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Published on October 23rd, 2014 | by Darren Byrne


IFI Horrorthon 2014: Darren’s Picks

“If it’s in a word, or it’s in a look, you can’t get rid of…”


I do like my horror. I like to be scared, enthralled and amused. I like teeny-bop slashers, religious thrillers, gory bloodfests and tense psychologicals. I cheer for Freddy Krueger, I want Jigsaw to return, I offer my soul to the Cenobites and I want Chucky for Christmas this year. Who can make that happen?

Is it any wonder I’m excited about this year’s Horrorthon in the Irish Film Institute?

Running from this evening to Monday, 23rd to the 27th October, with dozens of tales from all over the world, chilling special events, Q&As and surprise screenings, this is gonna be fun. A full season pass for the five days is a touch pricey at €130 (unless you have the time to dedicate to at least 13 films), but individual tickets are only €10.20. My plan is to catch five movies and I do enjoy the planning process.

IFI Horrorthon 2014

I sat down with the program and immediately picked out the opening and closing films. I put a bit more research into the other picks. Let me know what you think. Let me know if you’ll be joining me for any of them…

Thursday 23rd October

There was no way I was going to miss the opening film – The Babadook.

Amelia struggles with her six-year old son, whose unshakeable belief in monsters proves exhausting – until it suddenly seems that not every monster is imaginary…

I’ve already heard great things about this very creepy Australian horror. Look look look at the Babadook trailer:

Thursday’s also-ran is Monsters: Dark Continent. And I may still go see it. It depends on how tired I am come 11.15 tonight.

American soldiers in an unnamed Middle Eastern country find themselves trapped in the desert,having to battle both aliens and an unfriendly populace on their way back to safety.

Friday 24th October

I suspect one of the festival’s highlights will be The Light of Day, one of only two Irish films playing across the long weekend.

The Light Of Day is a mockumentary that tracks the disastrous production of horror film ‘The First Bite Is The Deepest’. With hilariously inept director Richie Martin (Aidan Lawlor) at the helm, production is derailed early on, leaving the crew desperately attempting to finish the film by any means necessary. As actors and crew begin to drop like flies, it falls to meek cinematographer Michael (Jack Hickey, pictured), to ensure the film sees the light of day.

However, my schedule won’t let me see it. Instead, I’m going old school on Friday night with a Double Bill of Hellraiser & Hellbound: Hellraiser II. I’m even bringing a friend of mine a long with me who has never seen Clive Barker’s classics. Mwahahahaha.

My also-rans for Friday are the vintage 1957 Night of the Demon and Housebound, a horror comedy from New Zealand.

Saturday 25th October

I really have far to hectic a social life. Again, I’m not around to catch my first choice on Saturday. 1982’s Basket Case will be introduced by its director and festival guest, Frank Henenlotter. This film looks more bizarre that scary. It’s one I’ll be watching at home.

For me, it’ll be another late one. I’m going to catch The House with 100 Eyes at 11.10pm.

A seemingly typical suburban couple are actually psychopaths encountering logistical difficulties while trying to make a snuff masterpiece in one of this year’s most darkly humorous offerings.

Sunday 26th October

While I’m singing my heart out at choir rehearsals on Sunday afternoon, movie-goers will be enjoying Frank Henenlotter’s That’s Sexploitation at 1pm. This informative and entertaining documentary surveys the history and development of silver screen erotica, from educational films to naturist flicks and beyond, ending before the advent of hardcore pornography.

The Short Film Showcase is also on Sunday afternoon. It pains me to miss that.

However, I will not be missing the Surprise Film. My inside man in the IFI isn’t giving anything away, but I’m hoping it’ll be Horns, Daniel Radcliffe’s new film, which is released next week.

Monday 27th October

Screen queen, Jessica Cameron introduces the closing film of the festival, the horror comedy What We Do In The Shadows. From the team behind Flight of the Conchords comes this mockumentary about house-sharing vampires in New Zealand. This very funny film will provide the perfect ending to this year’s festival. And it’s no surprise that both screenings are sold out. I booked my tickets too late.

To make up for it, I’m treating myself to the very ridiculous Frankenhooker. This 1990 horror will be introduced by director Frank Henenlotter with a Q&A afterwards. I have no idea what I would ask him!!!

Let me know if you’re going along to any of these films. Let’s meet and discuss the philosophical merits of Basket Case, the groundbreaking imagery of Frankenhooker and the deep and meaningful motifs buried in Hellraiser II.

See you at the movies!

Follow me on Twitter and . Follow the too. And check out their website for tickets to any of this year’s horrific offerings.

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About the Author

Blogger, writer, movie buff, amateur dramatist and all round nice guy. When I'm not spouting about on Culch.ie, I can be found Tweeting inanities @DarrenByrne or @Culch_ie. I am the admin behind Culch.ie and if you want to contact me for anything, drop me a mail.

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