The new Nicolas Cage, the classic Peter Jackson among the highlights of the Terror-Fi Film Festival

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New Zealand’s annual celebration of science fiction, fantasy, horror and cult cinema is back.

The Terror-Fi Film Festival kicks off in Wellington tonight (Wednesday), before heading to Christchurch next week for a special season that will include the ability to watch a quartet of titles online.

Festival director James Partridge is delighted to be able to screen a dozen-song lineup, including family horror My heart can’t beat unless you say it, feast of aquatic dread The deep house, South African sci-fi thriller Tight and Thunder road The last cooler from filmmaker Jim Cummings The beta test.

The New Zealand premiere of a new creature feature Drink, starring Keri Russell, kicks off at the Roxy Cinema tonight (a day before it debuts in select theaters across the country), when there’s also a rare chance to see some Swiss action drama from 1967 on the cold war The unknown man of Shandigor, as well as the now traditional filmmaker masterclass of the festival, collection of Kiwi short films and secret screening.

Things to watch had the opportunity to preview the other six eclectic titles, all of which offer something different for fans of different genres.

New York Ninja, The Frighteners and Prisoners of the Ghostland are some of the fantastic films screened as part of this year's Terror-Fi Film Festival.

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New York Ninja, The Frighteners and Prisoners of the Ghostland are some of the fantastic films screened as part of this year’s Terror-Fi Film Festival.

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Alien on Stage details how a group of Dorset bus drivers took their stage adaptation of Sir Ridley Scott's sci-fi film to London's West End.

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Alien on Stage details how a group of Dorset bus drivers took their stage adaptation of Sir Ridley Scott’s sci-fi film to London’s West End.

Alien on stage

First-time directors Danielle Kummer and Lucy Harvey direct this wild documentary that follows a group of Dorset, England bus drivers whose amateur drama society decides to forgo their usual pantomime for a somewhat different theatrical production.

With the help of the filmmakers, the eclectic cast and crew are sort of transporting their serious – and low-budget – theatrical adaptation of Sir Ridley Scott’s flagship sci-fi film from one season to their party hall to one. night in West London. To finish.

The Frighteners lured Michael J. Fox to New Zealand.

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The Frighteners lured Michael J. Fox to New Zealand.

The scary ones

Screening to celebrate his 25th birthday, what is striking now about Sir Peter Jackson’s horror comedy is how well the effects and its tension withstood, how the port city of Canterbury (now a suburb of Christchurch ) of Lyttelton is beautiful and confusing. and confusing the final act of an otherwise entertaining roller coaster really is.

Marking the transition from the Kiwi filmmaker’s low-budget indie sensibilities to the blockbuster fantasies to come, it features the formidable twin views of Michael J. Fox in his latest big-screen lead role and Weta Digital flexing his muscles for the first. time.

Gaia might deter you from eating mushrooms for life.

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Gaia might deter you from eating mushrooms for life.

Gaia

South African director Jaco Bouwer’s tale combines ecological and bodily horror in a heady and nightmarish combination that offers a lot of thrills and images that are not easily forgotten.

Monique Rockman plays Gabi, a ranger who is rescued by two survivors after being injured by one of their traps. As she heals, she discovers the eerie secret deep in the jungle that surrounds them. A movie that might deter you from eating mushrooms for life.

John Liu is the New York Ninja.

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John Liu is the New York Ninja.

New York Ninja

Thirty-seven years after its first filming and its mid-production drop, martial arts legend John Liu’s only American film has been restored and completed with love and intelligence.

Featuring vocal talents from favorite action movies on video like Don “The Dragon” Wilson, Linnea Quigley, Michael Berryman, Ginger Lynn Allen and Cynthia Rothrock, it’s the story of a sound technician who swears to get revenge on the men who brutally murdered his pregnant wife after witnessing the kidnapping of a young woman. As he cleans up the city, he becomes a folk hero, discovers a sinister criminal network, and attracts the attention of the sinister Plutonium Killer.

Fans of urban action flicks from the early 1980s will love this new discovery which is both a loving tribute to the genre and embraces its most absurd tropes.

Heather O'Rourke became a star after playing Carol Anne Freeling in Poltergeist.

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Heather O’Rourke became a star after playing Carol Anne Freeling in Poltergeist.

Fighting spirit

Eventually spawning two sequels and a mediocre remake, this haunting scare of 1982 was the result of an unlikely partnership between Steven Spielberg and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Tobe Hooper.

The first being unable to direct its history because of its obligations towards HEY, the latter reigned over his most macabre tendencies to create a more than satisfactory masterclass to create tensions and trigger fears.

Nominated for three Oscars, without it there probably wouldn’t be The sixth sense, Conspiracy Where Insidious.

Nicolas Cage is at his best in Prisoners of the Ghostland.

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Nicolas Cage is at his best in Prisoners of the Ghostland.

Prisoners of Ghost Country

If you thought Mandy, Color out of space, Willy’s Wonderland Where Pig proposed Nicolas Cage in a maximum delirium, wait until you have a load of “crazy mash-up of western, samurai film and post-apocalyptic thriller” from Sion Sono. Our boy Nic plays a ruthless bank robber who is released from prison by a wealthy warlord eager to use the prisoner’s special skills to help find his missing adopted granddaughter.

Containing more than a hint of extreme violence and gore, the film feels like a throwback to post-apocalyptic tales of the 1970s and 1980s, with action at times as explosive as the contents of the leather suit in which Cage’s character is locked up.

  • The 2021 edition of the Terror-Fi Film Festival will be screened at Wellington’s Roxy Cinema from tonight (October 27) through Sunday (October 31). The Christchurch stage is scheduled to be screened at Alice’s from November 4-8, with four titles also available online. Organizers are still hoping to be able to offer an Auckland edition when Covid alert levels allow. For more information and session times, see terrorfifest.com


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