Assassin(s)

Assassin(s) (1997)

Assassin(s) first published by Film4 Summary: Mathieu Kassovitz follows up La Haine with a modern history of violence, in this contemporary parable of an ageing hitman and his young apprentice(s). Review: In 1995, with only a few short films and the little known feature Métisse (1993) to his name, actor/director Mathieu Kassovitz suddenly arrived, taking viewers…

Failure!

Failure! (2023)

Failure! had its world première on Mon 28th Aug at FrightFest Writer/director Alex Kahuam’s Failure! begins with a text quotation from Mobeen Hakeem: “Protect the people you claim to love. Protect them from a dark end, even if that means protecting them from yourself.” This cuts right to the heart of the dilemma facing its…

Woe

Woe (2020)

Writer/director Matthew Goodhue’s feature debut Woe begins with a series of unsettling sights and sounds. As a young bearded man (Adam Halferty) comes out of  house’s backdoor carrying something in a large garbage bag which he embraces tenderly before putting it down, picking up a shovel and digging into the ground, we can hear the…

Waking Karma

Waking Karma (2023)

Waking Karma opens with two text quotes that set out its stall. The first is from Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex, a tragedy of incest and parenticide, and of fate that cannot be avoided no matter how hard it is resisted. The second cites the instructions given by Charles Manson to his cultish hippie ‘family’ as they…

Megalomaniac

Megalomaniac (2022)

Megalomaniac has its UK première at Grimmfest  Writer/director Karim Ouelhaj’s Megalomaniac has two formal openings, introducing two separate if related themes that will come to dominate the rest of the film. The first is a brief history, presented in text, of the so-called Butcher of Mons, a notorious Belgian serial killer who, between 22 March and 18 October in 1997,…

Falling

Falling (2020)

Falling first published by Movies on Weekends Falling begins with young Willis Peterson (Sverrir Gudnason) bringing his wife Gwen (Hannah Gross) and newborn John home to his farm near the small town of Boonville in upstate New York. In a private moment, as he looks down at Gwen asleep in the car and John gurgling…

Carmen Farias

The Exorcism of Carmen Farias (2021)

The Exorcism of Carmen Farias (El Exorcismo de Carmen Farías) has its international première at FrightFest 2021 When Rocio (Patricia Martínez) dies at the beginning of The Exorcism of Carmen Farias (El Exorcismo de Carmen Farías), in her will she leaves to her adult daughter Carmen (Camila Sodi) the rural home of her own mother…

Z

Z (2019)

Z first published by VODzilla.co You wait for one ‘imaginary friend’ narrative with an intense mother/son relationship at its heart, and two come along. In Adam Egypt Mortimer’s Daniel Isn’t Real (2019), a young student must contend with the possibility that he has inherited his mother’s mental illness, even as Daniel, the destructive imaginary friend…

Daddy

Come To Daddy (2019)

Come To Daddy first published by VODzilla.co The word ‘UFO’ appears twice in Come To Daddy. When, in response to an unexpected letter, 35-year-old Norval Greenwood (Elijah Wood, Maniac, 2012) comes visiting the father who walked out on him when he was five, and claps eyes on the remote cliffside home – all rough timbers…

Changeling

The Changeling (1980)

The Changeling first published by VODzilla.co The Changeling is a ghost story, and with its cast of middle-aged characters, a rather classical one at that – but as its very title implies, it is also concerned with substitutions. For a start there is its director, Peter Medak (The Ruling Class; A Day in the Death…