There are few things certain in life. Death, depression and Ian Rattray, Alan Jones, Greg Day and Paul McEvoy will pull out all the stops for another season of horror and thrills this August.
Post pandemic, we now seem full swing back to normality and as such the limitations of a covid workplace and invention of cinema taken away, the floor is open to what the genre can bring to the table in London for thousands of adorning horror fans and we've compiled a list of what we think will be this years must-sees.
As always, with a festival as large as FrightFest, there will be clashes, there will be duds, but most importantly there will be fun and part of the charm of FrightFest is taking the risk and gambling whether the next film on the itinerary is your new favourite horror film, and there are many over the years that remain in my top 50.
THE LAIR sees the return of FrightFest veteran Neil Marshall bringing to screens his world premiere calling it “The Dirty Half Dozen meets THE THING”. If there's one thing we know about Marshall, whether it's THE DECENT, DOG SOLDIERS or GAME OF THRONES, is that there will be blood.
On her final combat mission in Afghanistan, RAF pilot Kate Sinclair is shot down over a main rebel stronghold. Chased by insurgents she finds refuge in an abandoned bunker, where Russians once experimented crossing human organs with alien DNA to create a deadly biological weapon. Set free from their giant test tubes, the ‘ravagers’ invade a local US army outpost where the squad must fight the mutant monsters to the bitter end.
Art the clown makes his triumphant return to screens and he's sure to bring more blood and chaos along with him. In a world of Pennywise, the Killer Clowns and even Poltergeist, Art makes them other clowns look like Care Bears who continue his chaotic tales in the unchained, unrestricted, unhinged, merciless and completely no-holds-barred follow-up to the 2018 FrightFest attraction TERRIFIER.
After being resurrected by a sinister entity, demented Art the Clown returns to the timid town of Miles County where he targets a bereaved family, especially teenage Sienna and her younger brother Jonathan. And it’s Halloween night too so pray you don’t get in deranged Art’s way!
If the last few years has tought us anything is that there's a penchant for 70s horror. Whether it's the return of TCM, Ti West's X or any of the Firefly family Trilogy, there's something about the era that screams to horror fans to this day. CANDY LAND is no different.
A seemingly naïve and devout young woman finds herself cast out from her sinister religious cult. With no place to turn Remy immerses herself into the underground world of truck stop sex workers courtesy of her four new gay and bisexual friends. Under the watchful eye of their madam Nora, and enigmatic local lawman Sheriff Rex, Remy navigates between her strained belief system and the Lot Lizard code to find her true chilling calling in life. 1970s exploitation screams back into fashion in John Swab’s TRUCK STOP WOMEN meets COMMUNION shocker.
Continuing with more sex work life, MIDNIGHT PEEPSHOW is a UK based debut from veteran Jake West and pals Airell Anthony Hayles, Andy Edwards, Ludovica Musumeci for an anthology of terror.
At a Soho Peep Show, the sights on offer are tailor made to its customers’ deepest sinful fears. Tonight it welcomes a businessman who has a unique connection to an extreme fantasy website. He becomes witness to three stories of victims that found the website. But now the Midnight Peepshow has found him, it’s only a matter of time before he’s made to pay the ultimate price for dabbling in the dark side of desire. This is a twisted portmanteau horror threesome exploring the nightmare side of psychosexual fantasy.
To close a trilogy of erotica, NEW RELIGION is a Japanese offering from Keishi Kondo.
After her daughter's death, divorced Miyabi works as a call girl. One day, she meets a weird customer who wants to take a picture of her spine. Then, at another assignation, her feet. She soon realises that every time she allows her body to be photographed, her daughter’s spirit gets closer. Soon only her eyes remain to be captured, leading to the collapse of society in this bold, visionary and unique fantasy from a new and culture-shocking Japanese voice.
SOMETHING IN THE DIRT
Fresh off delivering the most frightful scenes of Marvel TV in MOON KNIGHT comes another mindfuck of mystery from Benson and Moorhead.
A fusion of DIY science fiction, extreme character drama, dark comedy, pre-apocalyptic vibes and overwhelming paranoia, the visionary pair star as neighbours John and Levi, who witness supernatural events in their Los Angeles apartment building. Realising documenting the paranormal could inject some fame and fortune into their wasted lives, they open up an ever deeper, pitch-black rabbit hole…
And in speaking of returns, Dario Argento is back!
In Rome, a serial killer has garrotted three high-class sex worker girls with cello strings, and up-market escort Diana is next on the list. Pursuing her one night in a white van, the maniac causes her car to crash, leaving her blind, and a young Chinese boy, Chin, in the other vehicle, an orphan. Together they must face the incandescent wrath of the snubbed murderer who continues to relentlessly stalk them. Dario Argento returns to the extreme thriller he pioneered in the 1970s with THE BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE and DEEP RED.
INCREDIBLE BUT TRUE
This may sound like the title of Quintin Dupieux' (RUBBER, WRONG COPS) career but it is in fact the title of his new film, a quirky comedy fantasy about middle-aged house hunters who find more in a suburban bargain buy than anyone could have dreamed. For what Alain and Marie discover in their new basement could well change their lives forever. An absurdist meditation on the cruelties of ageing? A droll Buñuelian satire on the world of bourgeois property ownership? Or a giddy time travel metaphysical wonder? This is another bizarre Dupieux masterpiece and another amazing addition to his wacky oeuvre.
Dominic Brunt arrives with another riveting foray into horror, this time expanding on the folklore of werewolves. Deemed as a splatter horror comedy about the shooting of a low-budget vampire movie, the crew get a little more than they bargained for when fiction and reality collide. With the full moon bright in the night sky, the nightmare begins and the body count rises as the cast and crew encounter the mansion's resident werewolf.
It’s the under-the-radar horror movie of the year. One that everybody will soon be talking about. Arriving in Detroit for a job interview, a young woman books a rental home. But when she arrives late at night, she discovers that the house is double booked and a strange man is already staying there. Against her better judgement, she decides to spend the evening, but soon discovers that there’s a lot more to fear than just an unexpected house guest. Plus Justin Long.
THE ONES YOU DIDN'T BURN
Despite all of the blood and action that a cinema trip can give you, sometimes a slow burn is needed to settle everyone down and Elise Finnerty's sibling drama looks set to get under the skin with revelation and trauma.
Nathan and Mirra are in no way close siblings. But their father’s passing means they must return to their old family farm to sell off the land. There, Nathan starts having vivid nightmares of a woman rising from the sea, feeling the same dread his father felt before his death. As Nathan spirals back into the addiction that caused the friction with his sister, Mirra is growing close to the very people the family exploited, giving way to a centuries-old secret regarding the land’s original owners.
EATING MISS CAMPBELL
Nobody carries the baton brightest of UK video nasties quite like Liam Regan who is set to raise eyebrows once more with EATING MISS CAMPBELL.
From the director of MY BLOODY BANJO, comes a dark-satirical-horror-comedy take on the teen-high school genre. Vegan-goth student Beth Conner, falls into a relationship with her new English teacher, Miss Campbell, and soon develops a problematic taste for human flesh. Unable to commit suicide without the help of a loaded handgun, Beth finds herself destined to live inside a 90s cliché-laden horror film. When a patriarchal school board auctions the rights to live stream the inaugural “All You Can Eat Massacre” contest (the prize a loaded handgun!) Beth finally finds a way to escape horror movies for good.
POWERTOOL CHEERLEADERS VS. THE BOYBAND OF THE SCREECHING DEAD