18 October 2014

Watch The Engrossing Similo Sci-fi Short

When it comes to calling films stunning, riveting, engrossing there is very few films that merit that stature, Miguel de Olaso and Bruno Zacarías short film Similo is one we would call engrossing.

Similo is an 23 minute sci-fi film set in the future where humans live in Antarctic cities all thanks to the global climate changes. Hebe and Ciro are back together again however one is looking for love another their identity.

Similo is essentially an love story set in the back drop of climate changes with the concentration of wealth, consumerism ironically in cities created by big coroperations. Similo has a big sense of realism to it which makes a wonderful 23 minutes you would gladly give up.


18 October 2014

Film Review - Art of Darkness (2014) - Raindance Film Festival

18 October 2014

The Truth Will Be Revealed In Daniel Simpson's Hangar 10 Official Trailer

From the producer of Creep, Severance and Triangle, Hangar 10 aka The Rendlesham UFO Incident is a British sci-fi horror thriller and today we get our first look at the film's official trailer which suggests Horror will come from the sky!

Hangar 10 does believe it or not has a true story behind it based around the Rendlesham Forest UFO incident in which 3 metal detector enthusiasts go search for Saxon Gold.Whilst filming their findings what they capture on camera is an invading Alien armada of ships leading the threesome to a night of terror as the newly arrived 'visitors' stalk them.

Ok Hangar 10 is an found footage and it's been done a million times however we give our thumbs up to the production team attempting to spice things up trying something a little different. Plenty of scares, shady government officials and creatures vying for your blood and if they take some of the scares from the likes of creep got an exciting brainless fun flick on her hands.

Bloody Disgusting have unleashed this trailer on the masses as Hangar 10 is been released 7th November in USA by IFC Midnight VOD/limited cinema release, however UK release is early 2015 are we looking at a potential 2015 Film 4 Frightfest Glasgow film?

33 years after the infamous Rendlesham Forest UFO incident, three metal detector enthusiasts hunting for Saxon gold in the same region capture incredible footage of UFOs whilst filming their expedition. As night falls – and with their navigation equipment failing – the trio finds themselves facing a terrifying encounter with an unforgiving alien presence

17 October 2014

LFF 2014 - London Film Festival Cinehouse Highlights

Away from the red carpets, A-List actors and star directors there was still plenty going on at the 58th London Film Festival to attract the most discerning of cinema fan. While the glitzy premieres massed together much of the media attention, huddling under umbrellas to catch a glimpse, a photo and a few words from talent including the likes of Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Adam Sandler and Jennifer Lawrence there were hundreds of other films showing in 15 venues spread out across the nation’s capital.

The LFF’s timely positioning towards the end of the year often allows it to soak up some of the big hitters from earlier festivals such as Cannes, Venice or Toronto. This year these included Mr. Turner, Whiplash, Foxcatcher and Hungry Hearts among others. Outside of these though and away from the guaranteed hits, what were the films that, if viewers were brave enough to gamble on, really paid off?

Here are just 5 of films that may not have garnered many headlines but certainly proved a hit at the festival.

It isn’t everyday that a black and white Iranian vampire film comes along so it’s safe to say that this is, without question, the best one around. Ana Lily Amirpour’s debut feature is an incredibly stylish and wonderfully photographed film that calls to mind early Jim Jarmusch films while simultaneously being completely unique. Its blend of genres, considered soundtrack and impressive cinematography ensured this was a film completely of its own, and completely fascinating.

By the time it was shown at LFF, there was unfortunate news that this lo-fi gem of a Spanish film had not been chosen to represent the country as their entry into the Academy Awards. While you can see why voters opted against the play-like structure and modern conceit you cannot help but feel they missed a trick. Simply told it is a story of a couple trying to maintain their relationship over the enforced 10,000km distance of the title but its success is the tenderness, believability of the performances and the use of modern technology that ensures we are behind them 100% throughout.

It may be a slight cheat including Mommy on this list as its prodigiously young director, Xavier Dolan, already has four acclaimed films under his belt but his latest topped them all. It’s expertly told tale of a violently troubled teen and his testing relationship with his widowed Mum could, and deservedly should, be the one to push the 25 year-old further into the limelight.

Before Daft Punk became everyone’s favourite disco-revelling, Nile Rogers-featuring, family friendly band, they were electronic pioneers of Parisian house music. Mia Hansen-Love’s Eden traces the fictional account of aspiring DJ Paul from the burgeoning French dance scene of the 90’s to the global phenomenon it became, uncovering the robotic duo amongst others. This thumping musical love letter takes in clubs, drugs and relationship woes along the way to dizzying effect.

Shot in black-and-white with stylistic overtones and plenty of fourth wall breaking, this Mexican film certainly has an air of French New Wave about it. The backdrop of student protest only furthers its Gallic likeness but Alonso Ruizpalacios’ feature is much more than an imitated knock-off looking for credit by association. When teenage Tomas gets sent to the City to live with his student brother and roommate the three inadvertedly end up on the road in search of a forgotten rock legend and take in the sights and bright lights along the way.

Matthew Walsh

17 October 2014

Film Review - Palo Alto (2013)

16 October 2014

Film Review - Annabelle (2014)

Warner Bros
Rating: 15
Release Date: 10th October 2014
John R. Leonetti
Annabelle Wallis, Alfre Woodard, Ward Horton, Tony Amendola, Eric Ladin, Brian Howe

I love horror movies, and have over the years probably watched more than is healthy for me. With this in mind I feel I know as well as any what elements to look for in a good one - elements which are often missing from modern excursions into the macabre. Current filmmakers appear to believe for a film to be scary you simply have to throw in plenty of gore and CGI frights. What they forget is that human imagination is as effective as anything Hollywood's technical wizards can create. Before modern SFX, directors of the 1930s like James Whale and those from the 1950s and 60s such as Hammer stalwart Terrence Fisher, created cinematic chills through the art of suggestion which are still disturbing viewers today as much as eighty years later.

Amongst the torture porn and found footage trash that saturates the modern market, the occasional film which captures the atmosphere of those glory days still appears. Films which play on the emotions and natural fears, that are common to everyone and which we can all relate to - such as being alone or of the devil. Director John R. Leonetti's Annabelle (2014) is one such film.

Mia (Annabelle Wallis) and her husband John (Ward Horton) live the idyllic Californian life with their baby daughter on the outskirts of Los Angeles. However after their neighbours are gruesomely murdered by the members of a satanic cult, and they themselves are beset by a series of strange events culminating in a fire which devastates their house, they relocate to an apartment block on the other side of town. But the bizarre occurrences only intensify in their new home, seemingly related in some way to a vintage doll which John recently bought for Mia - a connection which the young couple are about to discover to their cost.

Annabelle may not win plaudits for excellence. However it is undeniably fun, with many aspects spot on in their ability to focus on the classic horror elements: 'possessed' dolls, the devil, concerned priests and the symbolic power of the Catholic church, women and children in peril and the old staple of ineffectual husband who's never there when he's needed. All these come into play in writer Gary Dauberman's clever script, which racks up the tension with some suitably creepy set pieces, until the marvellously taut finale which literally takes the central characters to the edge, and then .......

Only a talented writer or director can reference past landmarks, without their homage being ridiculed as little more than a weak reflection of past glories. Annabelle is the perfect example of Dauberman and Leonetti's skill in this, capturing the essence of classics like Rosemary's Baby (1968), The Exorcist (1973) and The Omen (1976) - as well as the devil dolls from Ealing's Dead of Night (1945) and Child's Play (1988) - yet giving the elements an imaginative twist. Though the age old battle between good and evil has been seen many times before, this duo reimagine it with such style that it all seems terrifyingly fresh and realistic.

In the end of course, those behind the camera are only as good as those in front. With this in mind the cast do not disappoint. Though all who appear turn in believable - and in the case of Tony Amendola as a sympathetic priest Father Perez, unnerving - performances, it is Wallis as Mia, the distraught mother at the story's centre, who steals the show. Her mounting desperation, culminating in sheer terror as she finds herself battling for the soul of her daughter against powers from beyond, is one of the best displays of sustained fear seen recently on the big screen.

The most memorable experiences in life are those which mine our deepest, most primal emotions. Annabelle does just that, to disturbing effect.

Cleaver Patterson

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