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Showing posts from August, 2009

The Knackery

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2009
Dir. George Clarke

Six contestants.
One million quid.
And a shitload of zombies.

A group of contestants prepare to fight to the death on extreme reality TV show The Knackery. With a reward of £1 million for the last player left standing, the stakes are high. They are raised even higher when a horde of flesh hungry, genetically modified zombies are unleashed to liven things up a bit…

Building on the reputation they cultivated for themselves with Battle of the Bone, Yellow Fever Productions have returned to the stripped back, no frills and no holds barred approach to filmmaking that made their debut feature so appealing.
Shot in five weeks on a budget of roughly £100, the first cut of The Knackery premiered at the Fellow Fever Independent Film Festival in Belfast last weekend.

A ‘knacker’ is one who slaughters worn-out livestock and sells their flesh, bones and hides. The Knackery is a gruesome reality TV show in which contestants must battle it out to the death in the name of e…

Shadowland

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2009
Dir. Wyatt Weed

Construction workers unearth an ancient stone cross and what appears to be a wooden stake whilst renovating a church. Removing the stake from the ground they inadvertently revive Laura (Caitlin McIntosh), an amnesiac vampire who crawls out of the earth and sets off across the city trying to remember who she is and what happened to her. As she desperately tries to piece together her tragic past, she is pursued by the mysterious Julian Hess (Jason Contini) who is aware of her true nature and hell-bent on sending her back to the grave…

Shot on a miniscule budget over the course of a matter of weeks, Shadowland marks the feature length debut of writer/director Wyatt Weed and was recently screened at Belfast’s first Yellow Fever Independent Film Festival where it received an award for Best Director. The film unfolds as the epic tale of a woman who has suffered a terrible trauma and seeks to uncover her past to piece together her life. The fact that she is actually a l…

Isle of the Damned

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2008
Dir. Mark Colegrove

Banned in 492 Countries!

Private Investigator Jack Steele (Larry Gamber) is hired by a mysterious treasure hunter to help him locate the lost treasure of Marco Polo. Steele’s quest brings him to a strange island off the coast of Argentina rumoured to be populated by a lost tribe of cannibals. As Steele and his small group of treasure hunters explore the island, they realise that the rumours are true and they must utilise all their resources to stay alive and make it off the island in one piece… But who is the bizarre recluse, Alexis Kinkaid (Keith Tveit Langsdorf)? And why do everyone’s lips move out of sync with what they’re saying!??

Screened as part of Belfast’s first Yellow Fever Independent Film Festival – and winner of Best International Film - Isle of the Damned is a deliberate and shameless throwback to 80s era Italian Cannibal movies such as Cannibal Holocaust, Cannibal Ferox and Deep River Savages – with added satire and irascible self-awareness thro…

The Dead Outside

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2008
Dir. Kerry Anne Mullaney

A mysterious neurological pandemic has ravaged Britain. Seeking refuge in a solitary farmhouse in deepest, darkest Scotland, Daniel (Alton Milne) a young man reeling from the death of his family, meets April (Sandra Louise Douglas), a secretive young woman who has been living in isolation for some time. The two eventually forge a tenuous relationship until the arrival of a stranger throws them into turmoil. As well as dealing with serious trust issues, the three survivors must also contend with the infected population besieging the farmhouse on an increasingly frequent basis…

The Dead Outside, a stark post-apocalyptic psychological horror film, was screened in Belfast recently as part of the Yellow Fever Independent Film Festival. Intelligent and thoughtful, at times it resembles a sort of pared down, thinking man’s 28 Days Later. Filmed with a miniscule budget and fully utilising what is essentially one location, the film plays out as a claustrophobic tw…

Award Winners of YFIFF 2009

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BEST DIRECTOR
Wyatt Weed for Shadowland

BEST FILM
Situations Vacant

BEST SHORT FILM
Somebody To Love

BEST INTERNATIONAL
Isle Of The Damned

BEST ACTOR
Diarmuid Noyes from Situations Vacant

BEST ACTRESS
Lynette Callaghan from 8.5 Hours

BEST LOCAL FILM
Death In D-Minor

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
One Last Love Song

AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARD
Bodyguard A New Beginning


Belfast’s First Annual Yellow Fever Independent Film Festival

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The first annual Yellow Fever Independent Film Festival kicked off this weekend at the Stormont Hotel in Belfast. Despite its brief duration of a mere two days (22nd-23rd) the festival managed to cram in an impressive array of film screenings, workshops, Q&A sessions with filmmakers and a whole host of other exclusive events that had film fans positively foaming at the mouth.
Whilst numbers were quite modest, they certainly weren’t bad for a local independent festival’s debut - the first of its kind in Northern Ireland – particularly when one considers the shoestring budget with which it was put together, the fact that only five months of preparation was available and the unfortunate and rather notable lack of support from local big-hitters such as NI Screen, who could easily have lent some support, financial or otherwise. Those in attendance were nonetheless treated to a memorable event and will hopefully spread the word to ensure next year’s event will be bigger and even better……

The Fall of the House of Usher

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1960
Dir. Roger Corman

When she returns to her family home after their engagement, Madeline Usher is visited by her fiancée Philip Winthorpe, who wants her to return to Boston with him. Her brother, the severely depressed Roderick opposes this suggestion with every inch of his brittle body. Philip discovers that the Usher lineage has been afflicted by an all consuming malady and that the siblings, the last of the Ushers, believe they are cursed to descend into insanity like their ancestors did before them. A series of morbid incidents unfold over the coming days as events seem set to reach a horrific climax bringing an end to the Usher bloodline, once and for all…

It suddenly occured to me, as such things usually do, that it’s been several months since I last watched anything featuring Vincent Price. Disgraceful. So, after I severely reprimanded myself, I poured a glass of Russell’s Cellar’s finest cheap red and settled down to watch Roger Corman’s first Poe adaptation, The Fall of t…

The Devil Bat

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1940
Dir. Jean Yarbrough

Dr Paul Carruthers (Bela Lugosi) devises a plan to extract revenge on his employers, the owners of a cosmetics company, who he believes have exploited him and become rich as the result of a product he created. Concocting a new aftershave (!), he offers it to the sons of his employers and then releases an electrically enlarged bat, trained to hone in on the distinct aftershave (!!), and slaughter its wearer. The series of mysterious deaths sparks the interest of roving reporter Johnny Layton (David O’Brien) and his loyal sidekick and photographer, One-Shot McGuire. The two set out to investigate the murders and put a stop to the diabolical mastermind orchestrating them, before they too become victims of the ‘death-diving’ giant bat.

The Devil Bat was produced by PRC (Producers Releasing Corporation), one of the more modest production studios of Hollywood’s ‘Poverty Row.’ PRC produced mainly low budget B-movies, particularly horror films, westerns and melodramas…

First Annual Yellow Fever Independent Film Festival

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Yellow Fever Productions is an independent production company based in Belfast. In 2008 they produced the award winning Battle of the Bone – a zombie flick set in Belfast on the Twelfth of July featuring two rival communities forced to put aside their differences and come together to deal with a marauding horde of the living dead.
Written and directed by Yellow Fever founder George Clarke, Battle of the Bone was screened at The Freakshow Horror Film Festival in Florida, October 2008. Amongst those on the panel of judges was none other than George Romero, who heaped praise on the film. Battle went on to scoop the Audience Choice Award at this festival.

Not content to produce award winning films, Yellow Fever have organised their own independent film festival right here in Belfast. The event kicks off on 22 August and is sure to provide audiences with much to salivate over.

In a recent interview with Culture Northern Ireland, George Clarke revealed that he was inspired to set up his …

Queen of Blood

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1966
Dir. Curtis Harrington

1990. Scientists on Earth receive a distress call from an alien ship that has crash landed on Mars. A small rescue team made up of scientists and astronauts are dispatched to rescue the alien crew. Only one survivor is found, a strangely beautiful female with lurid green skin. Back on board their own ship, the scientists discover that their guest has an insatiable appetite for blood and it isn’t long before she begins to pick off the crew, one by one…

In the 60s Roger Corman’s production company AIP bought the rights to quite a few Russian sci-fi films and wrote new stories around the various special effects sequences; reusing the expensive footage in new low budget films. Queen of Blood is one such film and reuses footage from Russian sci-fi epics Niebo Zowiet and Meshte Nastreshu. These scenes provide a number of the film’s highlights, as much of Harrington’s footage, particularly in the early scenes, with their kitschy ideas about how the future (1990) …

Behind the Couch is a ‘Great Read!’

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Congratulations to Mykal over at Radiation Cinema! whose blog was recently presented with a Great Read Award from I Like Horror Movies. Mykal mentioned a few other blogs that he reads and loves, one of which was Behind the Couch. His kind words are much appreciated.

It’s great to see Radiation Cinema receive some well deserved recognition for all Mykal's undeniable enthusiasm and expertise. I plan to crack open a bottle of something red and drink to his good health.

Cheers.