It’s almost time for the 14th annual Fantastic Fest and the first wave of programming has been unveiled. This year’s fest shines a bright spotlight on the female genre filmmakers. The line up has everything from wild thrills to bloody spills, the festival runs Sept. 20th-27th in Austin, Texas. The festival brings audiences films from all over the world. The best bizarre horror, berzerk science-fiction, and cult classics to be can be found here.
WHEN THE TREES FALL
Ukraine, Poland, Macedonia, 2018
North American Premiere, 88 min
Director – Marysia Nikitiuk
In Attendance – Director Marysia Nikitiuk
Nikitiu, brings us what has been described as a “romantic visual mashup of genres” with her new project When The Trees Fall. Scar and Larysa are desperately in love and suffocating under the tradition and archaic demands of their Ukrainian village. Worlds collide tragically and the lives of people in their wake are shattered.
US Premiere, 93 min
Director – Amanda Kramer
In Attendance – Director Amanda Kramer and Actor/Co-Editor/Production Designer Noel David Taylor, Producers Thomas R. Burke, Jamie Dolan and Leal Naim
Kramer’s new bold low-budget debut LADYWORLD is a teenage thriller that follows a birthday party the gets enveloped into chaos as a mysterious earthquake traps eight teenage girls in a house alone. This challenges their friendships, who they are, and eventually their unraveling grip on reality.
HOUSE OF SWEAT AND TEARS
World Premiere, 104 min
Director – Sonia Escolano
In Attendance – Director Sonia Escolano
Spain’s Sonia Escolano brings tension to religion, faith and belief in House of Sweat and Tears. It follows a violent cult leader who rules with an iron fist but a mysterious outsider comes along and threatens their way of life as their faith and beliefs are challenged throughout this electrifying exploration.
Denmark, The Netherlands, Sweden, Turkey, 2018
Texas Premiere, 93 min
Director – Isabella Eklöf
This sun-drenched drama of this summer vacation has its dark secrets revealed in Isabella Eklöf’s potent debut feature HOLIDAY, an unimaginable exploration of the terror that is young womanhood.
AGFA PRESENTS: I WAS A TEENAGE SERIAL KILLER
World Premiere of New Restoration, 27 min
Director – Sarah Jacobson
Jacobson’s punk-rock spirited films combine the B-movie aesthetics reminiscent of Alex Cox with fresh feminist perspectives in brilliant 2K preservations.
Regional Premiere, 83 min
Director – Ujicha
On the way to visit a friend in another village, two kids try to find a fabled shortcut through the mountain. Instead, they find an amusement park called Violence Voyager, and nothing will be the same.
World Premiere of New 4K Restoration, 88 min
Director – William Lustig
In Attendance – Director William Lustig
The AGFA (the American Genre Film Archive) returns to Fantastic Fest as they restore cult classics like Blood Lake, I Was a Teenage Serial Killer, and Mary Jane’s Not a Virgin Anymore. The fest will include the World Premiere of a restored version of the sleeper slasher classic Maniac with director William Lusting there in attendance! The 4K restoration of the 1980 slasher landmark features splatter SFX artist Tom Savini’s gnarliest work, as well as one of horror’s finest, sweatiest performances from the amazing, legendary character actor/co-writer, all around stand-up guy Joe Spinell.
AGFA and BLEEDING SKULL PRESENT: BLOOD LAKE
World Premiere of New Preservation, 82 min
Director – Tim Boggs
The finest found footage vacation from hell ever captured on VHS, was rescued from the original 1” master tapes!
The United Kingdom, 2018
World Premiere, 129 min
Director – Gareth Evans
Evans brings us his folk horror project APOSTLE starring Dan Stevens. The film takes place in 1905 and is about a mysterious man named Thomas Richardson infiltrating a cult so he can rescue his sister. The cult leader is played by Michael Sheen. The layers of mystery get peeled up layer after layer in this dark commune.
South Korea, 1981
Regional Premiere, 90 min
Director – Kim Ki-young
From Park Chan-wook’s idol comes the twisted tale of lecherous lords and their murderous mistresses. Presented outside of Korea for only the second time, Kim Ki-young’s masterpiece BAN GEUM-RYEON is a lush tapestry of one of Korea’s most demented cinematic minds.
South Korea, 2018
Texas Premiere, 148 min
Director – Lee Chang-dong
Lee Chang-dong’s latest masterpiece weighs the delicate balance between creation and destruction as a writer runs into an old classmate, afterward, the two get pulled into a mystery that shrouds both of them.
US Premiere, 87 min
Director – Samuel Benchetrit
A dark fable that navigates loneliness through Jacques Blanchot’s loss of humanity as he metamorphosizes into a dog. Benchetrit uses this Kafka-esque commentary on our current world examining complex social, political, and interpersonal issues.
US Premiere, 94 min
Director – Daniel Goldhaber
In Attendance – Writer/Producer Isa Mazzei
Alice is a camgirl that has her principles. No public shows, No telling her fans she loves them, and no faking orgasms. Now a mysterious lookalike has taken over her channel and it’s time to bend the rules.
Austin Premiere, 85 min
Director – Gustav Möller
A ghastly crime, an emergency responder on the edge, and a kidnap victim calling in for help. This is all you get to know about this first-time feature filmmaker Gustav Möller’s unforgettably gripping thriller debut.
AN EVENING WITH BEVERLY LUFF LINN
Texas Premiere, 108 min
Director – Jim Hosking
Fantastic Fest alumni director Jim Hosking of THE GREASY STRANGLER and RENEGADES is back with a second feature as absurd, crazy, funny, and mind-melting as his first. Follow Lulu Danger’s very own revolution in a Lynch-meets-Waters dilapidated version of America.
KEEP AN EYE OUT
North American Premiere, 73 min
Director – Quentin Dupieux
This all-night absurd interrogation set in a camp 70s police station is Quentin Dupieux’s new magnum opus, KEEP AN EYE OUT, celebrates his own off brand of quirky humor performed by some of France’s most superb comedic talents.
Czech Republic, 2017
Regional Premiere, 88 min
Director – Aurel Klimt
In Attendance – Director Aurel Klimt
This is the story of Laïka the space dog who contrary to real life, did not meet their demise aboard Sputnik 2 in 1957. In this unusually charming stop-motion musical, Laïka crashes on a peculiar planet inhabited with new friends.
US Premiere, 70 min
Director – Tilman Singer
In Attendance – Director Tilman Singer
Luz enters a police station to report an assault at night. An interrogation progresses and it becomes more and more clear that a demonic being wants to possess her in this irreverent, psychotropic horror film shot on 16mm.
MADAM YANKELOVA’S FINE LITERATURE CLUB
International Premiere, 90 min
Director – Guilhad Emilio Schenker
Israeli director Guilhad Emilio Schenker’s delightfully twisted debut feature MADAM YANKELOVA’S FINE LITERATURE CLUB follows an aged, desperate Lordess on the hunt to seduce one more handsome victim.
MURDER ME, MONSTER
Argentina, France, Chile, 2018
North American Premiere, 109 min
Director – Alejandro Fadel
Visual horror spectacle MURDER ME, MONSTER draws you deep into a fascinating and opaque underworld of serial murders, supernatural obsessions, metaphysical madness, forbidden desires, and one nightmarishly disgusting creature.
THE NIGHT COMES FOR US
World Premiere, 121 min
Director – Timo Tjahjanto
Timo Tjahjanto brings the festival his action thriller THE NIGHT COMES FOR US, the body count will be gruesome and action stars Iko Uwais and Joe Taslim go toe-to-toe for this bone breaking spectacle. A former triad enforcer has to protect a young girl while attempting to escape his former gang, setting off a mayhem on the streets of Jakarta.
THE NIGHT SHIFTER
US Premiere, 110 min
Director – Dennison Ramalho
An attendant at a busy morgue who happens to also converse with the dead puts the people he cares about in peril using his arcane knowledge for bloody vengeance in Dennison Ramalho’s (NINJAS; ABCS OF DEATH 2) twisted and gleefully gross feature debut.
ONE CUT OF THE DEAD
Texas Premiere, 96 min
Director – Shinichiro Ueda
A filmmaker is shooting a zombie feature in an abandoned factory, now something is lurking outside… Is it a zombie apocalypse or just another film shoot going haywire?
OPEN 24 HOURS
USA, Serbia, 2018
North American Premiere, 100 min
Director – Padraig Reynolds
In Attendance – Director Padraig Reynolds
A young woman who set her serial killer boyfriend on fire previously now seeks normalcy in the day to day working world of a 24-hour convenience store, where things are definitely not going to remain normal for long.
Texas Premiere, 81 min
Director – Nicolas Pesce
From the twisted mind of Nicolas Pesce (THE EYES OF MY MOTHER) comes a provocative two-hander chamber-piece — a tense battle of wits and desire between prostitute and trick, predator and prey.
QUIT YOUR LIFE
South Korea, 1971
North American Premiere, 82 min
Director – Park Nou-sik
Actor-director Park Nou-sik unbalances the blind scales of justice as he stalks around Korea with his noose of judgment in this hell-bent revenge drama. Presented in English for the first time!
North American Premiere, 103 min
Director – Sébastien Marnier
In this dreadful cerebral thriller, a former teacher’s dramatic in-class suicide sets in motion a young substitute teacher slowly realizing he is in over his head after taking on a class of gifted students.
World Premiere, 129 min
Director – Crazy Pictures
It starts with a few isolated incidents but suddenly ‘poof’ it’s all over Sweden. There are some who were prepared and others who weren’t. Ready or not, things are about to get unthinkable.
US Premiere, 87 min
Director – Demián Rugna
In Attendance – Director Demián Rugna
Strange phenomena is going on in a Buenos Aires neighborhood. Demián Rugna’s constantly surprising, unnerving, and down right spine-chilling horror film has one goal: to scare the ever living crap out of you.
THE WOLF HOUSE
North American Premiere, 73 min
Directors – Cristóbal León & Joaquín Cociña
In Attendance – Director Cristóbal León
In this animated tale it follows the unsettling story of Maria, a girl punished with a hundred nights alone in a cabin in the woods. Supposedly restored from the archives of a German colony by the Chilean government.
World Premiere, TBD min
Director – Julius Avery
In Attendance – Director Julius Avery and cast including Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, Pilou Asbaek, John Magaro, and Mathilde Ollivier
J.J. Abrams joins the line-up with his World War II horror thriller OVERLORD that he produced through Bad Robot. With Director Julius Avery and Jovan Adepo in the starring role, the film will be making its World Premiere at Fantastic Fest. In the upcoming WWII horror-thriller OVERLORD, a group of American paratroopers get dropped into a Nazi-occupied France on the eve of D-Day. As they struggle to carry out their seemingly impossible mission, they discover a secret Nazi lab carrying out terrifying and bizarre supernatural experiments.
Fantasic Fest runs from September 20th-27th in Austin, Texas. See website for badges and tickets, now on sale! Will you be attending Fantastic Fest? Sound off in the comments below, over on Twitter, or in our Facebook Group!