Annabelle Comes Home (2019)

Annabelle Comes Home first published by Little White Lies When Annabelle first showed up in the opening scene of James Wan’s 1971-set The Conjuring (2013), it was a way of introducing us to the casework of Ed and Lorraine Warren, the real-life husband-and-wife team of demonologists – or, if you prefer, media-embracing charlatans – here…


Birthday (Saeng-il) (2019)

Text of my onstage introduction to Birthday (Saeng-il), which screened at the London Korean Film Festival 2019 On the morning of 16 April, 2014, an 18-year-old, overladen ferry named the MV Sewol was travelling from Incheon to Jeju, when it listed heavily while making a course adjustment and started rapidly taking on water as it…


The Odd Family: Zombie On Sale (2019)

Text of an onstage introduction to The Odd Family: Zombie On Sale which I gave at the London Korean Film Festival 2019 These days, zombies are everywhere, and films about them have, like the creatures themselves, proliferated virally, overwhelming through their sheer numbers.  It wasn’t always like this. In the Thirties, Forties and Fifties, their…


Idol (Woosang) (2019)

This is (more or less) the text from my onstage introduction to a screening of Idol (Woosang) at the London Korean Film Festival 2019 When it comes to spoilers, there’s an unwritten code that anything which happens in a film’s first third is fair game for advance disclosure and discussion – but that anything which…


A Good Woman Is Hard To Find (2019)

A Good Woman Is Hard To Find cements director Abner Pastoll’s already secure reputation as a sure hand with character-driven genre cinema, following his Franco-English psychochiller Road Games (Fausse Route, 2014) and twisty chase short Getaway Driver (2017). This time around, working from a screenplay by Ronan Blaney, Pastoll merges the social realism of Ken…


Dead Dicks (2019)

It’s not every film that is prefaced with text showing a legitimate toll-free number to call (in Canada) “if you or someone you know might be at risk of self-harm or self-injury” – but then, Dead Dicks opens with a graphic depiction of suicide, as Richie (Heston Horwin, Rock Steady Row), alone among the fractured…


Sexy Killer (Sexykiller, morirás por ella) (2008)

Sexy Killer (Sexykiller, morirás por ella) first published by In a university locker room, as female undergraduates in various states of undress gossip maliciously about one another’s sex lives, a figure in mask and black robes watches and waits for his opportunity. With machete in hand, he finds each shower cubicle frustratingly empty, until…


Piercing (2018)

Piercing first published by Piercing opens, and indeed closes, with an external shot of buildings, as the camera zooms and cranes past the windows of different apartments, each containing its own cellular family, and stories within storeys. Of course the film – Nicholas Pesce’s second feature, following his monochrome serial killer debut The Eyes…


Sweet, Sweet Lonely Girl (2016)

Sweet, Sweet Lonely Girl first published by “That street with all the Victorians?” asks Beth (Quinn Shephard) upon hearing where her new friend Adele (Erin Wilhelmi) is staying in town. “Strange cats, those Victorians. You know what they used to do for fun? Dress up in weird costumes and pose for each other.Tableaux vivants….