Force Majeure trailer

I literally just walked out of a screening of Force Majeure at Fantastic Fest 2014 and had to let you know about it. Thankfully for me, a new poster and trailer came out earlier this week.

Directed by Ruben Östlund, the film follows a family who are on a ski vacation. When an avalanche unexpectedly hits, everyone is forced into a life or death situation where they’ll reveal their true colors. In one case, they aren’t what they expect. That might sounds like the set up to some kind of horror movie, but Force Majeure walks an absolute stellar tightrope of tone, seamlessly going from uncomfortable to funny, then tense and human. It’s poignant, it’s hilarious, it’s beautifully shot and it’s totally unexpected. The film won a special award at Cannes earlier this year and has been slaying the festival crowd, myself included. Below what the latest Force Majeure trailer and see the new poster. Read More »

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Automata trailer

The tenth annual Fantastic Fest kicks off in Austin TX in just over a week, and the final wave of programming has just been unveiled. There’s a lot here, and in addition to the films the fest has announced appearances from James Gunn, Edgar Wright, Nicolas Winding Refn, and Ti West.

This programming wave might be the best yet, as it features the Toronto midnight madness hit It Follows, the full director’s cut of Nymphomaniac, rare exploitation gem The Astrologer (presented by Refn), the premiere of The Hive, sci-fi Automata, and Joe Lynch’s one-room action thriller Everly. Then there’s perhaps the thing I most want to see in this group, the US debut of Duke of Burgundy, the new film from Berberian Sound Studio director Peter Strickland. Check out the lineup below, and we’ll have trailers for quite a few of these shortly.  Read More »

Nightcrawler Halloween

This year is the tenth anniversary of Fantastic Fest, and the fest will close with a movie we’ve been anticipating over the past couple months: Nightcrawler, starring Jake Gyllenhaal as a seedy news reported in Los Angeles. That film was announced today along with a host of other movies, including the new Keanu Reeves film John Wick, for which Reeves will make his second appearance at the fest. Then there’s The Creeping Garden, a documentary about slime molds and the people who study them; neo-giallo thriller The Editor, and new Studio Ghibli movie The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, and Sion Sono’s new film Tokyo Tribe.

The full second wave lineup is below. I’ve added trailers for most of the films. Note that I haven’t watched all those trailers in full yet, and there’s a chance that one or two are not safe for workRead More »

MondoCon schedule

Movie heaven comes to Austin, Texas during the third week of September. Not only is that when Fantastic Fest is happening (much more on that in the coming days) but the fine folks at Mondo are simultaneously hosting their first convention, MondoCon. But no, this isn’t going to be just a place to buy posters. As discussed a few months back, MondoCon will be a gathering for everything a movie fan or collector could desire.

Mondo has just released the full programming line-up, as well as a few small glimpses at the goodies. Among the highlights? A mini-gallery exhibition of work based on The Iron Giant, including that film’s score available on vinyl. The lost score to 2001: A Space Odyssey will be on sale along with a panel discussion. A never-made 1983 U.S. Godzilla film will be revealed through storyboards and concept images. Plus a screening of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre with live score, the world premiere of a documentary on the 2000AD comic brand and much more.

And that’s just part of it. Will there be posters? You bet. Lots of surprise posters along with the first Alex Ross Mondo poster. Will there be guests? Tons, including newly annoucned names like Bryan Lee O’Malley, JC Richard and William Stout.

The event takes place September 20-21 in Austin and tickets are still on sale. Below, read the full programming press release. Read More »

the-babadook-sam

2014 marks the tenth year of Fantastic Fest, and also the re-opening of the South Lamar location of the Alamo Drafthouse. The team has announced the first programming for Fantastic Fest X (or #FFX) with much more to come. The first round includes one of our Sundance faves, The Babadook (above), along with the US premiere of Kevin Smith‘s Tusk, and the debut of V/H/S/ Viral. We’ve got the full first wave list below, along with the fest’s poster (by Geoff Darrow!) and info on some of the other fest events, such as an Austin version of The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail, and the Balderdash-like movie synopsis game Maltins, with Leonard Maltin in attendance to oversee proceedings. Read More »

Mondo Logo

There are many things wrong with mega-conventions, and the team behind MondoCon is going to try and fix them. At many conventions the food sucks, it’s too crowded, and the lines are too long. These are problems Mondo knows about, and seeks to improve upon for the company’s first con. The stuff they won’t be able to fix — in fact, what Mondo might make worse — are the many geek Sophie’s Choices fans constantly have to make.

MondoCon, the first Mondo-centric pop culture convention, takes place September 20-21 in Austin, Texas. (That’s during the opening weekend of Fantastic Fest.) Tickets go on sale Wednesday June 4. An initial press release giving some general idea about the convention came online Monday but it raised many more questions than it answered. I got on the phone with Mondo’s Creative Director Justin Ishmael to get more answers. We talked about questions such as, how Mondo will handle the lines, what kind of events will be at the con, which artists are attending, and exactly how big the event will be.

Ishmael was able to answer some of those questions, as well as others. The prevailing feeling I got speaking to him is that, much like Comic-Con, MondoCon is going to have so much excellent stuff happening simultaneously that fans will have to make some really tough decisions on what they want to do over the course of the two days. Read more about MondoCon below. Read More »

Alamo Drafthouse Takes Fantastic Fest 2013 On Tour

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The Alamo Drafthouse have announced they will be taking Austin’s Fantastic Fest on tour, showing movies from the festival at all Alamo Drafthouse markets over three weekends in November. Films include Big Bad Wolves, Borgman, Cheap Thrills, Confession of Murder, The Congress, Grand Piano, Journey to the West: Conquering The Demons, and Why Don’t You Play In Hell. Tickets are now available on the Alamo website. After the jump you can learn more and read the press release announcement.
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Machete Kills (10)

In Machete Kills, director Robert Rodriguez once again celebrates guns, babes, and manly men. This sequel to Machete finds many ways to combine those three factors, offering a new permutation every few minutes. The action is dumb and goofy and very self aware, and Machete Kills is occasionally kind of a blast. The cast is game for anything, and few actors stick around long enough to wear out their welcome.

If only the same could be said for the film, which is long, soggy, and distracted by it’s own excess. Machete Kills is a two-hour Robot Chicken special that features humans instead of action figures, and its schtick wears thin well before everyone runs out of energy.  Read More »

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