As I write this I’m sitting in the home of a good friend who has been kind enough to let me sleep on his couch in Montreal. He’s a few years younger than I am and I imagine he is still accustomed to the life of a young bachelor. He has a couple of roommates and it certainly looks like the guys are getting their money’s worth out of their apartment. But I’m grateful, the living conditions don’t…sorry I had to shake a splinter cell of ants off of my arm. I was saying that the living conditions don’t bother me. Having spent the previous six months in Europe I have discovered a new realm of brokeness. I spent nearly the last of my funds on a duty-free box of Earl Grey Tea at Heathrow airport. The Earl on my empty paper tea package (at least I assume he’s an Earl) is looking up at me with a mixture of admiration and disdain. If he could talk I’m sure he would say ‘Jolly good show…wanker’. But how can he hold these contrasting opinions of me? I’ll tell you why: because despite my severely limited funds I am about to cover Fantasia Film Festival for the very first time. For those of you not familiar with this name, it means that I will be watching 3 – 4 movies a day for the next three weeks. Horror movies, action movies, martial arts, sci-fi, anime, thrillers…the possibilities seem endless! Who needs luxuries? With over 160 films screening from July 19th – August 9th, I have everything I need. Maybe I’ll bring the Earl and the ants along to one of the shows.
Here are some great reasons to check out the fest (descriptions and tickets at the links):
Horror is a staple for any genre-based film festival and Fantasia is no different. It seems like previous years have had more horror films screening at Fantasia, but this year still has more than enough to satisfy any horror afficiando looking for scares, gore, atmosphere, or just a horror/comedy to have a good laugh.
At any festival some of my favourite screenings always turn out to be animated movies aimed at adults. So as you can imagine I will be losing sleep over this year’s offerings as some seriously dark and mature titles round out Fantasia’s animated line-up.
It would be a tall task to put together a longer list of new Asian films than Fantasia has done in 2012. It seems like the festival has always had a great relationship with many Japanese filmmakers, and don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of intriguing Japanese films in the line-up, but also films from the Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, continental China, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines and India. Fantasia does not take the ‘International Film Festival’ label lightly!
The Wild, Wacky, and Weird
Looking through the program I’ve read about multiple movies that I cannot even begin to imagine on-screen. Zombie pieces of nigiri? Really? An ultra-violent musical? An action-packed courtroom battle? A feature length film seemingly centred around a zombie ass? They may sound like jokes, but many of these completely bonkers concept will probably be some of the best movies at the fest.
Finally, reviews like myself enjoy nothing more than attending world premieres. Being in the audience for the first public screening of a film can be a very special experience. The anticipation, the energy in the crowd, and the responsibility that comes with being one of the first to write a review for a film. Fantasia has no shortage of World Premieres this year.
See you at the festival!
At Entertainment Maven we are also very happy to announce that the short film Familiar, previously covered by Kirk at Little Terrors will also be screening Fantasia. Congrats guys!