Slapface

Slapface (2021)

Slapface has its international Première at FrightFest 2021 “You know why we have to do this?” says young adult Tom (Mike Manning) to his much younger, scared-looking brother Lucas (August Maturo) at the very beginning of Slapface. “Are you ready?” And then, the title of writer/director Jeremiah Kipp’s feature (adapted from his 2018 short of…

New Kids

The New Kids (aka Striking Back) (1985)

The New Kids first published by Little White Lies, as entry 106 in my Cinema Psychotronicum column “You’re gonna make it, kids. You’ve gotta be strong.” This is Colonel ‘Mac’ MacWilliams (Tom Atkins) in the opening sequence of The New Kids, giving his teenaged children Loren (Shannon Presby) and Abby (Lori Loughlin) a pep talk…

Lake of Death

Lake of Death (De dødes tjern) (2019)

“Do you think there’s an alternate person in people’s reflections?” In Lake of Death (De dødes tjern), written and directed by Nini Bull Robsahm (Amnesia, 2014), this is the opening line, delivered by Bjørn (Patrick Walshe McBride) to his twin sister Lillian (Iben Akerlie), as the camera tilts up from their inverted images reflected in…

Little Zombies

We Are Little Zombies (Wî â Ritoru Zonbîzu) (2019)

Its title may suggest a kiddy monster movie, but writer/director Makoto Nagahisa’s feature debut We Are Little Zombies (Wî â Ritoru Zonbîzu) offers a rather different kind of child-oriented horror, where the ADHD ebullience and wild desultoriness of youthful energy serve, at least in part, to disguise a much deeper existential, explicitly Kafka-esque dread.  We…

Tigers

Tigers Are Not Afraid (Vuelven) (2017)

Tigers Are Not Afraid first published by ScirFiNow “There’s no wishes. Don’t be stupid.” “I wish that your scar disappears.” This exchange between hardheaded, traumatised Shine (Juan Ramós López) and idealistic, quixotic Estrella (Paola Lara) captures a dialectic that is ongoing in Issa López’s Tigers Are Not Afraid (aka Vuelven, literally ‘return’), a film that constantly…