The DLB recently spoke to director Quentin Tarantino for MSN Canada about his new movie DJANGO UNCHAINED. Perhaps surprisingly, the film — a Western — is featured on the cover of the latest issue of Fangoria. I reached out to Fango editor Chris Alexander to explain their choice:
Archive for the History Category
Starring Egbert Jan Weeber, Bert Luppes and Huub Stapel
Written and directed by Dick Maas
The recent angry Facebook status updates I have noticed from those looking to reclaim their right to wish people “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays” speaks to just how protective some people get about Christmas… sorry, the holiday season. Similarly, the Dutch take their equivalent, Sinterklaas, very seriously, to the point where poet and artist Quinsy Gario was pepper sprayed and arrested in Dordrecht, Holland, last month for wearing a homemade T-shirt that read “Zwarte Piet is Racism.” (Zwarte Piet — or Black Pete — is Sinterklaas’s Sambo-like servant.)
WAR OF THE DEAD
Starring Andrew Tiernan, Samuel Vauramo and Mikko Leppilampi
Written by Barr B. Potter and Marko Markilaasko
Directed by Marko Markilaasko
Good things do not always come to those who wait. Finnish filmmaker Marko Markilaasko, for instance, filmed the WWII Nazi zombie movie War of the Dead back in 2007, but it only had its world premiere this past Saturday night at the Toronto After Dark Film Festival. Likewise, Toronto audience members who had been excitedly tracking the film since that time were greeted by a middling action movie with little horror content whose atrocious script left little meat for its cast to chew upon.
The DLB had the good fortune to preview the upcoming season premiere of the long-running BBC sci-fi show Dr. Who Wednesday night, and it’s crackerjack stuff. As part of just three audiences worldwide to preview the episode (entitled “The Impossible Astronaut), we were hosted by “InnerSPACE” hosts AJ Fry and Teddy Wilson and dedicated the evening to much-loved Dr. Who actress Elisabeth Sladen, who played companion Sarah Jane Smith and died this past week from cancer. In addition, we learned that Episode 4 will be the much-discussed Neil Gaiman-penned episode.
EYES OF THE MOTHMAN
Written and directed by Matthew J. Pellowski
Red Line Studios
One of the strangest stories in the realm of the paranormal is that of the Mothman. For the uninitiated, the Mothman was a winged, man-shaped creature which was reported multiple times in and around Point Pleasant, West Virginia, through late 1966 and early 1967. Other strange happenings surrounded the Mothman happening, including sightings of UFOs, men in black and aliens… mostly by reliable, God-fearing locals. Was the Mothman an alien? A mutated crane? Or did everyone simply lie? And was that even possible?
The film, by co-directors Joshua Zeman and Barbara Brancaccio, traces the urban legend of Cropsey, supposedly an escaped mental patient responsible for the deaths of several mentally challenged children in Staten Island, New York. Zeman and Brancaccio focus on the arrest and prosecution of Andre Rand, a creepy drifter who was said to have killed Jennifer Schweiger, a child with Down’s Syndrome, in 1987. Other deaths lead officials to try to pin them on Rand, but did he do it?
Rue Morgue will be conducting an interview with Zeman via Skype after the film.
For more information, on the film visit the Cropsey Website.
Today is 73rd birthday of Barbara Steele, star of such horror classics as Black Sunday, The Pit & the Pendulum, the original Piranha and Nightmare Castle. Those of you unfamiliar with Ms. Steele, start with Black Sunday (1960), her only collaboration with Italian director Mario Bava. Her dark beauty and irresistible sensuality have made her a favourite of horror fans for decades and inspired many acts of devotion, including this one by yours truly:
That, my lovelies, is the gruesome cover art for Zombies! An Illustrated History of the Undead by ex-Rue Morgue editor-in-chief and friend Jovanka Vuckovic. It’s available for pre-order now on Amazon.com and is due out Feb 1 from St. Martin’s Press in the US and Ilex Press in the UK. The cover comes courtesy of The Walking Dead artists Charlie Adlard and Cliff Rathburn.
We’ll be sure to keep tabs on this project, as well as Jovanka’s upcoming directorial debut, The Captured Bird. Follow that project’s development on http://www.thecapturedbird.com/.
The DLB spent part of the afternoon catching up with his favourite fiends at the Rue Morgue House of Horror, hatching schemes, talking shit and rubbing our hands in anticipation of Black 100, the party to end all parties celebrating the mag’s newly-released 100th issue.
We also sat down with RM editor-in-chief Dave Alexander to discuss Issue 100, landing their interview with Sir Christopher Lee, and the ongoing legacy of Rue Morgue Magazine.
One of the greatest experiences a fan of genre cinema can have is traveling to Montreal for the FanTasia film festival. Each year Mitch David and his crew program dozens of amazing films from all around the world in the realms of sci-fi, cult weirdness, action, Asian and, of course, horror. This year’s schedule is still weeks away, but the FanTasia press office just announced a few special events and screenings.
From the press release:
THE COMPLETE METROPOLIS – A GALA EVENT AT PLACE DES ARTS
Seldom has the rediscovery of a cache of lost footage ignited widespread curiosity as did the announcement, in July 2008, that an essentially complete copy of Fritz Lang’s METROPOLIS had been found. This prompted an incredible year-long restoration project, the results of which will be unveiled for the first time in Quebec this summer, at Fantasia. Featuring over 25 minutes of new material (1,257 shots, including entire new sequences), the complete METROPOLIS will be screened as a special gala event at the 3000-seat Wilfred Pelletier theatre in Place des Arts on July 28. For this special night, internationally renowned silent film composer Gabriel Thibaudeau is writing a new score for the feature, which he will perform with a 13-piece orchestra live at the screening. It will be a fantastically historical night in every sense of the word!
Notes on the music for Fantasia’s METROPOLIS event by Gabriel Thibaudeau:
“For the last 22 years I have been resident pianist and composer for the Cinematheque québécoise. METROPOLIS is one of the first films I played to. Writing a new score for this film represents, for me, a long cherished dream. The film’s modern feel and visual treatment lends itself well to experimentation and is a pure joy to create sound for!
How to express musically the class struggle and dialectic that are the foundations of this work? By utilizing not one, but two chamber orchestras! Quite simply, at stage left the orchestra represents the elitist spirit of the city through a string quintet and keyboard. At stage right a brass quintet with organ will form the second orchestra, symbol of the strength of the workers in the subterranean city. The percussion section in the center will form a link between the two worlds/ensembles.
For this two and a half hour performance, specially commissioned by the Fantasia Festival, the majority of movements will be precisely written and perfectly synchronized with the images on screen. However, certain passages will be more free, created live through “Soundpainting”, a technique of improvising from coded gestures used by the conductor.”
– Gabriel Thibaudeau
Here is the trailer for The Complete Metropolis:
A LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR KEN RUSSELL
Fantasia will present Britain’s celebrated enfant terrible, the director of such one-of-a-kind classics as ALTERED STATES, TOMMY, CRIMES OF PASSION, WOMEN IN LOVE, LISZTOMANIA, GOTHIC, SALOME’S LAST DANCE, MAHLER and LAIR OF THE WHITE WORM, with a lifetime achievement award in celebration of his astoundingly unique and bravely provocative visions. On the night of his ceremony, we will screen a rare 35mm print of his explosive and still-controversial 1971 masterpiece THE DEVILS. This notoriously powerful film, which remains unavailable on DVD anywhere in the world, stars Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave, and featuring art direction by Derek Jarman. Russell will be in town for a week and our special “Devils’ Night” award presentation will kick off a massive retrospective of his filmography split across Cinematheque Quebecoise and Cinema Du Parc.
THE INTERNATIONAL PREMIERE OF STUART GORDON & JEFFREY COMBS’ CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED EDGAR ALLAN POE STAGE PLAY
Award-winning filmmaker Stuart Gordon, beloved for such films as RE-ANIMATOR, FROM BEYOND and STUCK will be returning to Fantasia (after gracing us with the Canadian premiere of EDMOND in 2006) with his staple star Jeffrey Combs to stage their acclaimed one-man play NEVERMORE: AN EVENING WITH EDGAR ALLAN POE, which features Combs in a breathtaking performance as the legendary author. It should be noted that Gordon was a celebrated theatre director for many years before turning to cinema. Among his many impressive credits, the future filmmaker founded Chicago’s Organic Theater in the ’70s and was the first to stage a play by David Mamet, who he continues to collaborate with every now and then. A spellbinding recreation of the public recitals that Poe regularly performed in the years before his death, based on reviews and reports of his actual appearances, NEVERMORE premiered in Los Angeles in July 2009 and was originally slated to run for four weeks. Critical raves and mass audience draws saw the run extended to nearly six months. Combs’ performance is so captivating and mercurial that many critics have championed him as “the definitive Poe,” a claim that we can fully agree with! 2010 also happens to be the 25th anniversary of RE-ANIMATOR, and in celebration of this, Fantasia will be screening an uncut 35mm print of the cult classic, hosted by Gordon and Combs.
For updates on all things FanTasia, go to www.fantasiafestival.com