Fantasia 2012 announces first wave of films and events

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It’s that time again. The Fantasia Film Festival is once again imminent, ready to take over Montreal for three weeks with a barrage of genre films and oddball features from all over the world. Running from July 19th to August 7th, this year’s iteration promises to be another insane smorgasbord of the world’s wildest movies. Besides the initial list of films that have been confirmed below, expect another 10,000 or so when the full lineup is revealed.

We can also expect appearances from Tony Todd and Mark Hamill, promoting their new movie Sushi Girl, directed by Ken Saxton, as well as a spotlight on Jennifer Lynch (!), which will include her new feature Chained and the Hissss making-of documentary Despite the Gods. The Documentaries from the Edge section is getting a boost this year as well, though only two titles (My Amityville Horror and We are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists) have been confirmed so far. Finally, Fantasia will also play host this year to a peculiar art show entitled If They Came From Within, featuring art for never-made films concocted by the likes of Jason Eisener, Bruce MacDonald, Vincenzo Natali, and more.

The other announced films:

11/25 THE DAY MISHIMA CHOSE HIS OWN FATE (Japan) Dir.: Koji Wakamatsu
Yukio Mishima’s masterwork isn’t his literature, but the political commitment he pursued even unto death. By retracing the journey of the revolutionary writer, Japanese cinema’s enfant terrible Koji Wakamatsu delivers a violent, rabid critique of militancy. A timely, necessary film. Official Selection: Cannes 2012. North American Premiere

AS LUCK WOULD HAVE IT (Spain) Dir: Alex de la Iglesia
Spain’s madman auteur reworks Billy Wilder’s ACE IN THE HOLE for today’s world as an absurdist comedy. Stars José Mota and Salma Hayek. Official Selection: Berlin 2012, Tribeca 2012. Canadian Premiere

BLOOD-C: THE LAST DARK (Japan) Dir: Naoyoshi Shiotani
In a futuristic Tokyo where youth struggles for its freedom, Aya must face off against the man who has a stranglehold on the city and nightmarish creatures that are spreading terror. Twelve years after BLOOD: THE LAST VAMPIRE, here is the big comeback to the big screen of this influential Japanese animation franchise. International Premiere

BEAST (Denmark) Dir: Christoffer Boe
Nicolas Bro, Marijana Jankovic and Nikolaj Lie Kaas star in this disturbing and poetic nightmare drama that treats Love as both a force of nature and a chemical imbalance. Official Selection SXSW 2012 Canadian Premiere

CRAVE (USA) Dir: Charles de Lauzirika
The long anticipated feature directorial debut from regular Ridley Scott collaborator de Lauzirika stylishly depicts an alienated crime scene photographer (Josh Lawson) teetering on the verge of vigilantism. Also stars Ron Perlman and Edward Furlong. World Premiere

CITADEL (Ireland-Scotland) Dir: Ciarán Foy
A man suffering from extreme agoraphobia confronts murderous packs of feral, hooded children in this powerful and frightening film that took home an award at this year’s SXSW. Canadian Premiere

DOOMSDAY BOOK (South Korea) Dir: Yim Pil-sung and Kim Ji-woon
Yim Pil-sung (HANSEL & GRETEL) and Kim Ji-woon (A TALE OF TWO SISTERS) join forces in this anthology film featuring three stories tackling in very different ways as many apocalyptic scenarios. Be prepared to deal with a zombie invasion, a delicate moral dilemma raised by a robot who’s the reincarnation of Buddha, and a most unusual object that’s about to destroy the planet! Canadian Premiere

GRACELAND (Philippines/USA) Dir: Ron Morales
A working class chauffer is dropped into the darkest side of the Philippine underworld when his daughter is kidnapped by ruthless mobsters in this shocking crime drama that won major acclaim at the Tribeca Film Festival. Canadian Premiere.

ERRORS OF THE HUMAN BODY (Germany-USA) Dir: Eron Sheean
Written and directed by Sheean, who penned last year’s THE DIVIDE, ERRORS OF THE HUMAN BODYis an unsettling, stylistically bold look at the personal and ethical horrors of modern genetic engineering, oscillating quite ambiguously between pure science and terrifying science fiction. Stars Michael Eklund. World Premiere.

FUNERAL KINGS (USA) Dir: McManus Brothers
They’re rebellious, irreverent and vulgar. They’re… 14-year-old! Even though they’re altar servants, Andy and Charlie are hardly choirboys. When they meet David, a little mama’s boy, they’ll do anything to force their life philosophy on him. From then on, they’ll really get into trouble. With this debut film that was a sensation at South by Southwest, the McManus Brothers impose themselves a new comic duo to keep a close eye on. Official Selection: SXSW 2012. International Premiere

THE HUMAN RACE (USA) Dir: Paul Hough
From the director of THE BACKYARD comes this stunning action/sci-fi/horror film that challenges conventions and takes enormous risks (among them the casting of a charismatic one-legged lead, a deaf performer who execute his scenes via subtitled sign language, etc). An astoundingly impressive achievement. World Premiere

ISN’T ANYONE ALIVE? (Japan) Dir: Gakuryu Ishii
Filmmaker Gakuryu Ishii, who notably directed ELECTRIC DRAGON 80.000 V under the name Sogo Ishii, returns with this completely off the wall adaptation of an absurdist play about students at a university campus who mysteriously die one after the other. The apocalypse has rarely been this strange and funny.Canadian Premiere

LA MEMORIA DEL MUERTO (Argentina) Dir: Javier Diment
This bedazzling giallo-inspired supernatural horror film boasts a strong visual design and a ferociously Grand Guignol sensibility. Prepare for Latin American demonic fury. World Premiere

A NIGHT OF NIGHTMARES (USA) Dir: Buddy Giovinazzo
One year after winning an award at Fantasia for his entry in THE THEATRE BIZARRE, COMBAT SHOCK director Giovinazzo is returning to Montreal with this hair-raising and unique occult chiller that stars Marc Senter and Elissa Dowling. World Premiere

POONGSAN (South Korea) Dir: Juhn Jai-hong
In this dark, intense thriller written by Kim Ki-duk (BAD GUY), a mysterious man who regularly crosses the border between the two Koreas to smuggle goods or people finds himself being hunted down by both sides, which will have their hands full with him.North American Premiere

RESOLUTION (USA) Dirs: Justin Benson and Aaron Scott Moorhead
A captivating waking nightmare of a film, RESOLUTION tore out of nowhere when it premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in April and made almost every critic’s best-of-fest lists. Be prepared for something truly original, scary and special. Canadian Premiere

ROLLER TOWN (Canada) Dir: Andrew Bush
A riotously funny, high-energy send-up of that ever-so-brief but immortal trend of disco celebration films that boogie-blasted cinemas in the early ’80s, ROLLER TOWN is the warped brainchild of comedy collective Picnicface, brilliant sketch comedians hailed by many as the SCTV of our day. Official Selection: Slamdance 2012 Quebec Premiere

V/H/S (USA) Dirs: David Bruckner, Glenn McQuaid, Radio Silence, Joe Swanberg, Ti West, Adam Wingard
The latest in an ongoing wave of both sledgehammer-strong anthology horror features and subjectively-shot found-footage chillers, V/H/Sranks among the best of the pack in both camps. Official Selection: Sundance 2012 Canadian Premiere

WARRIORS OF THE RAINBOW: SEEDIQ BALE (Taiwan) Dir: Wei Te-Sheng
The most expensive Taiwanese action epic ever made, WARRIORS is the extraordinary untold story of the indigenous tribe, the Seediq and their fight for survival. Executive produced by John Woo. Presented roadshow style for the first time in Canada, uncut 4 hour version with intermission!

WRONG (USA) Dir: Quentin Dupieux
If you were among those who caught the international premiere of Dupieux’s previous oddity RUBBER at Fantasia in 2010, you’ve got an inkling of the spectacular brand of absurdist imagination you’re in store for here. Official Selection: Sundance 2012 Canadian Premiere

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