Not long ago, I brought you a short list of "the best horror flicks you haven't seen yet," and it got a whole lot of responses and click-traffic. And if spending all my time around horror movies has taught me one thing, it's the importance of sequels! So having said that, I welcome you to Part 2. Unless you're a film festival junkie (or you work in the industry) you probably haven't experienced these terrors yet, but each one of 'em comes firmly recommended by yours truly. (And yes, I DO see some lame-o horror flicks at these festivals. I simply choose to focus on the ones I dig. I'm nice that way.)
Frontiere(s) -- He'll get a lot more attention for his upcoming Hitman adaptation than he will for this blitheringly derivative horror flick, but director Xavier Gens is clearly someone to keep both eyes on. So while this freakishly frenzied French Frontiere(s) flick is little more than a genre stew made with equal parts Texas Chainsaw, Hostel, and The Descent -- there's just no denying that it's an amazingly energetic concoction. Not brilliant, but highly recommended nonetheless. (Full review here.) Arrival: Snagged as one of the "films to die for" as part of the After Dark '07 slate -- which means you can catch it starting November 9.
Teeth -- When you get to a festival, there's a certain "buzz" already in motion for certain flicks -- and when people caught wind of the premise of Teeth, that "buzz" sort of went into overdrive. Just in case you missed it: Teeth is a slyly satirical horror film about a teenage girl who goes through a rather unpleasant sexual awakening when she (and others) discover that she's got TEETH in a decidedly ... female ... area. (Full review here, and Kim's right here.) I've heard opinions that range from "brilliant" to "moronic," but I'm definitely among the thumbs-up contingent. Arrival: It looks like Roadside Attractions will be releasing the flick in New York and Los Angeles on November 30 -- which is weird because I could have sworn that Lionsgate and Weinstein had split the rights earlier this year. Expect the DVD by March of 2008.
The Mother of Tears -- Horror master Dario Argento is back with his most entertaining flick in about two decades. It's a pulpy and tongue-in-cheek apocalyptic thriller about an evil idol that causes all sorts of crazy occult-style mayhem: Monster attacks, mass suicides, witches' conventions, pure bloody murder ... it's all rather comic-booky and appreciably gory. So while it's certainly not in the same class as Suspiria or Tenebrae -- it's a heck of a lot more fun than Argento's last three efforts. (Full review here.) Arrival: The Weinsteins purchased it for DVD release, but word is that Myriad Pictures might be planning a limited theatrical release before the video date. strong>The Living and the Dead -- I was on the Fantastic Fest 2006 features jury, and we had no problem giving Simon Rumley's The Living and the Dead the number one prize. This is a fascinatingly weird and disconcerting little "domestic thriller" in which we have three characters, one location and a whole lot of emotionally disturbing goings on. I don't want to give too much away (plus I'm hoping you'll actually rent the movie), but let's just say this is NOT your typical horror movie. But still it freaked me out. (Full review here.) Arrival: TLA Home Video has acquired the DVD rights, which means you can probably get hold of the flick within the next several months.
Exte: Hair Extensions -- And this year I was on the Fantastic Fest horror jury, and this one was the big winner. Yep, it's an unapologetically bizarre J-horror flick about ... wait for it ... killer hair extensions. You just won't believe how many different ways hair can kill you! Full of arcane laughs, bizarre plot turns, and more-than-enthusiastic dispatches, Exte is certainly, well, it's unique. And that's putting it mildly. (No full review yet; I'd have to watch the flick a second time, honestly.) Arrival: None scheduled as of yet. I don't even think is has a North American distributor yet.
End of the Line -- With so many really rotten movies hitting the screens and the shelves, I just have to wonder: Why has this creepy Canadian import NOT found a home yet? I saw it at Toronto (September 2006) and Fantastic Fest (September 2007) and the flick received enthusiastic responses at both locations. It's about a huge bunch of cult-religion loonies who go nutty and stab-happy inside of a broken-down subway tunnel. And it's fun! (Full review here.) Arrival: Still to be announced, but the director promises to let me know when some sort of deal goes down.
Stuck -- Maybe I'm just a sucker for Stuart Gordon, but I think he's one of the most consistent genre-men out there. His latest is a darkly funny piece of fact-based horror: A drugged-out nurse smashes into a homeless man with her car -- and then parks her car in the garage ... with the dying man still "stuck" in the windshield! Solid work from Mena Suvari and Stephen Rea help a whole lot, but the story is the star here -- and Gordon is as fascinated by the stuff as we are. (Full review here.) Arrival: Not sure, really. The IMDb says Image Entertainment has the DVD rights, but that's all we know so far.
[ Take a look back at Part 1 ... stay tuned for Part 3! ]