Thursday, 29 July 2010

Toronto After Dark Film Festival 2010: Schedule & Line Up Announced!

Toronto After Dark is one of the big highlights of the festival year here in Toronto, where all the cult, genre, zombie and horror fans come out of the woodwork and are treated to a cinematic buffet of epic proportions. It has grown over the years and always has an exciting line up films along with fantastically enthusiastic audiences filled with great people. With the festival just over 2 weeks away, we finally have the film line up and schedule in our hot little hands... or rather viewed from our wide eyed... eyes.

I'm over the moon excited to see Centurion listed in the line up. It's directed by Neil Marshall (The Descent), a Roman epic, ensemble cast including Michael Fassbender (Hunger, Fish Tank), few-against-many-ness and a woman kicking butt. This is a yes, yes, yes! Actually Centurion was on my wishful thinking 2010 Most Anticipated Releases list, but I had a feeling that it wouldn't make it to regular theatres, and it still might - but I know that I'll be seeing it here! Continuing the epicness, we also Black Death starring Sean Bean in medieval/horror flick which a dash of witchcraft, but more of the witch hunting variety. Switching gears to the outer layer, one film that looks freaking fantastic is from Switzerland and set out even further than that: Cargo is set during a long term space flight hauling cargo with a medic attending the flight and I'm sure it must 'all go wrong' at some point, but it looks freaking beautiful and has a female protagonist - yay!

Getting a little scarier we keep trekking across the globe to Thailand for Phobia 2, a sequel from the directors 4bia / Phobia / See Prang, and I'm all for crazy scary Thai horror omnibuses! Bring 'em on! I've also heard fantastic things about the French film Rubber, which is literally about Robert, the sentient, killer tire. It looks hilarious from the trailer. Keeping it dark, we also have Heartless, which although I'm not a big 'darkness within' fan, I am a big fan of Jim Sturgess and this one looks like it's got a very interesting premise and very polished look although the trailer a little spoilery.

If you'd rather giggle your way through some films there certainly is a fair amount of comedy to choose from, whether it be in the form of a gorefest with Robogeisha, or ode to horror filsm with All About Evil. I'm not the first person to go for the drug comedy-ish selection, but HIGH School looks hilarious, and I love that the trailer doesn't give away too much and it has cast including Michael Chiklis, Adrien Brody & Colin Hanks.

Comedy continues with zombie films which included Zombie comedy Doghouse which has a new spin a la men are from England and women are from Venus - if Venus was covered in zombies! Completing the zombie double bill of the festival is Evil in the Time of Heroes, from Greece.

There is usually one film per year that gets me a bit leery, and often due to the films sexual content. In 2008, it was Donkey Punch, which actually ended up being one of the best films I've seen at the festival through the years. In 2009, it was Embodiment of Evil / Encarnação do Demônio which was completely messed up but 100% consensual so I just file that under 'not for me', and leave it at that. This year, I'm sure I won't be the only one decided on whether or not to see I Spit On Your Grave (2010), a remake of the 1978 film of the same name and both are brutal rape/revenge tales. My initial reaction was to have it be my miss this year, as I'm not a fan of any sexual violence nor revenge and I have no clue why this film would be remake. But, then I read that director Steven R. Monroe will be in attendance at the screening which flips my decision back to being curious as to what he has to say about the film, and I don't think that is a Q&A that I can miss.

I do have to say that I love a festival where the CLOSING GALA is The Human Centipede, which is literally one of the ickyest sounding films I've heard of in years. I'll admit that I didn't watch the trailer for because I don't want to deter myself from seeing it and considering the grossness of the premise (read the TADFF Page if you want to know the specifics of the surgical creation grossness). I have a feeling knowing any more might put me off seeing it, and I hate not seeing everything.

And this is just the feature films! There is also a fantastic looking shorts programs of Canadian and International magnitude which I'll chat in more detail before the festival.

16 Day and counting! See you there :)

Toronto After Dark Film Festival 2010 Feature Film Line Up

Alien vs Ninja
Writer/Dir: Seiji Chiba
Cast: Mika Hijii, Ben Hiura, Shuuji Kashiwabara, Masanori Mimoto, Yûki Ogoe, Donpei Tsuchihira
TADFF Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

All About Evil
Dir: Joshua Grannell
Cast: Natasha Lyonne, Thomas Dekkar, Noah Segan, Mink Stole, Cassandra Peterson

, Official Website & Trailer, IMDb Page

Black Death
Dir: Christopher Smith (Severance)
Cast: Sean Bean, Eddie Redmayne, Carice van Houten
TADFF Page, Official Website & Trailer, IMDb Page

Dir: Ivan Engler
Cast: Anna-Katharina Schwabroh
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

Dir: Neil Marshall (Dog Soldiers, The Descent, Doomsday)
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Olga Kyrylenko, Dominic West
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

Dir: Jake West (Evil Aliens)
Cast: Stephen Graham, Danny Dyer, Noel Clarke, Christina Cole
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

Evil in The Time of Heroes / To kako - Stin epohi ton iroon
Dir: Yorgos Noussias (Evil)
Cast: Billy Zane, Dinos Avgoustidis, Orfeas Avgoustidis
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

Writer/Dir: Philip Ridley
Cast: Jim Sturgess, Clémence Poésy, Noel Clarke, Luke Treadaway
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

HIGH School
Dir: John Stalberg
Cast: Michael Chiklis, Adrien Brody, Colin Hanks, Matt Bush, Sean Marquette, Adhir Kalyan, Mykelti Williamson
TADFF Page, IMDb Page, Trailer

The Human Centipede ** Closing Gala Film **
Dir: Tom Six
Cast: Dieter Laser, Ashley C. Williams, Ashlynn Yennie, Akihiro Kitamura
The Netherlands
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

The Last Exorcism
Dir: Daniel Stamm (A Necessary Death)
Cast: Patrick Fabian, Ashley Bell, Louis Herthum, Iris Bahr, Caleb Landry Jones, Tony Bentley
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

The Last Lovecraft: Relic of Cthulhu ** Opening Gala Film **
Dir: Henry Saine
Cast: Kyle Davis, Devin McGinn, Gregg Lawrence
TADFF Page, Official Website & Trailer, IMDb Page

I Spit on Your Grave (2010)
Dir: Steven R. Monroe
Cast: Sarah Butler, Chad Lindberg, Tracey Walter, Daniel Franzese, Jeff Branson, Rodney Eastman, Andrew Howard
TADFF Page, Official Website & Trailer, IMDb Page

Phobia 2 / Ha phraeng
Dirs: Banjong Pisanthanakun, Paween Purikitpanya, Songyos Sugmakanan, Parkpoom Wongpoom
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

Writer/Dir: Noboru Iguchi (Machine Girl)
Cast: Aya Kiguchi, Naoto Takenaka, Takumi Saitô, Suzuki Matsuo, Yoshihiro Nishimura
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

Writer/Dir: Quentin Dupieux
Cast: Thomas F. Duffy
TADFF Page, Official Website, IMDb Page, Trailer

The Toronto After Dark Film Festival 2010 runs from August 13 - 20,2010 at the Bloor Cinema, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Unknown said...

You Toronto kids are sooooo spoiled! ;)

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I will concede to agree with that :)

The Film Reel said...

Certainly some great movies in the line-up this year. I have to say that The Human Centipede is actually not even close to as disturbing as it sounds. There's very little gore at all and it's more about what your mind can cook up, which I guess is worse than what they could show you.

I agree with you on I Spit On Your Grave. I'm dying to find out what the motivation was behind remaking a film like that. I just don't see the point at all.

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

Settling in to watch Paris, Je T'aime, I hope it's as awesome as everyone says!

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