In honour of Machete Kills & Next week’s Toronto After Dark Festival… these are my TOP 5 2013 After Dark Films. This of course refers to movies that are screening during the festival which is taking place at the Scotiabank Theatre in Toronto from October 17-25th. Each year the fest puts on a clinic in film from around the world dealing with all kinds of genre from Sci-fi to Horror… well mostly horror. If you have not a had a chance to check it out you are missing out on one of the best festivals out there. Festival runner Adam Lopez and his team pick some of the best and most interesting films going. Over the last few years of covering the fest, we’ve seen a great selection presented including films such as sci-fi survival horror The Divide, horror comedy Monster Brawl, Korean anthology Doomsday Book or last year’s festival hit, the Irish alien invasion comedy Grabbers. They program for everyone. I haven’t even hit on the body modification or gore-fest films they also program sometimes. It literally has something for everyone’s tastes. And to me, that’s the hallmark of a good festival. We may not always be into what’s there, which is fine, but there bound to be something there for you if you love genre films.
Here are the rules…
- Must screening at this year’s festival
- Are my must see films
Sadly, while many films are screened, I know you can’t see everything. With that in mind, I wanted to highlight some titles that are part of this year’s festival. Here are what I think are great examples.
Big Ass Spider! – Friday, October 18th, 7pm
I love me some giant ass monsters! Pacific Rim from earlier this year is a favourite of mine for 2013. I grew up watching Godzilla movies and one of my top sci-fi films is 1954’s THEM! As soon as I saw this in the line up, I knew I had to see it. After watching the trailer, I was right. Greg Grunberg stars as the exterminator hired to take out the BIG ASS SPIDER! in the film. If after watching it you can’t see there is some great comedy going on here having fun with the genre, you are blind. Also the film has an appearance by Ray Wise. Ray fucking Wise is the man and always makes me laugh. I can’t wait to sit down and let this unspool before my eyes.
Eega – Friday, October 18th, 9:30pm
This is one that Peter Kaplowsky was hyping on our show a couple of weeks ago even though at the time, he couldn’t mention the title as the lineup hadn’t been announced yet. He said this was one that he is championing and after checking out the trailer, I see why. This is the perfect companion film for a night with Big Ass Spider! It’s an Indian film about Nani, a man reincarnated as a fly who seeks vengeance against those who wronged him and protect the woman he loves. Yes, I just wrote that sentence. Sometimes I really love my job. This looks like it will be a mile a second, fun ride. And the effects look great throughout. Just watch the trailer to see the final shot… ugh, I’m glad I wasn’t eating while watching that.
Odd Thomas – Monday, October 21st, 7pm
The one film on my list that is destined for the widest release out of the festival entries this year. Odd Thomas stars Anton (Star Trek) Yelchin as Thomas, a kid who sees things… big nasty ugly things. Based on the Dean Koontz series of novels it looks to be the most accessible film this year. If you want to take someone who isn’t really into genre films, this one might be your best choice. But if you do see it, there looks to be enough going on that you will be happy that you did. Yelchin films can be hit or miss for me but I think this one will stand up pretty well based on the trailer. Having the Koontz pedigree helps offset the stink that is Stephen Sommers but that is mostly my issue not yours. Still, this looks to be tonnes of fun.
The Machine – Tuesday, October 22nd, 9:30pm
The trailer for this is actually a clip from the film and doesn’t really give much away. But from what we do see, I have a really strong feeling that this going to be something I can sink my teeth into. A story of two computer programmers who fall in love while building a human A.I. Fuck! I love science fiction. Eventually, the robot gets turned into a military asset so we know that will end well. Toby Stephens stars in the film as one of the programmers and it also has Dennis Lawson in it… who? Well go give your head a shake, it’s fucking Wedge Antilles! Who? I’m just not going to talk to you anymore. Go check it out!
Cheap Thrills – Friday, October 25th, 7pm
Now for the last film on my list. This is one that I have a feeling will at some point make me squirm. It’s about two guys who are out on the town when they run into a man who is willing to pay them to do crazy shit. Sounds like a pretty good way to earn some extra cash until things get out of control and they start doing things that would make most of us lose our lunch, dinner and the next day’s breakfast all at once. I can’t wait to see it but I’m also a little grossed out in my mind at some of the hinted imagery. This one doesn’t look like it’s going to be for the faint of heart.
So there it is, my list. There are so many more that I could have added but I wanted to go with what I think of as the best representatives of the group. If you are looking for something to watch at the festival, give one of these a try.
If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!
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