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One of the main reasons I covered Toronto’s
FanExpo this year was to be among the first to hear about the 2012 Toronto
After Dark lineup (and not to get groped in the massive crowds by adolescent
dudes in “U MAD BRO?” t-shirts As it turns out, I got both).
If you aren’t up on things, Toronto After
Dark is the name, the best in genre films is the game. It’s a growing annual
celebration of horror, sci-fi, action and cult movies which is rapidly becoming
an official Big Deal and spoken of with the same kind of reverence as Fantasia.
This year they are bringing it with a vengeance and hosting a record nine
nights of films from October 18th to the 26th at the restored Bloor Hot Docs
Cinema. If you are in or near the Toronto area and want to have any idea what
is happening in genre film, TAD is the comprehensive guide to cool.
So, what's in store for TAD 2012? The first
10 films were announced and trailers were shown at the TAD FanExpo booth this
past weekend and I have to say they are doing it again with an innovative
offering set to shock and amaze! Here’s the rundown:
• [REC] 3: GENESIS (Spain) – Canadian Premiere!
The third instalment in the groundbreaking [REC] series has a dream wedding
descend into a nightmare of undead chaos. This daring new entry in the series
makes some very bold moves, taking the saga into some uncharted territory.
• EXCISION (USA) – A seriously troubled
teen manages her anxiety and indulges her dark fantasies with surgeries on
herself and others. Look at this cast! Traci Lords! John Waters! Malcolm
McDowell! Ray Wise! This is a bloody shocker I can’t wait to see.
• UNIVERSAL SOLDIER: DAY OF RECKONING (USA)
– Canadian Premiere! Van Damme is back alongside Dolph Lundgren for the latest
– rumoured to be best – entry in the UNIVERSAL SOLDIER franchise. Don’t pretend
you aren’t psyched for this or that you can’t tear yourself away from the
original when it plays on TV. JCVD forever baby!
• GRABBERS (IRELAND) – Audiences at
Sundance were thrilled by this nutty little picture where a small Irish town is
beset by tentacle alien bloodsuckers. It seems that alcohol in the bloodstream
is the only hope to resist these creatures! Man, did they ever pick the wrong
country to invade.
• A FANTASTIC FEAR OF EVERYTHING (UK) –
Simon Pegg as a neurotic writer (is there any other kind?) battling his inner
demons, while writing a novel about Victorian serial killers. This dark comedy,
penned by former Kula Shaker frontman Crispian Mills, should rock the house.
• DEAD SUSHI (Japan) – Killer sushi
unleashes bloody hell at a vacation resort. What else do you really need to say
about this? Killer sushi. Japan. Did I mention it comes from the sick freaks
who made MACHINE GIRL and TOKYO GORE POLICE? Well there, now I did. How can you
miss murderous sushi? You can’t.
• DOOMSDAY BOOK (Korea) – This
mini-anthology picture just took Best Film at Fantasia! Three tales of possible
end times scenarios play out here; a machine holocaust where sentient robots
strike back, zombie plague and an asteroid set to annihilate the planet. This
is a huge one to watch for!
• WRONG (USA) – It looks like RUBBER
director Quentin Dupieux ate another blotter of acid and made a new movie! This
time we get a surreal and absurdist crime thriller about a man searching for
his kidnapped dog. This is clearly another must see.
• LLOYD THE CONQUEROR (CANADA) – Lightning
bolt! Lightning bolt! If you don’t know what LARPing is, then let this movie be
your crash course. An epic battle of foam swords sorcery is brewing when three
guys aim to take on Derek the Unholy for the title of king of the nerds. I
predict this one is going to be a big crowd pleaser.
• SUSHI GIRL (USA) – Another mind-blowing
cast on display here – Tony Todd (CANDYMAN), Michael Biehn (TERMINATOR), Danny
Trejo (MACHETE), Sonny Chiba (KILL BILL, STREET FIGHTER) and Mark Hamill (STAR
WARS) all get together for a reunion dinner of some of the most savage and
cunning criminal masterminds. Naturally, things get a bit bloody.
So there you have it folks, the first ten!
Keep watching this space for more in-depth coverage of each of the films over
the weeks approaching the festival. Also, keep watching for the next ten films
to be announced because there is a whole lot more awesome to be had here!
Check out the festival website
(http:/www.torontoafterdark.com) for more information and to get your passes!
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