Thursday, 31 October 2013

Frightfest Hallowe'en All-Nighter

Last Saturday, after years of not being able to make it for one reason or another, my dad and I finally went to the Frightfest All-Nighter. We had a fine array of sweets and snacks (I highly recommend Sainsbury's chocolate eyeballs with popping candy), a flask of coffee for thems as can drink it and some sugary, fizzy goodness for me.

At 6.30 pm the lovely Frightfest team came to introduce the films and we were off. I'm not going to go in to too much detail about everything that happened in the next thirteen or so hours. There was break-dancing, tears of laughter and some very drunken hugs, calls for a disco dance competition and a huge amount of confusion about what time anything was happening given that the clocks went back that night. We could be here all day, so please allow me simply to treat you to a quick run down of the films.

First up was Soulmate. It's the story of a woman who moves to a haunted cottage in the beautiful Brecon Beacons after the death of her husband and makes a connection with the spirit of the former owner. This wasn't a great film. It was quite spooky but there was some really clunky dialogue. However, I did find myself enjoying it, even though I thought I probably shouldn't. It was quite cheesy, but the perfect guilty pleasure for a rainy day. It's worth it for the brilliant performance by the director's dog, Anubis, surely a star in the making.

Next came Patrick, introduced by the lovely Sharni Vinson, who I was super excited to see because she was so good in both You're Next and Step Up 3D - yep, already a legend. I loved Patrick! It's all about telekinesis and obsession and is both crazy and brilliant. There are some really gross moments and sections where I seemed to be jumping out of my chair every few seconds. If you're a horror fan, give this a watch, I'm sure you'll love it too.

Mark of the Devil took away two hours of my life that I'll never see again and made me feel a little disappointed in myself for sitting all the way through it. I did learn that Udo Kier was a bit of a hottie in his youth...

 but that didn't really make up for anything.

I also loved Discopath. An ingenious film set in 1980 about a man driven mad by disco. It's funny and thrilling and had an awesome soundtrack that kept me grooving in my chair despite it being some ridiculous time of night. I hope the suggested sequel doesn't take too long to manifest.

The Station was like an Austrian The Thing but with an environmental message. There were some good monsters and horrible happenings that still make me feel a little queasy, all wrapped up in a good story, I just wish they'd stuck with a direct translation of the original title and called it Blood Glacier, because how much cooler does that sounds?!

Finally, at something like 5.30 in the morning (maybe) was Nothing Left to Fear, the tale of a minister moving to a country town with his family only to discover there's more going on than meets the eye. Hmmm, this was okay. There were some good jumps and creepy bits, but I've seen very similar stories done better, and without some of the massive plot holes this had. Still, you can never really dislike something starring Clancy Brown. Clancy Brown is awesome.

If you like horror films about demons, give it a watch, but don't set your expectations too high.

My goodness, this has got a bit long! It was a fun night spent in brilliant company, and I have to credit the Vue West End with having very comfortable seats. If you love horror films and can cope without the sleep, come along next year, you really won't regret it and I might even let you share my sweeties.

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