Fantastic Fest 2021: Final Wave of Titles Announced

Austin’s premiere genre film festival, Fantastic Fest, is gearing up to kick off September 23rd and the final wave of titles has been announced. As usual there are a slew of films here that immediately got added to my watch list so take a look below and for more information head over to fantasticfest.com.

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AELITA: QUEEN OF MARS

Russia, 1924

World Premiere of Score by Chris Bullock, 113 min

Director – Yakov Protazanov

A silent science fiction film directed by Soviet filmmaker Yakov Protazanov with new score by Chris Bullock, a saxophonist, multi-instrumentalist, and as a longtime member and composer for Snarky Puppy, he has received four Grammy awards.

BABY ASSASSINS

Japan, 2021

International Premiere, 95 min

Director – Hugo Sakamoto

Two teenage assassins are just trying to get by when a run-in with the Yakuza throws a wrench in their plans. Bummer!

A BANQUET

United Kingdom, 2021

US Premiere, 97 min

Director – Ruth Paxton

Betsey, the eldest daughter of a widowed mother, suddenly finds herself unable to eat. Betsey believes this to be a spiritual blessing rather than an ailment — a belief that threatens the fabric of her family.

BELLE

Japan, 2021

Texas Premiere, 122 min

Director – Mamoru Hosoda

Suzu is a shy girl from a small town who moonlights as a pop singer in a digital universe known as “U.” When a mysterious dragon crashes one of her performances, Suzu is driven to track down its user in the physical world.

BLACK FRIDAY

USA, 2021

World Premiere, 84 min

Director – Casey Tebo

A ragtag group of toy store employees get more than they bargained for when Black Friday shoppers mutate into violent monsters.

THE BLACK PHONE

USA, 2021

World Premiere, 102 min

Director – Scott Derrickson

After being abducted by a child killer and locked in a soundproof basement, a 13-year-old boy starts receiving calls on a disconnected phone from the killer’s previous victims.

BLOODY ORANGES

France, 2021

North American Premiere, 102 min

Director – Jean-Christophe Meurisse

A seemingly benign look into the daily lives of people living in modern-day France goes completely haywire in this shocking black comedy.

COP SECRET

Iceland, 2021

North American Premiere, 98 min

Director – Hannes Thór Halldórsson

Bussi is the best and most reckless cop in the Reykjavik police force. When, after thwarting a bank heist, he’s paired up with Hördur, the best and sexiest cop in Gardabaer, sparks start to fly. Professionally and personally.

DEALER

Belgium, 2021

World Premiere, 104 min

Director – Jeroen Perceval

Johnny is a street-smart kid in Antwerp who moves drugs to survive. When he establishes a friendship with one of his clients — an actor worried about remaining relevant — both are hoping for a chance at a new life.

THE DEER KING

Japan, 2021

US Premiere, 114 min

Directors – Masashi Ando & Masayuki Miyaji

In the Kingdom of Aquafa which is under the dominion of Zol, enslaved warrior Van may hold the cure to a disease known as the Black Wolf Fever. When he escapes the mines, a manhunt begins.

DEVIL STORY

France, 1986

World Premiere of 4K Restoration, 78 min

Director – Bernard Launois

Mummies! Nazi mutants! Stupid goddamn ghost horses! And oh no… look out for that pirate ship! DEVIL STORY is a caustic anti-human geyser of sanity-proof mayhem, totally unique, almost totally unseen, and beamed in straight from the armpit of the 80s French trash-horror cuckooverse.

THE EXECUTION

Russia, 2021

North American Premiere, 130 min

Director – Lado Kvataniya

Issa Valentinovich is celebrating his promotion to police chief when a phone call reveals that the serial killer case that made his career may not be closed.

EYES OF FIRE

USA, 1983

World Premiere of 4K Restoration, 86 min

Director – Avery Crounse

The seminal American folk horror film, unavailable on home video for decades, now debuts in a new 4K restoration from Severin Films, overseen by director Avery Crounse.

FREAKS OUT

Italy, Belgium, 2021

International Premiere, 140 min

Director – Gabriele Mainetti

During WWII in Italy, after circus director Israel disappears, four performers gifted with special powers go looking for him and unknowingly walk into a trap set by an SS Officer who is obsessed with finding them.

GLASSHOUSE

South Africa, 2021

US Premiere, 94 min

Director – Kelsey Egan

In a dangerous dystopia, a matriarch struggles to protect her children and shield them from the harsh truths of the world.

HOMEBOUND

United Kingdom, 2021

World Premiere, 75 min

Director – Sebastian Godwin

A trip to the countryside turns out to be far from idyllic for a father and his new fiancée when his kids decide the house is a little too crowded…

HOSTAGE: MISSING CELEBRITY

South Korea, 2021

North American Premiere, 94 min

Director – Gam-sung PIL

Hwang Jung-min’s action film credentials are put to the test in HOSTAGE: MISSING CELEBRITY, a no-holds-barred thriller in which the Korean star plays himself.

THE INNOCENTS

Norway, 2021

US Premiere, 117 min

Director – Eskil Vogt

A group of children discover that they have psychic powers that defy explanation. Will they use them for good… or evil?

LUZIFER

Austria, 2021

North American Premiere, 103 min

Director – Peter Brunner

Johannes, a man with the mind of a child, lives secluded in the Austrian Alps with his God-fearing mother. When a developer starts buying out the land in order to build a cable car, their world is turned upside down with tragic consequences.

MASKING THRESHOLD

Austria, 2021

World Premiere, 90 min

Director – Johannes Grenzfurthner

An IT technician locks himself in his apartment and sets up a homemade lab in order to better understand and cure his tinnitus. His experiment will ultimately lead to tragedy.

MLUNGU WAM

South Africa, 2021

US Premiere, 92 min

Director – Jenna Cato Bass

The aftershocks of apartheid reverberate through a family as a daughter tries to free her mother from the grip of her mysterious employer.

NR. 10

Netherlands, Belgium, 2021

World Premiere, 103 min

Director – Alex van Warmerdam

A stranger whispers the word “kamaihí” into stage actor Günter’s ear and disappears. Günter was found abandoned in a forest as a child and never wondered about his birth parents… until now. Will his quest to unravel the mystery of his past provide peace or further plunge him into chaos?

SALOUM

Senegal, 2021

US Premiere, 80 min

Director – Jean-Luc Herbulot

A trio of mercenaries find themselves navigating a mysterious region of Senegal in Jean-Luc Herbulot’s cool and kinetic genre-shifting thriller.

SAMUEL’S TRAVELS

Latvia, 2021

World Premiere, 85 min

Director – Aik Karapetian

Samuel travels to Eastern Europe to look for the father he’s never met. When he accidentally hits a piglet with his car, he ends up enslaved at the owner’s farm.

SILENT NIGHT

United Kingdom, 2021

US Premiere, 90 min

Director – Camille Griffin

Family and friends come together to celebrate Christmas. The gathering quickly escalates into arguments and the rehashing of old issues, but there may be a very simple reason for the rapidly rising implosion.

SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE

South Africa, 2021

World Premiere, 86 min

Director – Danishka Esterhazy

From the brilliant mind of Fantastic Fest alum Danishka Esterhazy (LEVEL 16) comes a surprising, delightful, and bloody reimagining of ‘80s slasher classic SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE.

SOME LIKE IT RARE

France, 2021

North American Premiere, 87 min

Director – Fabrice Eboué

Vincent’s butcher shop is not doing well. After he intentionally runs over a vegan activist who has vandalized his store, he uses his skills to dispose of the body… to the delight of his clueless customers.

SWEETIE, YOU WON’T BELIEVE IT

Kazakhstan, 2020

Texas Premiere, 85 min

Director – Yernar Nurgaliev

What begins as a fishing trip with the boys quickly spirals out of control when they witness a mob hit in the forest, and that’s just the beginning of this insane, violent, hilarious misadventure from Kazakhstan.

THE TAKING

USA, 2021

World Premiere, 76 min

Director – Alexandre O. Philippe

In his sublime new documentary, Alexandre O. Philippe analyzes the myth of Monument Valley, its symbolism in westerns (including John Ford’s), and its significance during the conquest of the West and in American history.

THERE’S SOMEONE INSIDE YOUR HOUSE

USA, 2021

World Premiere, 96 min

Director – Patrick Brice

Makani Young and the graduating class at Osborne High are being targeted by a masked killer intent on exposing their darkest secrets to the world.

TILL WE MEET AGAIN

Taiwan, 2021

North American Premiere, 128 min

Director – Giddens KO

After being struck by lightning, Alan wakes to find himself in a bureaucratic underworld. Facing the prospect of being reincarnated as a snail, he opts instead to train as a love god.

THE TIMEKEEPERS OF ETERNITY

Greece, 2021

World Premiere, 64 min

Director – Aristotelis Maragkos

In this mesmerizing experimental film, a Stephen King television movie is compressed and transformed through hypnotic black and white collage animation that meticulously reconstructs and reshapes its supernatural drama to an eerie and profound effect.

THE UNITED STATES OF INSANITY

USA, 2021

World Premiere, 99 min

Directors – Tom Putnam & Brenna Sanchez

Get to know the men behind the makeup in this illuminating doc about the Insane Clown Posse as they fight for their fans’ right to enjoy their music, free from government harassment.

V/H/S/94

USA, Indonesia, 2021

World Premiere, 100 min

Directors – Chloe Okuno, Simon Barrett, Timo Tjahjanto, Ryan Prows & Jennifer Reeder

Chloe Okuno, Jennifer Reeder, and Ryan Prows join franchise alumni Simon Barrett and Timo Tjahjanto in this fourth installment of the blood-soaked found footage horror omnibus series.

WHO KILLED THE KLF?

United Kingdom, 2021

World Premiere, 88 min

Director – Chris Atkins

They came to spread chaos and to make you dance. When the dancing stopped, the chaos was all that remained. One way or another, WHO KILLED THE KLF? is gonna rock you.

WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR

USA, 2021

US In-Theater Premiere, 192 min

Director – Kier-La K. Janisse Dracula III

The world’s most passionate and knowledgeable genre film expert, Kier-La Janisse, takes you on a global tour of folk horror that will simultaneously rock your world and will change your life forever.

ZALAVA

Iran, 2021

US Premiere, 93 min

Director – Arsalan Amiri

Investigating reports of demonic possessions in a remote village, a skeptical military officer finds his beliefs tested by an enigmatic exorcist.