Prepare to be scared

Five Frightfest films to send shivers down your spine.

by Jennie Kermode

This year's Frightfest is almost upon us, and it has one of the strongest line-ups to date. Now sponsored by the Horror Channel and benefiting from the success of the new Frightfest Presents label, it will be screening its selection to sell out audiences as usual, but if you haven't managed to get a ticket you can still look forward to catching some of its choices at later Frightfest events around the country, with others coming out on VOD or DVD. These are the ones we think you can't afford to miss.

Blood Feast

Blood Feast
Blood Feast

When restaurateur and part time museum security guard Fuad falls in love with an Ancient Egyptian goddess, he commits to preparing a cannibal feast in her honour. Marcel Walz's reworking of the Herschell Gordon Lewis schlock classic gives it a very different flavour but is one of those rare remakes that's well worth watching in its own right. Big on atmosphere, it goes to very dark places, though always with a hint of tongue in cheek. This is big budget horror at its best.

See it if you like: gore, cannibalism, occult horror.

Lost Solace

Lost Solace
Lost Solace

Spence is a psychopath, an exploiter of women, a selfish driver and an all round unpleasant person. Then one day he tries a drug which unexpectedly makes him emotional. As he tries to find his balance, wracked by unfamiliar torment, he finds himself mixed up with a family on a dangerous path. Strong performances and a refreshingly different approach to mental health issues draw out horrors that are often overlooked, and the multi-layered narrative is complemented by a clever script.

See it if you like: chillers, psychological horror, real world horror.

The Creature Below

The Creature Below
The Creature Below

Testing a new diving suit in the deep ocean, Olive sees something so shocking that she can barely remember it. Then she finds an egg attached to her gear and takes it home to study. As a little eldritch horror grows in her suburban basement, former colleagues get suspicious and she begins to lose her scientific focus. This is the most assured Lovecraft homage to make it to our screens for years, so it's hard to believe that it's a first feature. It's a treat for anyone who's every wondered how to capture the unspeakable and unimaginable on film.

See it if you like: tentacles, obsession, Lovecraftian horror.

Francesca

Francesca
Francesca

Giallo is at its best when it's visionary, and this film was made in large part by one person, with help from his brother. The story of a little girl who plays with dead things is entangled with the murder of 'sinners' years later, antique coins, the Divine Comedy and a singing doll. With a pounding, histrionic score that takes hold right at the start, and luridly beautiful visuals to match, it's a gorgeous tribute to the Seventies classics and an immersive experience in its own right.

See it if you like: giallo, mystery, sensationalism.

Population Zero

Population Zero
Population Zero

Did you know that there's an area of Yellowstone National Park where you can literally get away with murder? Tracing the story of a man who might have done just that, this is a slippery tale that builds on its strong premise with one revelation after another, all the while making it easy to miss the real horror lurking in the background. Although it differs a bit from the usual Frightfest fare, it's bound to get audiences talking.

See it if you like: documentary, creepy stories, existential horror.

Share this with others on...
News

The gatekeeper Matt Tyrnauer on Where's My Roy Cohn?

Edward Lachman and New York remember Robert Frank Photographer/filmmaker passed away aged 94

The magpie Lauren Ashley Carter talks fight scenes, troubled characters, animal inspiration and Artik

A cinematic runway Anna Sui on the influence of cinema and Dennis Nothdruft on fairy tales in The World Of Anna Sui

Forming a mountain Rick Alverson on Tye Sheridan, Jeff Goldblum, Udo Kier, and Denis Lavant in The Mountain

NYFF director Kent Jones to step down "Most of all I thank the filmmakers"

More news and features

We're bringing you coverage of the San Sebastian Film Festival and Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas.



We're looking forward to the New York Film Festival, the London Film Festival, the Scottish Queer International Film Festival, Manchester's Grimmfest, the Iris Prize Festival in Cardiff and NewFest in New York.



We've recently been at the Glasgow Youth Film Festival, Frightfest in London, the Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal and Outfest Los Angeles.



Read our full for more.


Visit our festivals section.