Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival Brings Terror And Joy With Seventh Edition

Contributor; Paris
Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival Brings Terror And Joy With Seventh Edition
What foul beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Strasbourg to be born?

Why, the Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival of course, which begins this Friday, Sept. 12th and runs through the 21st.

To celebrate seven years as one of France's largest genre events, event organizers Spectre Films are pulling out all stops. The legendary Tobe Hooper will serve as Jury President, presiding over an official competition stocked with some of the year's biggest gems. Festival goers will have the spooky pleasure of discovering Fabrice de Welz' Alleluia, Till Kleinert's Der Samurai and Ana Lily Amirpour's A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night with all three directors present. 

Old Scratch will finally be getting his due with the aptly titled "Sympathy For The Devil" retrospective, highlighting some of the dark prince's finest screen appearances over the years, and F.W. Murnau's brilliant Faust, one of the true pinnacles of the silent era, will be presented with live musical and foley accompaniment.

Should that prove all too intense, frayed nerves might be soothed at the Cannon Testosterone Night and at the open-air, 30th anniversary screening of Ghostbusters by the steps of Strasbourg's soaring Gothic cathedral.

Throw in a Zombie Walk, a selection of frenzied Midnight Movies and ghostly charm of one of Europe's most beautiful cities, and you have all the makings for a tremendous week of fun in Strasbourg. 

The Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival 12-21 September 

The Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival is a major platform for world fantastic cinema and is among Europe's most comprehensive genre events. Its eclectic and creative programming plus a wide choice of side events draws a highly diversified public each year. In parallel to its film competitions, the festival proposes an independent video game contest, researched revival screenings of repertory film, master classes, silent film concerts, conferences, workshop labs, and more, including exciting industry guests and the signature Great Strasbourg Zombie Walk.

As a member of the European Fantastic Film Festivals Federation, Strasbourg organises the Silver Méliès competition for France. Winners of this coveted award will compete for the Golden Méliès at the annual Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival.

There's something for everyone at this convivial event, bringing together cinephiles, geeks, tradition movie-goers and the curious of all ages for ten celebratory days of fantastic cinema in one of the most beautiful and cinephile cities in France. 

A 2014 highpoint: Grand Master of Horror Tobe Hooper, president of the feature film jury, comments his landmark career in a master class moderated by French film historian, Jean-Baptiste Thoret. 

Get your chain saws whirling because the class will be followed by a projection of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, the 1974 masterpiece that turned genre on its head. Thanks to cutting-edge 4k restoration, Massacre's compelling images and soundscape have been re-sharpened into pristine condition.

This year Strasbourg proposes 51 features, 23 shorts, 7 prizes, 8 French premiers and 2 European premiers. Here's the complete line up for 2014.

Opening and closing night 

These Final Hours - Australia, Zak Hilditch, 
Predestination - Australia, Peter and Michael Spierig, European premier

International feature film competition 

This section presents new productions of fantastic films from around the world and awards 3 prizes: the Golden Octopus for the best international film, the Silver Méliès for European film and the Audience Award. 

Nuoc: 2030 - Vietnam, Nghiem-Minh Nguyen-Vo, French premier 
Alleluia - France-Belgium, presented by director Fabrice du Welz 
The Canal - Ireland, Ivan Kavanagh 
Cannibal - Spain, Manuel Martin Cuenca, presented by cinematographer Pau Esteve Birba
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night - USA, presented by director Ana Lily Amirpour Honeymoon - USA, presented by director Leigh Janiak, French premier
Housebound - New Zealand, Gerard Johnstone, French premier 
Killers - Indonesia-Japan, Kimo Stamboel and Timo Tjahjanto 
Late Phases - USA, Adrian Garcia Bogliano, French premier 
The Pool - Netherlands, presented by director Chris Mitchell, French premier 
Starry Eyes - USA, Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer, French premier 
The Samurai - Germany, presented by director Til Kleinert 
White God - Hungary, Kornel Mundruczo 


A non-competitive section highlighting dark thrillers, darker comedies, oddities and curiosities 

A Hard Day - South Korea, Seong-hun Kim 
In Order of Disappearance - Norway, Hans Petter Moland
Wetlands - Germany, David Wnendt 
White Bird in a Blizzard - USA, Gregg Araki 

Midnight Movies

Extremes, screamers, invigorating bad taste, diversely-dosed gore from galore to homeopathic, so leave Aunt Milly behind, just in case. 

ABCs of Death 2 - USA, 26 horror directors, European premier 
Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead - Norway, Tommy Wirkola, French premier 
Discopathe - Canada, presented by director Renaud Gauthier 
Knights of Badassdom - USA, Joe Lynch 
What We Do In the Shadows - New Zealand, Taika Waititi, Jemaine Clement, French premier 
Why Don't You Play in Hell - Japan, Sion Sono 
Zombeavers - USA, Jordan Rubin, French premier 


Doc of the Dead - USA, Alexandre O. Philippe, French premier 
The GoGo Boys: The Inside Story of Cannon - Israel, Hilla Medalia 
Super 8 Madness - France, Fabrice Blin 

Special screenings 

Intrusion - France, presented by director Xavier Palud 
O Menino e o Mundo (The Boy and the World) - Brazil, Alê Abreu 

Short film competitions 

Twenty-three short films fall into three categories: international, animated, and Made in France for French productions. There's a best in the fest prize for all categories, including a Silver Méliès for the best European short and a Student Jury Prize for the international short. 


Sympathy for the Devil 

Homage to this ubiquitous personage present since cinema's pioneer days, and who is still as topical as ever. Ranging from 1934-86, our selection of nine films features the typical Satanic themes of cultism, Faustian pacts and possession, but portrayed through the very different genres of historical drama, tragicomedy, the poetic fable and pure horror. 

The Black Cat - USA, 1934, Edgar Ulmer 
The Devil and Daniel Webster - USA, 1941, William Dieterle
La Main du Diable (The Devil's Hand) - France, 1943, Maurice Tourneur 
La beauté du diable (Beauty of the Devil) - France-Italy, 1950, René Clair 
Night of the Demon - UK, 1957, Jacques Tourneur 
Rosemary's Baby - USA, 1968, Roman Polanski 
The Devils - UK, 1971, Ken Russell The Exorcist - USA, 1973, William Friedkin Angel Heart - USA, 1987, Alan Parker 

Tobe Hooper - From experimental to blockbuster

Eggshells - USA, 1969 
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre - USA, 1974, newly remastered 4k version 
Eaten Alive - USA, 1977 
Poltergeist - USA, 1982 
Lifeforce - USA, 1985 
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre 2 - USA, 1986 

Cannon Testosterone Night 

A bicep-bulging, all-nighter of 3 cherished he-man favourites, with Stallone, Van Damme and Chuck Norris 

Over the Top - USA, 1987, Menahem Golan 
Missing in Action - USA, 1984 Joseph Zito 
Bloodsport - USA, 1988, Newt Arnold 

Side events

Indie Game Contest

A competition highlighting the talent of independent video game developers worldwide, with entries from Europe, the USA, Africa and the Middle East. 

Fnac video game forum 

Experts Anthony Jauneaud, narrative designer for Ubisoft, and Mathieu Triclot, philosophy lecturer at the Belfort-Montbéliard University of Technology, discuss pertinent issues related to these huge consumers of fantasy and science fiction, video games. 

Tobe Hooper master class

Hooper, in conversation with film historian and critic Jean-Baptiste Thoret, comments his many films and reviews his career. 

Master Class - Visual effects in the cinema

Hugh Namur of Mikros Image presents an overview of visual effects, illustrated by a range of examples from films or series such as Tiresia, Don't Look Back, The Returned, 9 Month Stretch, Interior Design, The Congress, The Pack ... 3D. For high-school and university film students. 

Silent film concert

F. W. Murnau's Faust, 1926, Weimer Republic. 

Live music accompaniment by Eunice Martens, resident pianist of the Arsenal-Institute for Film and Videoart in Berlin and sound effects by Abril Padilla, Foley artist and composer. 

Ghostbusters under Gothic skies! 

Relive or discover one of cinema's most fun experiences, in the Gothic shadows of the Strasbourg cathedral - a 30th anniversary open-air screening of Ivan Reitman's half-wacky, half-subversive film that instantly became a 1984 societal phenomenon. 

Fablab demonstration

Everything you always wanted to know about 3D fabrication will be explained in this demonstration lab that explains the process and the high-tech tools it requires. 

The Fantastic Village 

Crash out! Mingle! Snack, drink and talk shop! The village is the place to be seen. Music, refreshments, exhibitor stands, the festival boutique and a daily aperitif get-together. 

The Great Strasbourg Zombie Walk

One of Europe's largest Z-walks: thousands of committed zombies take to the Strasbourg streets annually, to the tune of a live brass and percussion band. The record to beat this year - 4 000. 

Check out for times, locations, descriptions
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