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Arrow Video FrightFest 2019 Round-Up

The Arrow Video FrightFest 2019 came, delighted and went. Let us take time to reflect upon a fantastic 20th anniversary weekend for the UK’s premiere horror film festival. Indulge us as we run through memorable moments from the weekend and the movies that played.


THE BUCKET LIST MOMENT – Dario Argento Interview and Signing

For FrightFest’s 20th anniversary, it was fitting that undisputed maestro of terror Dario Argento was in attendance. Watching an Argento movie at a formative age is the reason many of us have dedicated so much time to the genre. For the record, my movie was Suspiria, viewed age 14 when I should have been revising. I regret nothing…

Dario Argento joined the festival for a one-day appointment on Friday 23rd, supporting the English langu...

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Must-See Movies at FrightFest 2019

Horror fans will rejoice (and possibly feel a little old) this August Bank Holiday. The legendary Arrow Video FrightFest is marking twenty bloody good years of terror… and it is doing it in style.

From Thursday 22nd August to Monday 26th August the Arrow Video FrightFest will host an astonishing seventy-eight movies, a record-breaking number for the event. Celebrating horror from around the globe, FrightFest will bring films from fourteen countries to the Cineworld and Prince Charles Cinema in London’s Leicester Square.

There are 20 world premieres, 20 International or European premieres and 28 UK premieres. Make no mistake, this is horror so fresh the blood is still wet…



Highlights include opening film Come To Daddy, Ant Timpson’s chiller starring Elijah Wo...

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Suspiria (2018)

Director: Luca Guadagnino

Writers: David Kajganich (script), Dario Argento, Daria Nicolodi (1977 script)

Cast: Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton Angela Winkler, Lutz Ebersdorf, Mia Goth, Chloë Grace Moretz

Cert: 18

Running time: 152mins

Year: 2018



What’s the story: 1977, Berlin. Susie Bannion (Johnson) arrives at the Markos Dance Academy, not knowing it is run by witches.

What’s the verdict: Remake Suspiria at your peril was the consensus opinion. Director David Gordon Green realised that and abandoned his attempt, having more success with 2018’s Halloween remake-sequel. Darren Aronofsky paid homage in Black Swan rather than tackling head-on.

Dario Argento’s 1977 horror masterpiece is too delirious, too of-a-moment, too one-man’s-vision to be effectively replicated decades later...

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Videoman

Director: Kristian A. Söderström

Writer: Kristian A. Söderström

Cast: Stefan Sauk, Lena Nilsson, Amanda Ooms, Martin Wallström, Sven Wollter, Carolin Stoltz

Cert: 18

Running time: 93mins

Year: 2018



What’s the story: Former video store owner Ennio (Sauk) begins to doubt his friends when a valuable VHS that could solve his money problems is stolen.

What’s the verdict: A surprisingly touching examination of late middle-age regret, Videoman is a slippery debut from Swedish writer/director Kristian A. Söderström. Part Ken Loach or Aki Kaurismäki social drama, part giallo thriller, it takes a sensitive look at curdled nostalgia and obsession.

Ennio lives in the basement of a snowy Gothenburg apartment block...

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The Night Sitter

Director: Abiel Bruhn, John Rocco

Writers: Abiel Bruhn, John Rocco

Cast: Elyse Dufour, Jack Champion, Bailey Campbell, Joe Walz

Cert: 15

Running time: 88mins

Year: 2018



What’s the story: Christmas time. Amber (Dufour) is hired to babysit Kevin (Champion), the nervy son of wannabe paranormal TV host Ted (Walz). Along with her friends, Amber plans to rob Ted’s house. But, their plans go awry when three vengeful witches are accidentally summoned.

What’s the verdict: Horror film babysitters typically endure a rough ride to the end credits. If they reach them at all.

The Night Sitter’s Amber, spiritedly played by Elyse Dufour, also must run a gauntlet of mayhem and bloodshed. But, she faces her tormentors with the punk sass of someone who begins the film believing they are the bad g...

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Crystal Eyes

Director: Ezequiel Endelman, Leandro Montejano

Writers: Ezequiel Endelman, Leandro Montejano

Cast: Anahi Politi, Camila Pizzo, Silvia Montanari, Victoria Del Rosal, Augustina Del Rosal

Cert: 15

Running time: 82mins

Year: 2017


 


What’s the story: In mid-80s Buenos Aires, on the anniversary of a fashion model’s fiery death during a photoshoot, magazine staff members begin disappearing…

What’s the verdict: Blood and Black Lace directed by Pedro Almodovar best describes Ezequiel Endelman and Leandro Montejano’s love letter to the films of Mario Bava, Dario Argento, and other Italian masters of suspense.

The writer-director duo have a blast weaving the giallo style and plots into their own deliciously dark movie...

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Arrow Video Blu-Ray: The Cat o’ Nine Tails

Director: Dario Argento

Writer: Dario Argento (screenplay), Dardano Sacchetti, Luigi Colli, Dario Argento (story)

Cast: Karl Malden, James Franciscus, Catherine Spaak, Cinzia De Carolis, Tino Carraro

Cert: 15

Running time: 115mins

Year: 1971


FILM:
EXTRAS: medium_5


What’s the story: When blind crossword puzzle designer Arno (Malden) overhears a blackmail plot, it pulls him, adopted daughter Lori (De Carolis) and reporter Giordani (Franciscus) into a world of intrigue and mass murder. Do the head of a local scientific institute (Carraro) and his daughter Anna (Spaak) have anything to do with the mayhem?

What’s the verdict: Traditionally regarded as Argento’s disappointing sophomore effort after The Bird with the Crystal Plumage wowed audiences, time has been kind to The Cat o’ Nine Tails...

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2017’s London Film Festival Walks On The Wild Side

For movie lovers, October is London Film Festival time. Specifically, Wednesday 4th to Sunday 15th October this year.

Now in its 61st year, organisers have ditched including the number in the name, favouring the trendier sounding BFI London Film Festival 2017.

Whatever the moniker, the festival is guaranteed to deliver first rate films over 12 celluloid (and digital format) stuffed days.

While there are big hitters amongst the 242 films screening from a whopping 67 different countries, this year we’re most excited by the darker end of the festival.

Still present are the typical galas and strands. Andy Serkis’ directorial debut, Breathe, is the Opening Night Gala...

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The Neon Demon

The-Neon-Demon-posterDirector: Nicolas Wingding Refn

Writers: Nicolas Wingding Refn, Mary Laws, Polly Stenham

Cast: Elle Fanning, Jena Malone, Bella Heathcote, Abbey Lee, Keanu Reeves, Christina Hendricks

Cert: 18

Running time: 118mins

Year: 2016



What’s the story: Jesse (Fanning), a young small town girl hits the bright lights of LA seeking her fortune as a runway model. Supported by make-up artist Ruby (Malone), Jesse becomes the target of jealous fellow models Gigi and Sarah (Heathcote and Lee) and menaced by an intimidating motel manager (Reeves).

The-Neon-Demon---Elle-Fanning,-bloody-throatThe-Neon-Demon---Elle-Fanning,-Jena-Malone

What’s the verdict: Intoxicating, dazzling, erotic and mysterious. OR: head-scratching, ponderous guff. Yep, director Nicolas Winding Refn’s second film to be booed at Cannes is as marmitey as could be expected.

After skewering machismo in both the Oscar...

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Blu-Ray Review: Blood and Black Lace

Blood-and-Blace-Lace---Arrow-Blu-ray-coverDirector: Mario Bava

Writer: Marcello Fondato, Guiseppe Barilla, Mario Bava

Cast: Cameron Mitchell, Eva Bartok, Thomas Reiner, Mary Dawne Arden

Cert: 18

Running time: 89mins

Year: 1964

Blu-ray region: A+B

medium_5      

The lowdown: Mario Bava’s magnificent giallo receives the home video treatment it deserves with Arrow Film’s stunning Blu-ray. A killer is stalking and slashing models in an haute couture fashion house, which doubles as a hotbed of blackmail, drug addiction, infidelity and betrayal. Hugely influential, the film redefined big screen murder-mysteries, paved the way for the slasher movie and, 51 years later, remains a key example of how to shoot a thriller in bold, near hallucinogenic colour...

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