First Brooklyn gets an “institute of horror studies” and now, on the weekend of October 14, a horror film festival. Ministry is right– everyday is Halloween!
No, but seriously, the first annual Brooklyn Horror Film Festival looks so much better than watching a midnight screening of The Shining for the thousandth time. (All Kubrick and no contemporary Icelandic indie horror makes Jack a dull boy.) The inaugural program boasts two world premieres, five U.S. premieres, an art show and scary storytelling competition at Catland, a performance by celebrated spookster Grady Hendrix, and a film slate so head-spinning it’s like a scene from Poltergeist.
Among the international offerings are a Loatian horror film, Dearest Sister, to be preceded by a live performance by Johnny Butler and Dani Marie; the “gleefully grisly” Mexican shocker We Are the Flesh; and Icelandic film Child Eater (and you thought the Babadook was messed up). There’s also lighter fare: Beyond the Gates is an ’80s-influenced tale about a sinister VHS board game; fresh off of SXSW, Bobby Miller’s The Master Cleanse is a black comedy about a spiritual retreat gone wrong. And then there’s Trash Fire, a flick by Richard Bates Jr. (no relation to Norman Bates) that somehow isn’t about Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.
There’s also a Brooklyn showcase featuring a world premiere of Psychotic! A Brooklyn Slasher, by Bushwick-based Maxwell Frey and Derek Gibbons. The self-described “psychedelic slasher” promises to be the funnest Bushwick horror romp since Summer of Blood.
Check out the fest’s website for a full list of the movies that will be shown at The Wythe Hotel, Syndicated, Videology, and other venues, and judged by film writers Laura Kern and Matt Donato, as well as curator Sam Zimmerman. Tickets ($15-$18) go on sale September 13.