A few months back I, a horror-lovin' film fan sequestered in the Mile High City, was lucky enough to attend Fantastic Fest in Austin, an eight-day event filled with nothing but crazy horror films, tense thrillers, and all manner of obscure something or others designed to confuse, confound and, of course, entertain. Sadly, Fantastic Fest is a once-a-year event, so for those who live outside the realm of the mecca of film that is Austin, us Denver-ites have to seek our dose of obscure indie thrillers and cult classics from other avenues.

Enter Keith Garcia and The Watching Hour.

The Watching Hour, which had its start at the 29th Starz Denver Film Festival in 2006 with films such as Pan's Labyrinth and The Host, is a block of programming devoted to showcasing "films that other theaters are too afraid to show." With first showings airing at midnight and subsequent showings cropping up throughout the festival, recent showings included the horror comedy The Revenant, esoteric sci-fi thriller Truffles, and the fantastic documentaries Cropsey and Best Worst Movie (review). This small block of programming serves as a wonderful way to introduce the masses, especially those who wouldn't otherwise see a horror film, to unique films from across the world.

Although beginning in 2006, Keith has been promoting horror and other obscure films for years before The Watching Hour became a regular fixture of the Starz Denver Film Festival. Getting his start in the local scene at the Landmark Mayan Theater, he began a program during the summer of 1997 aptly titled 'Midnights at the Mayan.' A dual summer series, appropriately titled 'The Terror Train' and 'The Orient Express,' brought classic horror and Asian films to the masses, allowing fans to watch on the big screen films they could once only enjoy from home. A year later the program expanded and became a year-long fare, branching out from these two genres and hosting thematic series' every month, ranging from blaxploitation films to comic-book adaptations and everything in between.
categories Features, Horror