GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Buzzkill (2022)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Buzzkill (2022): Let me tell you, when you start your animated short off with a logo that says Canon Pictures and looks like Cannon Films, I’m going to love what comes next.

That said, it’s easy to love this movie, which is the story of Becky (Kelly McCormack, who is Jess McCready in the A League of Their Own Series) and Rick (Peter Ahern, also the director and writer), who return to her house after a date and their moment of romance is interrupted by an insect crawling out of her eyeball.

The animation is gorgeous, the story is amusing and I just loved the way that it all pays off. Buzzkill gets in more gross-out and laugh-out-loud moments in its short running time than most movies get in two hours.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Sins of a Werewolf (2020)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Sins of a Werewolf (2020): Father Donovan (Paul Kennedy) gets bit by a werewolf and must confront so many things, from the fact that his violence has brought more people back to mass, that he’s bitten a man’s penis off and that the only way to escape this curse is to lose his virginity.

Made in Ireland by director and writer David Prendeville, this also has a great performance by Lalor Roddy, who was Paddy Barrett in Grabbers. In this, he plays the older priest Father Fox, who is more concerned with the fact that Donovan is uncircumcised than him coming home naked and covered in blood.

Despite the short running time and low budget, this movie goes places where other werewolf movies fear to tread. It’s a blast and could easily be a full-length film.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Sucker (2022)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Sucker (2022): Two sisters — Sam (Sophia Capasso, East Enders) and Caitlin (Annie Knox) — end up battling one another as a leech creature begins to influence and control them both from within. Is it a metaphor for how real world events cast a wedge between families or just an opportunity to have horrifying creatures and no small amount of muck, bile and whatever fluids can be spit and puked up?

I mean, in a perfect world and in a great movie — like this short — it can be both.

Director and writer Alix Austin has done just about every job you can in film — acting, directing, producing, on the crew, second unit, casting, editing, writing and more — and if this film is any indication, we’ll soon be seeing a lot more of her talented work.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: GUTS (2021)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

GUTS (2021): Chris McInroy is the director of Bad Guy #2, Death Metal, We Summoned A Demon and the segment “One Time In The Woods” in Scare Package and if you’ve seen that, you have some idea of just how bloody and brilliant this short is going to be.

GUTS is all about Tim, who is in love with a girl in his office, wants a promotion and has to deal with all manner of bullies during his day because, well, his guts are on the outside of his body.

Do not watch if you are grossed out by guts, eating guts, drinking guts, eyeballs ala Fulci, whittling awards killing people, spraying blood, ooze, gristle, gore, more guts and fun. I almost puked at one point and I thought I had a cast iron stomach, so Mr. McInroy, you can consider that a standing ovation.

Hunt this down, find it and fall in love. Or throw up. I mean, either way, you’re living, right?

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Smile (2021)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Smile (2021): Six minutes, two characters and incredibly unsettling, Smile is a simple metaphor for depression told in an incredibly stunning way.

Anna (Konstantina Mantelos, who was in one of my favorite recent horror films, Anything for Jackson) is the only human we see in this movie — we hear Ashley Laurence (Kristy from the Hellraiser films) as the voice of her mother — and we’re with her as she struggles to smile and then deals with Moros (Tyler Williams), who in Greek mythology is the living and personification of impending doom and a demon destroys mortals fated to die.

Director and writer Joanna Tsanis has made several shorts, but this is the first of her work that I’ve seen. She also has the benefit of great cinematography by Jason Han and magical special effects makeup by Carlos Henriques.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Pretty Pickle (2022)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Pretty Pickle (2022): Samuel (Brennan Urbi) is getting closer to his girlfriend Samantha (Whitney Masters). And in between all the great sex — she’s GGG for more than even he may be ready for — he wonders what she’s all about. I mean, we all have our strange little things and part of the new relationship journey is discovering and living with those quirks. So after Samuel hacks her iPhone by getting her Netflix password, he starts looking through her private photos. Mostly, it’s photos of Larry the cat (played by a cat named Captain Pancakes, who has his own IMDB, Facebook and web pages). But then he finds something else.

Director and writer Jim Vendiola has made something strange and wonderful here. This is something I’ve never had happen to me and I thought I had truly seen it all. I guess now I have. Wow — you can still be shocked.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Blood of the Dinosaurs (2021)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Blood of the Dinosaurs (2021): Once, we went to a Mystery Spot and after we walked toward the center of the room, it kept pushing us into the walls and I was young and trying to hold my mother’s hand and it made me cry. Then, we all got on a train and it went through a forest and animatronic dinosaurs appeared and the driver told us to reach under our chairs for guns to kill the rampaging lizards and I yelled and ran up and down the length of the train begging for people to stop and that we needed to study the dinosaurs and not kill them. This was not a dream.

Another story. I was obsessed with dinosaurs and planned on studying them, combining my love of stories of dragons like the Lamprey Worm with real zoology, but then nine-year-old me learned that they were all dead and I had to face mortality at a very young age which meant I laid in bed and contemplated eternity all night and screamed and cried so much I puked. This is also a true story.

The Blood of DInosaurs has Uncle Bobbo (Vincent Stalba) and his assistant Purity (Stella Creel) explain how we got the oil in our cars that choke the planet but first, rubber dinosaurs being bombarded by fireworks and if you think the movie gets boring from here, you’re so wrong.

Can The Beverly Hillbillies become ecstatic religion? Should kids have sex education? Would the children like to learn about body horror and giallo? Is there a show within a show within an interview and which reality is real and why are none of them and all of them both the answer? Did a woman just give birth to the Antichrist on a PBS kids show?

This is all a preview of Joe Badon’s full film The Wheel of Heaven and when I read that he was influenced by the Unarius Cult, my brain climbs out of my nose and dances around before I slowly strain to open my mouth and beg for it to come back inside where it’s wet and safe.

Badon co-wrote this film’s score and screenplay with Jason Kruppa and I honestly can’t wait to see what happens next. Also: this was the Christmas episode of Uncle Bobbo so I can only imagine that this was him being toned down.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Tistlebu (2022)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Tistlebu (2022): Shot at the folk hotel Nordigard Blessom in Vågå, which is near the Jutulporten “The Troll Gate,” Tistlebu is all about a young urban couple who decides that a working vacation at the Tistlebu farm will help them better connect with nature. Well…nature really becomes connected to them.

A dark and moody folk horror film, Tistlebu could easily have been two hours longer and I would have stick with every moment. Director Simon M. Valentine, who also wrote the script with Alexander Delver, has crafted something unreal in all the very best of ways here.

In the folk tale of the Jutulen and Johannes Blessom, Johannes is told not to look back as the gate opens to the world of fantasy.He refuses to listen, turns and his neck is always crooked for the rest of his life. Perhaps the young couple in this, Sanna (Sacha Slengesol Balgobin) and Karl (Sjur Vatne Brean) should have just stayed unawares in the city, far from where the rules of reality no longer apply.

Tistlebu is a gorgeous film with images that will stick with me for some time.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Nasty (2022)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Nasty (2022): A very simple premise: “The weird girl in class invites the hottest guy in school to her fruity dinner party.”

Paige Dillon’s Nasty, however, looks incredible and if you’re someone who doesn’t like to watch people eat, it’s going to upset you to no end.

There are gross meals, bloody teeth, pears being turned into sacrificial Mr. Potato head-type beings, food going on peoples’ faces, food spit into peoples’ faces and a horrific final repast. Maybe save your meal until way after.

In her director’s statement, Dillon said, “On set, we finished shooting early and laughed all day. Everyone walked away having had one of their best student-set experiences. I am so proud of myself for cultivating an environment that was simultaneously productive and fun; everything I believe filmmaking should be.”

While the end to this feels too fast from the set-up, I definitely think this deserves more time. I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next.

GENREBLAST FILM FESTIVAL: Swole Ghost (2022)

The GenreBlast Film Festival is entering its sixth year of genre film goodness. A one-of-a-kind film experience created for both filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate genre filmmaking in an approachable environment, it has been described by Movie Maker Magazine as a “summer camp for filmmakers.”

Over the next few days, I’ll be reviewing several movies from this fest, based in the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Winchester, Virginia. This year, there are 14 feature films and 87 short films from all over the world. Weekend passes are only $65 and you can get them right here.

Swole Ghost (2022): This movie answers a very important question, one that’s been plaguing us all for years: how come the ghost in my house doesn’t give me any message, any inkling of how I can escape this mortal level of reality? Maybe your ghost is weak. Maybe your ghost needs trained. Maybe your ghost needs a montage.

Swole Ghost is seven minutes of your life that could be incredibly valuable if only to know that ghosts can also be the scorpions in the scorpion and the frog scenario. Be careful when you mix the fitness industry and the spirit world.

Directed, written and produced by Tim Troemner, this plays like a quick sketch but that’s fine — just the image of someone spotting a ghost on the weight bench is enough, all this has to live up to, and it goes much further.