WAR OF THE DEVIL'S 52 SEX-CRAZED MYSTERY RABBITS
WAR OF THE DEVIL'S 52 SEX-CRAZED MYSTERY RABBITS:
AZ FILM EVENTS IN NOVEMBER
by Hal C F Astell
The most annoying thing about local film events is how difficult it is to find out about them. That's where this column comes in, attempting to keep you up to date with the wild, the weird and the wonderful. Here are a host of events to keep your eye on in November.
CULT CLASSICS: DAWN OF THE DEAD
Every year, Cult Classics presents a Dia de los Muertos special and this year's is George A Romero's zombie classic, Dawn of the Dead, on Saturday, 2nd November at Pollack Tempe Cinemas. The apocalypse begins at 9.30pm.
October's Bruce Campbell approved screening of Army of Darkness, sold out every seat, so get your tickets early for this one and stay on afterwards for a bonus screening of Romero's original Night of the Living Dead. That's a groundbreaking double bill!
Tickets to Dawn of the Dead are $11, which rises to $15 for the double bill. As always, there are a host of VIP ticket options. Many regulars pick up the art prints by Victor Moreno or T-shirts that are designed for each event. Moreno lives for the zombies so these ought to be really special.
Check out the details at http://www.cultclassicsaz.com/.
ARIZONA FILMMAKERS SHOWCASE: DR TRIMROSE'S CANNIBALISTIC SEX-CRAZED BLOOD ISLAND OF THE TIKI-BOT
The folk at Dark of the Matinee present interesting local Arizona films once a month at FilmBar in downtown Phoenix. This month's feature is as interesting as they get. It's a late Hallowe'en treat, Larry Lo Presti's delightfully titled Dr Trimrose's Cannibalistic Sex-Crazed Blood Island of the Tiki-Bot.
The fun begins at 10.00pm on Saturday, 2nd November with a couple of short films, It's Go Time and Method, then moves into outrageous territory with Lo Presti's feature. Anyone who watched Blood Bath of the Bat Beast grow over successive Hallowe'en screenings at the Alwun House knows precisely what to expect.
Tickets are $9 and details can be found on the FilmBar website at http://www.thefilmbarphx.com/.
52 FILMS AND MORE! THE THIRD QUARTERLY SCREENING
During 2013, the ever-ambitious local production company, Running Wild Pictures, have been working through a project called 52 Films in 52 Weeks, in which they... well, it's pretty obvious what they're doing, but it's still ambitious and they're still on target.
On Wednesday, 6th November, starting at 7.00pm, they'll be screening the third quarter of these films. That's seven short films, directed by seven different directors including Running Wild co-founder Gus Edwards and regular actor Colleen Hartnett.
It's being held in the banquet hall of a downtown Phoenix restaurant, Mariscos Vuelve a la Vida, with food and drink available both before and after the screening. There will also be live music from Andrew Gork.
Tickets are $5 in advance or $8 at the door. They can be booked online at the Running Wild store at http://www.runningwildfilms.com/rwf-store/.
REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA 5TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR
One of the most abiding recent cult films has been Terrance Zdunich's wild rock musical, Repo! The Genetic Opera, probably the only movie that will ever co-star Bill Moseley, Sarah Brightman and Paris Hilton.
It's toured through town a few times but it's back on Thursday, 7th November at a venue to be confirmed shortly for its fifth anniversary tour. Details will be made available at http://www.facebook.com/azrepo.
$20 gets you admission to screenings of Repo! and their more recent collaboration, The Devil's Carnival, and the accompanying Q&A by Zdunich and director Darren Lynn Bousman. $40 gets you VIP treatment of the same, plus freebies and a promised surprise, along with participation in 'an intimate pre-screening conversation' with Darren and Terrance.
I should highlight that this is not for first timers. Both screenings will be shadowcast by local troupes, Missing Sheep and AZ'Addicts, which means that you'll really be there for the live event accompanying the films rather than the films themselves.
Tickets can be obtained from http://repo-arizona-eorg.eventbrite.com/.
LOFT FILM FEST
Perhaps the most irresistible theater in Arizona, the Loft in Tucson hosts its fourth annual film festival in November, running from the 7th to the 11th, Thursday to Monday. Tickets are $100 for Loft members or $125 otherwise.
That gets you access to an amazing array of films, from Jean Cocteau's timeless 1946 version of Beauty and the Beast to brand new festival films like Rutger Hauer's Il Futuro, the latest John Sayles movie, Go for Sisters, and Alexander Sukorov's new take on Faust, via the perennial musical favourite, The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Many films will have special guests there in person, including the visual effects artist for the latter, Pete Kozachik. Bobcat Goldthwait will be there to present his film, Willow Creek, as will many other actors and directors.
Full details can be found at http://loftcinema.com/loft-film-fest.
TOKUSATSU THEATER: WAR OF THE INFRAS
If you're still buzzed after Steampunk Street VI wraps up, head over to FilmBar in downtown Phoenix for this month's tokusatsu marvel. Damon Foster will be presenting the 1975 Shaw Brothers movie, War of the Infras, starring Sonny Chiba's brother Jiro.
Foster always packs his two hour Tokusatsu Theater slot full of goodies, so expect wild Asian insanity in support, here in the form of Return of Ultraman, along with informative but hilariously entertaining background on where all this material came from.
How can anyone not be thrilled by a movie in which Super Rider takes on Shocker, Dr Death and the dreaded Ambassador Hell?
Tickets are $9 and the event starts at 10pm on Friday, 8th November.
Details can be found at the Tokusatsu Theater group on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TokusatsuTheater.
INDIE WINDOW: RECKLESS ABANDON
With the Arizona Filmmaker Showcase becoming a popular regular event, it's great to see other local showcases pop up in its wake.
Filmmaker Barbara Gresser will be hosting the first Indie Window event at the UltraLuxe Scottsdale Cinemas on Saturday, 9th November, starting early at 4.30pm.
The top billed film is the premiere of her short feature, Reckless Abandon, 'a film about forgiveness and reckoning', with a number of other short films from local filmmakers playing in support, including Over Their Heads and Reply Hazy, Try Again.
Tickets are $10 and details can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/221162961385009.
IFP PHOENIX: MYSTERY BOX CHALLENGE
There are a few IFP film challenges every year but this is a new one. The Mystery Box Challenge is a 48 hour film challenge with a few new twists and all competition films will be screened at the Harkins Scottsdale 101 on Thursday, 14th November.
Usually every team in competition is there in person to scream their support for their films, which always makes for a lively atmosphere. It's also a great place to network and see up and coming filmmakers forced into being as creative as they possibly can.
The doors open at 6.45pm and the screening will begin at 7.00pm. Awards will be presented afterwards and there will be an after party at Blue Agave.
Tickets are $12 and can be picked up at http://mysterybox.brownpapertickets.com/.
RABBIT HOLE: THE PLAY
Here's an odd one for a sweep of film events: a stage play. However almost everyone involved is a local film luminary, including a large number of Running Wild regulars, many of whom were involved with their last feature, The Men Who Robbed the Bank,
It's Rabbit Hole, showing for three days at Space 55 in Phoenix, from 21st to 23rd November, Thursday to Saturday.
Directed by Stacie Stocker with Bill Wetherill, it stars an all Meisner trained cast including Colleen Hartnett, who also produced, plus Michael Hanelin, Jane Fendelman, Shellie Ulrich and Michael Coleman.
Anyone following my monthly reviews of Running Wild films will recognise almost all these names. This is a rare opportunity to see name local film actors doing their thing on stage for a change.
Tickets are $12 online or $14 at the door and details can be found at http://www.space55.org/event/rabbit-hole/.
ZEITGEIST MEDIEN FEST
The newest international film festival to hit the valley is the Zeitgeist Medien Fest, organised by the Arizona Center for Germanic Cultures which has brought us the Phoenix Oktoberfest for the last seven years. It arrives on Friday, 22nd November and runs from 11.00am to 4.00pm.
The featured short film is Counting from director Chiara Farina, which stars a number of local names including Jon Ray, Sean Laguna and Madelynn Eldredge. A dozen other films are screening in support, including five local shorts and others from California and Austria.
Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 on the door (that's $13 and $18 for children under 13) and details can be found at the festival's website, http://zfilmfest.org/.
CULT CLASSICS: PREDATOR
Anyone kicking off the month with the Cult Classics Dia de los Muertos screening of Dawn of the Dead can wrap it up with the regular monthly Cult Classics movie, which in November is Predator.
There can't be too many eighties action movies starring not one but two state governors, but this is the one to watch as Arnie and his memorable team take on whatever is out there that ain't no man.
As with every Cult Classics screening, get your tickets early. They run $11 for general admission or your choice of VIP package deal if you want prints or shirts. Details are available at http://www.cultclassicsaz.com/.
If you're hosting a festival, premiere, screening or other film event in Arizona and you'd benefit from free publicity here at the WOD, please contact me with details. Nobody's going to show up if they don't know it's happening.
Hal C F Astell writes reviews of films from the 1900s to the 2010s at Apocalypse Later, with a focus on what most critics don’t cover. He is the author of two books, Huh? An A-Z of Why Classic American Bad Movies Were Made and Velvet Glove Cast in Iron: The Films of Tura Satana. Both are available at Amazon.