The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference and Festival revealed my favorite section of films today, the Midnighters. Featuring 11 genre films, including nine World Premieres, 2015’s Midnighter slate includes thrillers, sci-fi and dark comedies from a mix of new and veteran filmmakers. These 11 Midnighters are included in the 145 total features screening at SXSW Film 2015 (most of which were announced last week).
“Creepy, clever, engrossing, and frightening are just a few words that come to mind when I think about this year’s SXSW Midnighters lineup,” said SXSW Producer & Senior Programmer Jarod Neece. “These nine World Premieres and two Festival Favorites are helmed by five, first-time filmmakers and several SXSW alumni. We will be screening four films a night at midnight during all nine days of SXSW, and we can’t wait to unleash them on the SXSW audiences!”
Included in the list are THE NIGHTMARE, a very intriguing mixed-format documentary with reenactments of nightmares that I had the chance to see at Sundance – because it’s real, or atleast the people interviewed think it is real, the film was one of the most frightening I saw that week. Also on the docket, luckily, is Turbo Kid, the one Park City at Midnight film that I didn’t have a chance to see. I am also really looking forward to DEATHGASM, a New Zealand metal horror film starring Milo Cawthorne, the lead of one of my favorite films I ever programmed at AFF, BLOOD PUNCH.
The Corpse of Anna Fritz (Spain)
Director: Hèctor Hernández Vicens, Screenwriters: Hèctor Hernándes Vicens, Isaac P. Creus
Anna Fritz, a famous and beautiful actress, has died recently. Three young men sneak into the morgue to see her naked. Fascinated by her beauty, they decide to become the last people to have sex with her. Cast: Alba Ribas, Cristian Valencia, Bernat Saumell, Albert Carbó
Deathgasm (New Zealand)
Director/Screenwriter: Jason Lei Howden
New kid in town Brodie and bad-boy Zakk quickly bond over their mutual admiration of heavy metal. But when these two metal thrashing losers unwittingly summon malevolent forces, their dreams of stardom may just have to be put on hold. Cast: Milo Cawthorne, James Blake, Kimberley Crossman, Stephen Ure (World Premiere)
Director: Alistair Legrand, Screenwriters: Alistair Legrand, Luke Harvis
When a single mother and her two young children are tormented by an increasingly strange and intense presence, she turns to her science teacher boyfriend to help take on the violent forces that paranormal experts are too frightening to face. Cast: Ali Larter, Arjun Gupta, Max Rose, Merrin Dungey, Chloe Perrin, Kurt Carley, Patrick Fischler, Wilmer Calderon, Tom Wright, Laura Margolis (World Premiere)
Director: Patrick Kennelly, Screenwriters: Sigrid Gilmer, Patrick Kennelly
Obsessed with her sexy roommate, Jill violently imprisons Jennifer in their apartment in a twisted attempt to bring them closer together. Cast: Bethany Orr, Mary Loveless, Wes McGee, Sheresade Poblet, Jill Jacobson, Dana L. Wilson, Kristin Minter, Robert Maffia, Jules Bruff, Juan Riedinger (World Premiere)
Director: Adam Mason, Screenwriters: Adam Mason, Simon Boyes
Returning from vacation, the Miller family find their home has been broken into. After cleaning up the mess they continue with their lives, shaking off the feeling of being violated. But little do they know the nightmare has just begun. Cast: Jeremy Sisto, Kate Ashfield, Ty Simpkins, Ryan Simpkins, Amy Smart, Ross Partridge, Vince Ventresca, Bruno Acalinas, Ethan Harris-Riggs, Jamie Lee (World Premiere)
He Never Died
Director/Screenwriter: Jason Krawczyk
Jack is a man battling his eternal struggle with cannibalism. There are very few reasons to live when you can’t die. Cast: Henry Rollins, Steven Ogg, Kate Greenhouse, BooBoo Stewart, Jordan Todosey (World Premiere)
Director: Karyn Kusama, Screenwriters: Phil Hay, Matt Manfredi
While attending a dinner party at his former home, a man thinks his ex-wife and her new husband have sinister intention for their guests. Cast: Logan Marshall-Green, Tammy Blanchard, Michiel Huisman, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Lindsay Burdge, John Carroll Lynch, Mike Doyle, Michelle Krusiec, Karl Yune, Jordi Vilasuso (World Premiere)
Director: Rodney Ascher
The Nightmare is an original horror documentary from the Oscar winning producer of Undefeated, the producer of Jiro Dreams of Sushi, and the producer of The Pact and is directed by Rodney Ascher, the acclaimed director of the Room 237.
Director/Screenwriter: Mickey Keating
A family intervention goes horrifically awry within the snowy confines of an isolated lake house. Cast: Lauren Ashley Carter, Dean Cates, Brian Morvant, Larry Fessenden, John Weselcouch (World Premiere)
Turbo Kid (Canada / New Zealand)
Director/Screenwriter: RKSS Collective
In a post-apocalyptic future, The Kid, a young solitary scavenger obsessed with comic books must face his fears and become a hero when he meets a mysterious girl named APPLE.
Cast: Michael Ironside, Munro Chambers, Laurence Leboeuf, Edwin Wright, Aaron Jeffrey
We Are Still Here
Director/Screenwriter: Ted Geoghegan
In the cold, winter fields of New England, there sits a house that wakes up every 30 years and demands a sacrifice. Cast: Barbara Crampton, Andrew Sensenig, Larry Fesseden, Lisa Marie, Monte Markham (World Premiere)