Sororal (2014) Review

sororal1GRIMMFEST 2014: SORORAL (Australia, 2014)

Dir- Sam Barrett

Starring- Amanda Woodhams, Austin Castiglione, Vito De Francesco

Australia already has a rich heritage of genre cinema, and it’s good to see them finally entering the Giallo territory, with SORORAL, and on the day of the screening of SUSPIRIA with Goblin playing the live soundtrack, this makes a nice build up before the main event. Yes the film does carry many significant Giallo traits, but at the same time some of it gets lost in style over content and does conclude on an uneven slightly implausible note, but as giallo is a genre built a lot on style and implausibility, there are still some parts of the film to appreciate.

Our main heroine is Cassie, an artist, who has some personal traumas that have affected her. She creates garish paintings that seem to depict murders. Yet Cassie sees these murders in visions that cause her to have a kind of seizure and experience the killings from the point of view of the attacker. Are these visions just dreams, somehow, or are they real. It’s only until the arrival of a slightly mysterious detective, Fabrizzi (De Francesco), who reveals that the murders are real and shows Cassie that there is a pattern to the killings as well as revealing photos of the victims, who Cassie instantly recognises.

It’s not long before she has to face her disturbing visual traumas and at the same time stop the killer from committing the murders and from hurting her close acquaintances and in particular her ex-lover who is marrying one of Cassie’s friends, all leading to a conclusion and twist that at times, certainly fits the Grimmfest fringe moniker of ‘Head Fuck’ films that SORORAL was playing as part of, as alongside Giallo child-like psychos, we get telekinetic power struggles and a loose plot involving genetic experimentation .

sororal2First of all the visuals in this film are beautifully done, they are bathed in colours of green and red adding a trippy psychedelic feel to the action, and certainly add a strong visual style. Barrett certainly knows how to handle the murder scenes well, staging them in a classic giallo set up, with the audience witnessing the killings from Cassie’s point of view.

The problem with the film is that it tends to float off in the style, and this becomes more of the centre piece of the film, which can work when it’s done well, but in SORORAL the style does tend to overtake the piece and start to slow down the pacing of the film, and myself certainly felt slight frustration with the pacing of certain scenes. This is not to say the film is terrible, I still liked parts of the style and look of the film, and it’s good to see that the setting is not explicitly made clear, but most likely the setting is 70’s Australia (possibly), partly from the fashion of some of the characters, and some certain scenes reek of the style of the decade.

This is further emphasised with the appearance of bottles of J & B, the Giallo films drink of choice, and a nice sly reference. On top of that the soundtrack certainly has a Goblin esque style and which I did enjoy, and if anything certainly emphasises or highlights how Goblin or Goblin esque style soundtracks fit well with Giallo horror. The film concludes though (without giving too much away) on a slightly absurd silly note, which seems to eclipse the madness and surreal elements revealed in the latter part of the picture, and also developments which occur that are then left unresolved, that seem to make the ending of the film come across as slightly rushed, as if they wanted to end it on a light note, but what we end up with is something that seems more on the side of the daft and slightly sentimental.

sororal3Admittedly for all its faults, SORORAL is not bad in parts and I preferred this Giallo throwback to the most recent TULPA (2012) which was a complete mess. As admittedly Barrett’s film does veer in the category of the absurd and seems to cram many plot twists and changes into one film that drags it down slightly, yet it does have some nice stylistic touches, a very good soundtrack and an obvious and affectionate appreciation for the style of Giallo.

5.5/ 10

Grimmfest Review – Saturday 4th October 2014

GRIMMFEST-2014-FB-HEADERGrimmfest Review – Saturday 4th October 2014

After Goblin the night before I was still buzzing and Saturday was always going to be a big day. With a short film showcase starting us off early and then 6 features after , it was going to be a long one. So starting 30 minutes late didn’t help but screening shorts can always be problematic at the best of times, and at least the Grimmfest guys were screening each short in the correct ratio .

I won’t go into too much details for the shorts but please try and check them out as many of today’s up and coming talents start in short films.

The Dancehouse, Oxford Road , Manchester

The Visitant 2014 USA 7 Minutes – Director Nick Peterson 7/10
Split 2014 UK 18 Minutes – Director Andy Stewart 9/10
Vomica 2014 UK 15 Minutes – Director Andy Green 7.5/10
Don’t Play With The Food 2014 Spain 9 Minutes – Director Daniel Munoz Caniero 6/10
The Stomach 2014 UK 15 Minutes – Ben Steiner 7.5/10
All I Know Is Nothing 2014 UK 3 Minutes – Director Matthew Barker 4/10
Autumn Harvest 2014 Norway 17 Minutes – Director Fredrik Hana 9/10

theforgotten-clemThe Forgotten (2014) UK 90 Mins Dir – Oliver Frampton. Starring – Shaun Dingwall, Clem Tibber, Elarica Gallacher, Lyndsay Marshal.

Teenager Tommy (Tibber ) is sent to live with his father (Dingwall) after his mother has a nervous breakdown. His father squats in an empty flat is a derelict London estate and makes ends meet by ripping scrap metal from the boarded up flats. After Tommy settles in he starts to hear noises coming from the flat next door, and after becoming friends with the fiesty Carmen the pair decide to investigate further.

A great British ghost story for 2014. Clem Tibber is wonderful as Tommy, a young loner with dysfunctional parents and a love of drawing. Dingwall is an father, who really only puts up with Tommy because he must and he has many problems of his own. And finally Elarica Gallacher really impresses as Carmen who appears hard on the outside but has a real soft centre.

With the pacing of an MR James story and reminiscent of Ken Loach’s The Haunting , The Forgotten puts a modern twist on the ghost story and uses it’s locations and amazing cast to superb use. I won’t mention much more as I don’t want to spoil anything, but just to say if you enjoy slow burning ghost stories then this will be for you. 7.5/10

On a final note I interviewed director Oliver Frampton and stars Clem Tibber and Elarica Gallacher. The interview hopefully will be up soon and will post a link here as soon as it does.

HouseboundHousebound (2014) NZ 109 Mins Dir – Gerard Johnstone. Starring – Morgana O’Reilly, Rima Te Wiata, Glen-Paul Waru, Cameron Rhodes, Millen Baird.

Now for a complete change of pace with Gerard Johnstone’s Housebound.
Kylie Bucknell is caught trying to steal money from a cash machine and is placed under house arrest. Unfortunately she is placed in the custody of her mother who Kylie can’t stand. Her mother is a constant blabbermouth and is also convinced that her house is haunted. Kylie dismisses her mother’s rants yet she herself starts to hear whispers and experience bumps in the night . Is it just her over-active imagination brought on by being stuck in a place she hates or could there be someone or something trying to communicate?

Housebound is an absolute triumph . It is funny, scary, gory, and I suppose being from New Zealand will draw comparisions to Peter Jackson’s early work. But there is so much more to it that mere comparisons . O’Reilly is top notch as the ballsy in-your-face Kylie, who really doesn’t give a fuck and her mother played by Rima Te Wiata is just the polar opposite who always manages to rub Kylie up the wrong way. But if you scrape away the family dysfunction you then find a genuinely creepy haunted house horror film, but with so many facets that just all work.

Housebound is a real hidden gem and I encourage anyone who like a creepy horror mixed with great comic relief to check this out ASAP, it will not disappoint. 9/10

coherence-posterCoherence (2013) 89 Mins Dir – James Ward Byrkit. Starring – Emily Baldoni, Nicolas Brendon, Maury Sterling.

A group of friends meet up for a dinner party, and while they are there a serious of strange events start to unfold . But could this be because of a comet that is passing overhead that evening in close proximity to the earth?

I must admit I was not looking forward to Coherence and after 20 minutes I was hating it. It was full of loud, brash obnoxious 30-somethings who were so far up their own arses it was painful. BUT stay with Coherence as after say 25 minutes things start to happen to the group and the story takes so many twists and turns that your mind starts to hurt. It really did deliver, and it has a really ambitious storyline . It is for the whole just shot in one room , and with a group of people it does give a feeling of intimacy and claustrophobia.

So give Coherence a chance, stick with it and you will find at the ending you may be scratching your head thinking what the fuck, but it is a really impressive , intelligent film. 8/10

What_We_Do_in_the_Shadows_posterWhat We Do In The Shadows (2014) 87 Mins Dir – Taika Waititi, Jermaine Clement. Starring Taika Waititi, Jermaine Clement, Jonathan Brugh, Ben Fransham, Rhys Darby.

WWDITS was the one film today that I was really looking forward to. I had seen the trailer and am a big fan of Conchords so with both anticipation and a little trepidation (well it might be shit) I sat in my usual spot , all alone which is how I usually watch films at festivals.

But I needn’t have worried as it is absolutely wonderful. From the very first moment the audience were in stitches as was I.

WWDITS is a faux documentary following 4 vampires who share a house in the New Zealand , it documents their daily struggles to cope with modern life as well having that need to feed on human blood.

If you are to watch one film this year then make sure it is What We Do In The Shadows, it is something very special and gets the very difficult art of comedic horror absolutely spot on. 9.5/10

starry-eyes-poster-jay_shawStarry Eyes (2014) USA 98 Mins Dir – Kevin Kolsch. Starring – Alex Essoe, Noah Segan, Pat Healy, Amanda Fuller, Shane Coffey.

Last of the night for me (I was too tired to wait for Zombeavers) was the much lauded Starry Eyes (see Oli Ryders review here ) .

Starry Eyes is the story young aspiring actress who works at a coffee shop to make ends meet. She gets an audition for the shadowy Astraeous Pictures and so begins a series of more bizarre meetings where Sarah (Essoe) eventually enters into a very unusual agreement .

I wanted to love Starry Eyes, yet I only liked it. For me it was far too much style over substance although the last 25 minutes were as brutal as I have seen on the big screen. Starry Eyes just didn’t know what it wanted to be. It was stylistically set in the 1970s although it is modern LA, there were hints of Suspiria, House of The Devil and even Kill List.

A beautifully shot film , that just seemed to me to lose something in getting the story across and I just can’t put my finger on what that was? A look at Hollywood from the inside that then tears it’s way out, Starry Eyes is a slow burner that goes ballistic towards the end and definitely won’t be everyone’s cuppa, but it is well worth a look. 7/10

Phew , so that was Saturday. An impressive mix of comedy and horror and not a dud anywhere to be seen. Well done team GRIMM!!

Now just one day left and WOLFCOP!!

Grimmfest Review – Friday 3rd October 2014

GRIMMFEST-2014-FB-HEADERGrimmfest Review – Friday 3rd October 2014

Well Friday was the day I was looking forward to most. The reason? Well the legendary Claudio Simonetti’s GOBLIN were playing a live score to Suspiria. But that was later in the evening , first I had plans to visit the Grimmfest Fringe for today was Headfuck day.

After a change of venue , today’s Fringe was at the Odeon Printworks in Manchester. The Odeon is a behemoth of a venue and one that could seem soulless and sterile. However due to the fact that the seats are so comfy, the tech is of the latest and highest quality and it is so central, then to be honest I loved it. I would quite happily do an entire festival here.

I missed the first film of the day The Devil’s Mile as I had already seen it and frankly didn’t care for it at all. So on to…

The Odeon , Printworks, Manchester

LFO_official_poster-716x1024LFO (2013) Swedish 94 Mins Dir – Antonio Tublen Starring – Patrik Karlson, Izabella Jo Tschig, Per Lofberg.

LFO is a Swedish language feature from debut director Antonio Tublen. Robert (Karlson) lives alone and is interested in sound frequencies , then he discovers that if he mixes four different frequencies together it causes the listener to enter a state of hypnosis. He invites his married neighbours round after setting remotely controlled speakers up in his house. When they arrive he nips out of the room, puts headphones on and then presses the remote. The result being that he can now instruct the couple to do his every bid .

But what will Robert do with new found power? Can he control his own selfish urges and where will it all lead?

LFO is a wonderful concept that plays really well, the acting is top notch and the film is set completely in Robert’s house which adds to a feeling of claustrophobia . The only down side is it felt much longer than 94 minutes and the last 20-30 minutes did really drag, that said the ending was genius and is really something worth checking out. Part sci-fi, part drama, part black comedy. 7.5/10

william_zeroThe Reconstruction Of William Zero (2014) USA 98 Mins Dir – Dan Bush Starring – Conal Byrne, Amy Seimetz, Tim Haberger.

William Zero is an ambitious film to say the least. A geneticist awakes from a coma to find his twin brother has come to look after him. He has total amnesia and his brother must teach him about his past life and relationships. However he soon learns that his brother may not be all he seems and sets out on a journey of discovery that leads to some very dark places.

William Zero is more than just a film about cloning , it is about human relationships and how identical copies of a human being can live and become completely different people emotionally. It also lets the viewer come to certain conclusions without being given all the facts. Headfuck indeed.

Again William Zero is slightly too long and in places loses the viewer and itself with over complication. Although I enjoyed the film I came out of the cinema feeling , well nonplussed . In conclusion I suppose I enjoyed what the film did but not necessarily how it delivered it. But it certainly did make me think, and for a film that is a huge plus. 6.5/10

I then missed the next film Sororal an Australian Western , but by all accounts I didn’t miss a lot. But I needed to get home, eat, and out to GOBLIN!!

The Dancehouse, Oxford Road, Manchester

GOBLIN-WEBSuspiria with a LIVE score performed by Claudio Simonetti’s GOBLIN.

This was a sell-out, I arrived at The Dancehouse and the place was packed (and bloody hot). The whole venue was buzzing with anticipation and also a little trepidation of how Goblin would pull this off.

On taking my seat on the front row, I chatted to a few people and then the lights lowered and Claudio and the band took their places. Claudio was sat in fact about 6 feet in front of me and I had the joy of being able to watch him close up with the film playing in the background.

The whole thing was just an absolute joy. The film just flew by, and I was enthralled. If anyone has seen the Simpson’s episode where Nelson Muntz sees Andy Williams live, that was my expression throughout.


UKHS Editor Andy Deen seen watching Goblin perform Suspiria LIVE!

I can honestly say that the performance was one of the best nights of my life. Total and utter perfection and something that will last a lifetime. I was going to go a little into detail but if I did I could be here for hours, but all I will say is that should Goblin do anything like this near you then you MUST go.

What could be better than a film set in a dance academy having a live score performed in an old art-deco still functioning dance academy? A perfect location for a perfect evening. 10/10

So wow, after that Grimmfest were showing the Argento cut of Dawn of the Dead which features a score by Goblin, but after the Goblin performance I was done in and with tomorrow looking like a 13 hour marathon I went home and crawled into bed.

Just can I say a MASSIVE thanks to Grimmfest for stepping out of their comfort zone and doing something like getting Goblin to perform live. It really paid off and was a huge success.

Which brings us to Saturday…….

Grimmfest review – Thursday 2nd October 2014

GRIMMFEST-2014-FB-HEADERGrimmfest review – Thursday 2nd October 2014

So it’s the start of Grimmfest 2014 and firstly it’s off to a new venue for the early day ‘fringe’ showings. Gorilla is a bar/venue on Whitworth Street West in Manchester and is where many might remember The Green Room and it was the first time I have been there. The bar is nice and open with a great range of beers (at city prices) and the screening room is just to the rear where they hold gigs. Much more positive than last years fringe venue with only a couple of minor issues with sound that was too much bass and a bit of reverb as it is built into a (still working) railway arch.

But can’t argue with it for a venue to watch a couple of films, but no more as we were sat on folding chairs and by the time the second film finished my arse was totally numb. But I waffle so on with the films.

Firstly I missed the first 2 films of the day The House at The End of Time and Truth or Dare but as I arrived at the venue it was good to see someone walking out of Truth or Dare saying “That is just too much for me” . That’s what Grimmfest fringe is all about, watching extreme, interesting and underground films on the big screen.


Julia-posterJulia (2014) USA 95 mins . Dir – Matthew A Brown. Starring – Ashley C Williams, Cary Woodworth, Tahyna Tozzi.

Julia is a brutal rape/revenge film. Following a horrific gang rape nurse Julia Shames (Ashley Williams) is introduced to a new radical form of therapy which sees her attempt to rebuild her life through fighting back and empowering her. Julia is told however that she must not seek out those who abused her , this however could be difficult as she encounters one of her attackers at her place of work leading to thoughts of revenge.

Beautifully shot, Julia harks back to 1970s exploitation thrillers and think of MS.45 and I Spit On Your Grave. A wonderful performance from Ashley Williams is sadly overshadowed by a clunky script , one dimensional characters and an awful ending. A visually stunning film that lacks any substance which is a real shame and you can clearly see director Matthew A Brown is a huge talent. 6/10

THE-WELLThe Well (2014) USA 95 mins. Dir – Thomas S Hammock. Starring – Hailey Lu Richardson, Max Charles, Booboo Stewart.

The Well is the feature directorial debut for Thomas S Hammock, who is better known as production designer for films such as The Guest, You’re Next, All The Boys Love Many Lane and many more. The Well is a post-apocalyptic western where water has become everything and rain is a thing of the past. Kendal (Richardson) is living in an abandoned farmhouse with her gravely ill friend Dean. A greedy water baron starts to ‘evict’ farm tenants one at a time in a brutal manner but Kendal is intent on fending of the brutal thugs.

Hailey Lu Richardson is superb as 17 year-old Kendal and the barren landscapes and harsh environment add to a truly stark and bleak story of survival. But the story just cannot justify the 95 minutes run time and is painfully slow in places. It is all very well having a beautifully shot feature , but when it plods at a snails pace you start to lose empathy with the main characters and their situation. Again you can see the talent from Hammock , he just needs the right, well paced vehicle. 6/10

The Dancehouse

From Gorilla it was on to Grimmfest’s home for the last 4 years The Dancehouse on Oxford Road in Manchester. A stunning art-deco dance school that is a wonderful (if at times frustrating) venue for a film festival.

Herd-milkposter-2The Herd (2014) Short Film UK. Dir – Melanie Light. Starring – Pollyanna McIntosh, Victoria Broom, Jon Campling, Sarah Jane Honeywell, Dylan Barnes.

The Herd is from director Melanie Light, and by god it packs a punch. A group of women are locked in cells in a squalid outbuilding. They are being kept and artificially inseminated to keep them in a perpetual state of pregnancy for the sole reason of harvesting their milk. The place is run by an evil ‘nurse’ (McIntosh) and overseen by two incredibly brutal male guards (Barnes & Campling).

An in your face confrontational film that places females in the role of dairy cows and revokes the most basic human rights one would allow the most vile war criminal. Dark, disturbing and as hard hitting as a heavyweight , The Herd will have you thinking long after the most heart-breaking end credits have finished. Melanie Light wanted to get across a message and she certainly did that . 9/10

letuspreycoverLet Us Prey (2014) UK 88 Mins. Dir – Brian O’Malley. Starring – Liam Cunningham, Pollyanna McIntosh, Hanna Stanbridge.

The big film of the night was Let Us Prey, a UK big screen film starring Game of Thrones heavyweight Liam Cunningham.

New police officer Rachel Heggie is on her first night shift at an old run-down Scottish police station. On her way to work she witnesses a young boy racer hit a mysterious man (Cunningham) who was stood in the middle of the road. She rushes over to find the man has disappeared but the windscreen is smashed and there is blood splattered on the headlights. She arrests the young lad and enters the station for her first shift with him in tow.

Thus begins a night of strange and increasingly violent events as more of the locals are arrested and locked up in the station for various hideous crimes, including Cunningham himself. But why is he there and what are his motives? An old good vs evil tale with an Assault on Precinct 13 twist.

Sadly Let Us Prey was a real let down, it was disjointed, the script lacked any direction and the story grew more laughable and predictable as the film progressed. I adore religion in my horror but this was just not for me at all. Liam Cunningham broods , Pollyanna McIntosh kicks ass and I sat tapping my feet waiting for the end credits. I so wanted to like this (and it has been getting rave reviews, so maybe it is just me?)as it is a UK horror with UK actors but all it ended up as was bad horror by numbers. 3/10

suburbangaothicSuburban Gothic (2014) USA 90 Mins. Dir – Richard Bates Jr. Starring – Matthew Gray Gubler, Kat Dennings, Ray Wise.

So onto the last film of the evening and a complete change of pace with Suburban Gothic. Director Richard Bates Jr has a lot to follow his directorial debut Excision, and he has gone for it big style.

Suburban Gothic sees Raymond (Gubler) return to live with his parents after gaining a business degree but failing to find employment, he has a quick wit, a quicker tongue and a flamboyant dress sense. His mother is overbearing, his father (Wise) is a college football coach and finds Raymond a huge disappointment , so Raymond hooks up with his old school friend Becca (Dennings) . But some Mexican landscapers discover a girls body buried in his parents garden and Raymond believes the house is now haunted and his life takes a series of twists.

A fantastic look a surburban American life, a dark and satirical story that is just hilarious. This will definitely split horror fans, those looking for action, blood or gore will be disappointed but those looking for a fun quirky story far detached from the norm will be pleasantly surprised.

The casting is what makes this film work, Gubler is great and Kat Dennings is stunning but the star is Ray Wise who is just so well Ray Wise. He had me in stitches with just a string of completely inappropriate things a father should never say. There are also some wonderful cameos from The Soska twins, John Waters and a great piece of casting with Jeffrey Combs as the local doctor.

The only negative was the ending that felt a little tacked on, but that aside it was a triumph.

A brilliant way to finish DAY 1 of Grimmfest, and I urge you to check out Suburban Gothic but leave your horror preconceptions at the cinema door. 8/10

So five films today, two great two good and one turkey. So onto Friday 3rd October which is Head Fuck day at the fringe and GOBLIN scoring live to Suspiria in the evening. Oh my!!

SHE (short film 2014) – Review

FF bannershepicSHE (short) (2014)

Dir: Mark Vessey, Chelsey Burdon
Written By: Mark Vessey, Chelsey Burdon
Starring: Fiona Dourif, Philip James
15 mins.

UK release: Frightfest 2014

A woman trapped in an abusive relationship decides to take revenge on her lover, just in time for their anniversary celebrations.

Following a stunning, breakthrough performance in last year’s well-received Curse Of Chucky, alongside her father Brad, the talented Fiona Dourif further solidifies her burgeoning Scream Queen reputation in SHE, which premièred at Frightfest 2014, as a woman forced to turn to drastic measures in order to punish the man who has been abusing her.

Opening with a shot of a couple waking up in bed together – quickly followed by a well-judged, but still rough, rape sequence over some chopped carrots – Dourif’s beautifully pained face remains the focus of this nasty little short throughout. Clearly terrified of Philip James’s He, Dourif epitomises the idea of a trapped, hopeless victim, with a quickly shut door symbolising her lack of an escape.

However, when she turns, and her eyes darken, what should be jarring instead makes perfect sense. Although we only know She for a short time, her transition from desperate woman to triumphant revenge-seeker is totally justified. Considering the two only have one line of dialogue between them, it’s a testament to the strength of their performances that their entire, fractured history is communicated with just a few shared glances.

David Meadows’ – whose credits include The Human Centipede II and III – cinematography contrasts harsh, stark whites against deep, gooey reds. The home the couple shares feels clinical, the interior almost surgical, while every object seems somehow phallic in nature. Sound is of the utmost importance here, too, with the butchering of a carrot by She, and a piece of meat by He, of particular significance.

The first shock of blood is great, but the money shot that follows it is worth watching the film for alone. Boasting some seriously impressive, practical special effects, it’s lengthy and effectively nasty. In fact, when SHE screened at Frightfest, the sequence was met with audible gasps from the audience – in particular, the males present – and it’s easy to see why.

shepic1The parting shot is nicely creepy, too, although it’s subtler than what came before. Considering this was announced as the first in a trilogy, upon its festival debut, it stands to reason that the final glimpse of She is what it is. It will be interesting to see how the story progresses, in light of what state He is in at the end, too.

Special thanks are given to the Soska sisters, following the credits, and their influence on young filmmakers Burdon and Vessey is evident. Their output, too, is gory, thought-provoking and arguably feminist in tone. But SHE has a fire that is entirely its, or rather her, own, one that burns fiercely and is present in the tiniest flicker of a candle’s flame, or the deadly gleam of a steak knife.

Rating: 7/10

SHE will be screened at Grimmfest on October 2nd – info HERE

GRIMMFEST 2014 – The FULL Schedule !!

GRIMMFEST-2014-FB-HEADERThe GRIMMFEST 2014 – The Full Schedule 

So it is almost upon us. Yes Grimmfest 2014 is nearly here and hopefully here you will find everything you need to know about what is showing and who will be appearing. Grimmfest is definitely for the fans and not only is it rammed full of films , also you will find directors & stars mixing with everyone else and having a great time.

If you can’t make it then remember to check out the UKHS site, Facebook page and Twitter feed for live updates , news, reviews and interviews .

If you are going – see you at the bar !!

Tuesday 30th September – Preview Night – Printworks Manchester

anmoes7pm – 7.14pm Tasha and Friends (2013)

Local children’s TV host Tasha decides to shut the show down, her puppet co-stars however have other ideas.


7.14pm – 8.45pm A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984) 30th Anniversary Screening

Freddy Kruger’s original adventure in scream queen suburbia returns to the big screen for this special 30th Anniversary screening.

A group of teenagers are terrorized by “Freddy Krueger”, an evil being from another world who gets to his victims by entering their dreams and killing them with gloves that have knife blades attached to each finger.


babadook9pm – 9.13pm Let God Sort Them Out (2013)

French countryside, 1975. A family is about to sit down for dinner, unaware that the Great Purge has begun.


9.13pm – 10.43 The Babadook (2014)

A single mother, plagued by the violent death of her husband, battles with her son’s fear of a monster lurking in the house, but soon discovers a sinister presence all around her.“the effectiveness of the tension built by Kent along with the terrific performances by Davis and Wiseman is chilling, heartbreaking and utterly terrifying. The Babadook is edge of your seat stuff and it will keep on you on that edge until the final credits roll. Not just one of the best horror movies of 2014, but one of the best movies of the period.


Thursday 2nd October – Grimmfest Fringe – Gorilla, Manchester

HouseEnd-NewPoster-Web10.30am – 12.10pm The House At The End Of Time (2013)

This film successfully combines full-blooded Latin American Gothic melodrama, old-school haunted house chills and an emotionally and psychologically detailed study of maternal instinct and courage, in a complex, intricately constructed time slip narrative which is as much about personal trauma, the various “ghosts” of memory, and the need for closure, as it is about the supernatural. “A patient, reflective work that’s less concerned with ghosts than with how we haunt ourselves…”


Truth-or-dare (1)12.20pm – 1.49pm Truth Or Dare (2013)

Six college kids become internet celebrities when their “Truth or Dare” video, purporting to show a real shooting goes viral. Milking their notoriety on a talk show, they find themselves confronted with their biggest fan – who is less than impressed by the fact that the video was faked, and soon turns up at the location for their next stunt, with disturbing ideas about what they can do to take their project to a whole new level…


she1.50pm – 2.04pm She (2014)

SHE and HE were once lovers but are now trapped in a stale and silent relationship. Physically locked indoors with no comfort or conversation, SHE has increasingly become little more than a plaything and slave, but things are about to change drastically. Plotting a final anniversary dinner, SHE finally takes revenge on her selfish and demanding partner with a gruesome act that will leave just as many scars on her as it does on him.


Julia-poster2.30pm – 4.05pm (2014) Julia

Following a brutal gang rape, timid clinician Julia Shames undergoes a radical new form of therapy to attempt to overcome her overpowering sense of trauma and to rebuild her life. But the therapy unleashes a repressed side of her personality: one which refuses to be a victim, one which encourages her to fight back remorselessly against those who have abused her…
A neon-saturated, giallo-tinged, neo-noir feminist vigilante thriller which harks back to classic genre exploiters of the seventies; but with a cool, elegant style, and a sense of genre self-awareness all its own.


THE-WELL4.30pm – 6.05pm (2014) The Well

Marking the feature film writing and directing debut of production designer Thomas S. Hammock, best known for his work with Adam Wingard on YOU’RE NEXT, THE GUEST, and the V/H/S movies, this visually-striking
post-apocalyptic Western, is a far cry from the lo-fi, mumblecore-influenced aesthetic of such films.
Drawing on the infamous Johnson County War for its narrative of struggling tenant farmers fending off Company thugs, it combines an emotive coming-of-age drama with a stark and stripped-down tale of bloody revenge.
“Apocalyptic nightmare The Well doesn’t need a gimmick – It’s as brutal and beautiful as genre flicks get…”


Thursday 2nd October – Grimmfest Gala Night – The Dancehouse, Manchester

Herd-milkposter-27pm – 8pm The Herd (2014)  + Cast Q&A

Numerous women locked away in inhuman squalor; all of them enslaved, abused, continually impregnated – Paula has been reduced to a mere resource; a provider of milk…
THE HERD has clear-eyed and confrontational purpose in its extremity. By inflicting the life of the average dairy cow on to a group of human women; stripping them of the most basic rights, it calls into question both the fragile nature of those rights and the assumptions that go with them, and, most damningly of all, the ways in which we regard other sentient creatures as lesser than ourselves, and thus as having no rights at all…


letuspreycover8pm – 10pm Let Us Prey (2014) + Q&A

Rookie cop Rachel Heggie begins her first night shift in a near-deserted police station in a dead-end Scottish backwater town. She’s expecting a quiet time of it. But the arrival of a mysterious stranger who seems to know way too much about the building’s inhabitants, and none of it good, proves the catalyst for a night of confrontation and carnage…
Some narrative scenarios are simply infallible. A deserted police station, the sudden intrusion of a stranger and all hell following after. Howard Hawks liked the set up so much, he used it several times, in RIO BRAVO, EL DORADO and RIO LOBO. Now here it is again, with a new spin from debut director Brian O’Malley, who knows his horror tropes and archetypes well; he plays with them, and the viewers, like a cat with a mouse.


suburbangaothic10.10pm – 11.40 Suburban Gothic (2014)

The title tells you all you need to know: Richard Bates, Jr’s eagerly-awaited follow-up to the brutal and blackly comic EXCISION, sees him again splicing sarcastic suburban satire with shocks and splatter, in grim(m)ly hilarious fashion. Again making great use of an all- (cult) star cast, and even finding space for a brief cameo from Bates’ fellow horror mavericks, the Soska Twins. This is, perhaps, less twisted than its predecessor with amplification of the humour over horror – yet it shows the same dark wit and panache.


Friday 3rd October – Grimmfest Fringe – Printworks, Manchester 

devilsmile10.30am – 11.58am Devil’s Mile (2014)

Starting out as a sweaty, seedy, mean-spirited desert road noir, the film quickly veers off into increasingly supernatural and existential territory, as the Devil’s Mile turns out to be just that. A smart, sharply written take on The Road To Hell scenario, this boasts some genuinely unexpected and downright nasty plot twists before a punch line that is both brutal and darkly satisfying. It’s a film the Dimestore Dostoevsky himself, Jim Thompson, would have been proud of.


LFO_official_poster-716x102412.15pm – 1.45pm LFO (2013)

Robert is a man who realizes he can hypnotize with sound; he begins to abuse his power, manipulating and controlling the minds of others.Eventually, the consequences for mankind prove too severe.This mordantly funny, pitch-black comedy offers a sharp and surprisingly moving exploration of the unintentional rise to power of a petty control freak, whose only real desire is to turn back the clock on his own life.


william_zero2pm – 3.38pm Reconstruction Of William Zero (2014)

This film is less about cloning than it is about identity and what makes us human, and more about the psychopathology that grief can sometimes trigger.
Powerfully acted and emotionally engaging; trusting the intelligence of the viewer by not always spelling  things out, it offers a gripping thriller narrative full of  logical, yet entirely unexpected plot twists, and delves into some dark places.


sororal-e14094754586863.50pm – 5.26pm Sororal (2014)

Cassie is tormented by visions of murder. Terrifying images flood her dreams and attack her waking hours. Her dreams are her curse and keep her isolated from the everyday world. Cassie’s life is thrown into disarray when a mysterious detective comes to her with a bombshell: He tells her that her visions are depictions of real murders, murders that she couldn’t possibly have seen. Cassie’s pain now has a face, and she must stop the killing at all costs. The twisted, childlike killer targets Cassie’s loved ones, and the race is on to stop her. Cassie is thrown together with her former lover as they scramble towards a shocking revelation that will change everything.


Friday 3rd October – Grimmfest Main Screen – The Dancehouse, Manchester

GOBLIN-WEB8pm – 9.30pm Suspiria (1977) – with LIVE score from Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin

A young American newcomer at an exclusive European ballet school finds herself caught up in a series of
increasingly violent, bizarre, seemingly supernatural murders…
Argento’s characteristic favouring of flamboyant visual flourishes and startling set-pieces over narrative
cohesion and characterisation here moves him into pure abstraction; an experiment in rhythm, movement and

Italian 70’s progressive rock legends CLAUDIO SIMONETTI’S GOBLIN performing a LIVE score to Dario Argento’s horror classic SUSPIRIA. This truly unique event will take place at The Dancehouse, in Manchester, on Friday 3rd October. ‘we are delighted to be hosting this immersive screening of SUSPIRIA, at this truely apt venue’.


Dawn_of_the_dead10pm – 11.56pm Dawn Of The Dead (1978) The Dario Argento Cut

Following an ever-growing epidemic of zombies that have risen from the dead, two Philadelphia S.W.A.T. team members, a traffic reporter, and his television executive girlfriend seek refuge in a secluded shopping mall.

To tie in with our special presentation of SUSPIRIA with a live performance of the score by Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin, we are screening the Dario-Argento-prepared European cut of DAWN OF THE DEAD, for which Goblin provided the classic soundtrack.


Saturday 4th October – Main Screen – The Dancehouse, Manchester

split111am – 12.24pm Short Film Showcase

The Visitant (2014)

Don’t Play With The Food (2014)

Split (2014)

The Stomach (2014)

Vomica (2014)

All I Know Is Nothing (2014)

Autumn Harvest (2014)


theforgotten-clem12.40pm – 2.25pm The Forgotten (2014) + Q&A

Following his mother’s nervous breakdown, teenager Tommy is sent to live with his estranged father in a tower block squat on a run-down estate. But the father has serious problems of his own, and having to care for his alienated son only adds to them. And then Tommy’s sleep starts to be disturbed by mysterious noises coming from the boarded-up flat next-door. One morning, he awakes to find his bed moved right across the room. Is his increasingly unstable father to blame, or is there something else?


Housebound2.50pm – 4.49pm Housebound (2014)

Kylie Bucknell is forced to return to the house she grew up in when the court places her on home detention. However, when she too becomes privy to unsettling whispers & strange bumps in the night, she begins to wonder whether she’s inherited her overactive imagination, or if the house is in fact possessed by a hostile spirit who’s less than happy about the new living arrangement.
Recalling the gleefully gory and riotously funny early films of fellow Kiwi Peter Jackson, this outrageous fusion of splatter, slapstick, salty dialogue and droll EC-Comic-style chills is a real winner.


solitudo4.40pm – 4.51pm Solitudo (2014)

The directorial debut of writer/actress Alice Lowe (SIGHTSEERS; GARTH MARENGHI’S DARKPLACE), SOLITUDO is an austere tale of a nun in isolation at a rural convent who is terrorized by an encroaching darkness… that may be coming from within.



coherence-poster5.40pm – 7.10pm Coherence (2013)

On the night of an astronomical anomaly, eight friends at a dinner party experience a troubling chain of reality bending events. Part cerebral sci-fi and part relationship drama, COHERENCE is a tightly focused, intimately shot film that quickly ratchets up with tension and mystery.

‘Coherence builds cosmic-scale ideas from small-scale dramas, and slowly opens its narrative door to let in all manner of puzzles and paradoxes that will have viewers in knots for days if not forever. Think of it as Primer (2004) with soul, or Triangle (2009) with dinner parties (and ketamine!)’


What_We_Do_in_the_Shadows_poster7.30pm – 9pm What We Do In The Shadows (2014)

Viago, Vladislav and Deacon are three vampires currently based in the quiet suburb of Te Viago in Wellington NZ. They are finding it difficult to adjust to life in the 21st century, since their aversion to the sunny New Zealand weather pretty much confines them to their home. A fly on the wall documentary captures the trials and tribulations of their undead existence…


starry-eyes-poster-jay_shaw 9.10pm – 10.50pm Starry Eyes (2014)

Welcome to Hollywood, where every coffee shop waitress is a budding star just waiting to be discovered. But young hopeful Sarah Walker is as tired of waiting as she is of waitressing; all those endless, fruitless casting calls. And then, following a series of increasingly bizarre auditions for the shadowy Astraeous Pictures, she is offered what seems to be a dream part. But as she discovers the full requirements of the role, that particular dream starts to turn into a nightmare…


zombeaverscover11.20pm – 12.45am Zombeavers (2014)

ZOMBEAVERS is an action-packed horror/comedy in which a group of college kids staying at a riverside cabin are menaced by a swarm of deadly zombie beavers. A weekend of sex and debauchery soon turns gruesome as the beavers close in on the kids. Riding the line between scary, sexy and funny, the kids are soon fighting for their lives in a desperate attempt to fend off the hoard of beavers that attack them in and around their cabin.


Sunday 5th October – Fringe – Gorilla, Manchester

opengrave10.20am – 12pm Open Grave (2013)

A man wakes up in the wilderness, in a pit full of dead bodies, with no memory and must determine if the murderer is one of the strangers who rescued him, or if he himself is the killer.
“With top-drawer production values, especially the make-up effects, great sound design, music, and tight editing. All contribute to building this eerie world, with its carnage, cacophony of screams, and strong feeling of foreboding. The added isolation of the wilderness location is perfect.“


Sunday 5th October – Main Screen – The Dancehouse, Manchester

dead-snow-212.20pm – 2pm Dead Snow 2 – Red vs Dead

If the worst day of your life consisted of accidentally killing your girlfriend with an axe, chain-sawing your own arm off, and watching in horror as your closest friends were devoured by a zombified Nazi battalion, you’d have to assume that things couldn’t get much worse. In Martin’s case, that was only the beginning…
“I really had an absolute blast with DEAD SNOW: RED VS DEAD and any zombie aficionado is going to have a field
day. I’d even go so far as to say it’s the best zom-com since SHAUN OF THE DEAD (which remains the champ).
It’s pretty tough not to like a movie where there’s a human/zombie love scene set to Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart”. This is definitely one to keep an eye out for”.


get_some_xlg-691x10242pm – 2.16pm Get Some (2014)

After a viral pandemic takes its grip on the planet turning humans into flesh craving mutants, TV adventurer Hunter Smith fights back by presenting Get Some, a show in which he tracks and kills the infected for the entertainment of the surviving population.



life-after-beth2.30pm – 4pm Life After Beth (2014)

A young man’s recently deceased girlfriend mysteriously returns from the dead, but he slowly realizes she is not the way he remembered her.

“This is a touching, frequently hilarious film about grief, loss, and moving on….if you’ve always fantasized about having a sexy undead girlfriend with super-strength, bad breath, and a love of smooth jazz then you’ll love Life After Beth..“


samuria-537x10244.20pm – 5.40pm The Samurai (2014)

A wolf strives through the woods around an isolated German village. Jakob the young local police officer is onto him, but scents something more in the darkness. What he finds is a man, it seems, wild eyed, of wiry build, in a dress. He carries a katana, a Samurai sword. When the Samurai invites Jakob to follow him on his crusade towards the village, it becomes Jakob’s mission to pursue the lunatic to end this wanton destruction. At the end of the night Jakob has experienced too much, is too far from whom he once was. Something hidden has been unleashed to meet the first rays of daylight.


wolfcop6.20pm – 7.40pm Wolfcop (2014)

As a series of strange and violent events start happening, an alcoholic policeman realizes that he has been turned into a werewolf as part of a larger plan, so he investigates with the help of his partner and his friend.
“You will laugh out loud and see some cool werewolf transformations and bloody battle scenes. This is a movie that knows exactly what it is and is basically winking at the audience the entire time. If you enjoy a horror-comedy that’s just out for a laugh and never takes itself too seriously, you’ll enjoy WolfCop.“


thecanalposterlarge-690x10248pm – 9.50pm The Canal (2014) + Q&A

Film Archivist David Williams and his wife and son move into a beautiful old house by the side of a canal, but the house has a dark history, as David discovers. While restoring some early film footage, he discovers that his new home was the site of a shocking murder. In 1902, a man named William Jackson killed his wife and children because he believed his wife was unfaithful. And David has just started to suspect that his own wife is having an affair. Before long, he starts to have disturbing visions, to suspect that something is haunting the house. Something from the past, that is trying to influence the present…


So there you have it. Another wonderful line-up and there are a few tickets left for the full weekend as well as day tickets. Goblin is SOLD OUT but if you get a full weekend pass you will be able to get to see that too.

Tickets are available HERE

Submissions for Grimmfest, 2-5 October 2014 now OPEN!

gf1Submissions for Grimmfest, 2-5 October 2014 now OPEN!

Ever dreamed of getting your movie shown at one of the UK’s leading Horror
Film Festivals as well as in cinemas, on DVD and VOD platforms all around
the world? We’ll here’s your chance! Submissions are open and we’re looking
for the best in Horror, Cult, Weird, and Fantastic movies for our early
October festival. If you think this applies to your very own cinematic
offspring, then we’d love to hear from you.

This year, for the first time, Grimm Up North, in partnership with Raven
Banner Entertainment will be offering a very special competition for all
submitted feature and short films.

gf3When you submit your film for festival consideration, you will also have
the option of entering our Grand Jury Competition. The feature film winner
will be afforded the incredible and unique opportunity of having their film
distributed in the UK by Grimm Entertainment and sold internationally by
esteemed genre specialist sales company, Raven Banner. We will also create
a Grimmfest 2014 compilation of the best shorts for UK distribution.

*EARLY BIRD DEADLINE: 14th Feb – 25th April (Cost: Short £12.50. Feature

*NORMAL DEADLINE: 25th April – 15th Aug (Cost: Short £15.00. Feature

*EXTENDED DEADLINE: 15th Aug – 29th Aug (Cost: Short £20.00. Feature

gf2*For more information on submissions for Grimmfest 2014 head to our
website.’ or visit HERE .