

Alice (Kendra) may be beautiful and live in an opulent uptown apartment building, bu...

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Cop This! Mike Mort Talks Chuck Steel: Night of the Trampires

Mike Mort’s infectiously fun mash-up of 80s action clichés and horror tropes has been a pet-project years in the making. Chuck Steel himself (imagine Dirty Harry without the sensitivity training) has been percolating with the writer/director since his teens.

The 14-minute short Chuck Steel: Raging Balls of Steel Justice played the festival circuit in 2013 and set the template for Steel’s feature debut. Lovingly detailed Claymation style stop-motion animation, violent splatter, unabashedly un-PC jokes broad enough that no-one should take to Twitter…!

We sat down with Mort to discuss the making of his glorious mash-up of Wallace and Gromit and Stallone’s Cobra. 


Rob Daniel: I had a blast with Chuck Steel: Night of the Trampires...

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The Ranger

Director: Jenn Wexler

Writer: Giaco Furino, Jenn Wexler

Cast: Chloe Levine, Jeremy Holm, Granit Lahu, Amanda Grace Benitez

Cert: 15 (TBC)

Running time: 77mins

Year: 2018


 


What’s the story: A gang of punks flee to the woods in upstate New York after a violent run-in with law enforcement. But, Chelsea (Levine) has history with the park’s ranger (Holm), a man with a rigid attitude to enforcing the rules.

What’s the verdict: Jenn Wexler scores a horror home run with her confident directorial debut. Equal parts Green Room, Friday the 13th and The Blair Witch Project, The Ranger rises above empty pastiche due to Wexler’s deft shuffling of tones and Chloe Levine’s nuanced lead performance.

A disquieting pre-credits prologue opens in a vast national park...

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Frankenstein’s Creature

Director: Sam Ashurst

Writer: James Swanton

Cast: James Swanton

Cert: TBC

Running time: 91mins

Year: 2018




What’s the story: In a dilapidated house, Frankenstein’s Creature recounts the events of his life.

What’s the verdict: Frankenstein directed by the alien from Under the Skin provides a sense of what to expect from Sam Ashurst’s singular directorial debut.

Based on lead actor James Swanton’s one-man play and told exclusively from the Creature’s point of view, this demands your attention for the full 91-minute run time. Yet, for those willing to take the journey, Frankenstein’s Creature is an extraordinary experience.

Film critic turned filmmaker Ashurst elects to shoot in a single fixed take, locked on the recess of a derelict house in which the Creature recounts his...

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Dark Alchemy – Sam Ashurst Talks Frankenstein’s Creature

 

Perhaps the most unusual film playing at FrightFest 2018 is Sam Ashurst’s singular directorial debut, Frankenstein’s Creature. Based on a one-man play by the film’s star James Swanton, it is a breathtaking experience.

Set in the ruins of an unnamed house and shot in a single, fixed take, this is the Frankenstein story as told exclusively from the Creature’s point of view.

Ashurst was good enough to give up a chunk of one Saturday afternoon to discuss his memorable creation. Being a working film critic, this meant a conversation steeped in movie knowledge. And if you like the below, we recommend you check out the Arrow Video podcast the director co-hosts with special effects artist Dan Martin.

It was a lengthy, rewarding conversation, ranging from the practicalities of shooting l...

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Ranger Danger – Jenn Wexler On Creating Horror’s New Bad Boy

Currently making an impact on the festival circuit, Jenn Wexler’s The Ranger is a horror home-run. When a gang of punks run foul of the law they flee to a cabin in the nearby woods. But soon discover the laws of nature are governed by a terrifying park ranger with a lethal zero tolerance policy on infractions.

Deftly working in elements of Green Room, The Blair Witch Project and Friday the 13th, it rises above mere pastiche due to Wexler’s deft direction and great performances from Chloe Levine as the troubled Chelsea and Jeremy Holm, larger than life as the titular park official.

A horror movie producer for Glass Eye Pix, The Ranger is Wexler’s directorial debut...

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