Vampiress

The Barcelona Vampiress (La vampira de Barcelona) (2020)

“Based on real facts,” states text that opens Lluís Danés’ The Barcelona Vampiress (La vampira de Barcelona). This is an entirely conventional, and questionable, assertion of veridicality, which viewers have long been inured to taking with a pinch of salt – and the overstated tautology of the phrase ‘real facts’ (‘fets reals’) comes across overtly…

Abgeschnitten

Cut Off (Abgeschnitten) (2018)

Adapted from Sebastian Fitzek and Michael Tsokos’ best selling novel Abgeschnitten (2012), Cut Off (Abgeschnitten) takes its writer/director Christian Alvart back to the serial killer psychothriller terrains of his earlier feature Antibodies (Antikörper, 2005).  The film’s opening premise is as high-concept as they come: Paul Herzfeld (Moritz Bleibtreu), a divorced professor of forensic pathology working…

Hounds

Hounds of Love (2017)

Hounds of Love first published by SciFiNow 1985 saw the release of Kate Bush’s album Hounds of Love, whose B-side comprised a conceptual song cycle (known collectively as The Ninth Wave) about the struggles of a woman fallen overboard. Though set two years later in a working-class suburb of Western Australia’s Perth, Ben Young’s homonymous feature…

The Treatment (De Behandeling) (2015)

First published by Sight & Sound, June 2015 Synopsis: Antwerp, Belgium. A figure known to local children as the troll has imprisoned the Simons in their own home for days and, when interrupted, stolen off into a woodland park with their young son Robin. Robin’s corpse is found up a tree, bearing semen from his…

Polisse

Polisse (2011)

Polisse first published by Film4 Synopsis: Following Pardonnez-moi and The Actress’ Ball, Maïwenn’s third feature walks the line between docudrama and melodrama, but is grounded by horror all too human. Review: “I was scared nobody’d take me seriously,” says Melissa, explaining to police officer Fred (rapper Joeystarr) why she has adopted a ‘granny look’ – fake glasses,…

Clown (2014)

Review first published by Grolsch FilmWorks In October of 2010, a trailer appeared on YouTube for a horror film named Clown – expressly, as the title card at the end showed, “An Eli Roth Production”, directed by Roth himself. All this was in fact a cunningly plausible fake, engineered by TV director Jon Watts and his fellow writer/co-conspirator Christopher…