MOTELX 2019: Portuguese Genre Fest Descends Into Art Hell, International Short Films Announced

Editor, News; Toronto, Canada (@Mack_SAnarchy)
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MOTELX 2019: Portuguese Genre Fest Descends Into Art Hell, International Short Films Announced
One of the things that we really appreciate about MOTELX is that like all good destination festivals they offer excursions and outings to their guests and attendees above the usual film programming. Before the festival even begins MOTELX is offering a kick off event like no other. 
 
The weekend before the festival begins 31 guests will enter Portugal’s National Museum of Ancient Art at midnight on September 5th and explore the museum’s darker side of their collection. The event was open to a first come first served basis this morning, and is likely full up already, but hot damn, wouldn’t that be something to experience? 
 
MOTELX also announced their international short film entries. The full programme will be announced this month.
 
Portugal’s National Museum of Ancient Art opens its doors at midnight for the first time to host MOTELX’s kick-off event
 
At midnight and with a descent into art hell: this is how it will all start at the 13th edition of the Lisbon International Horror Film Festival. Before taking Cinema São Jorge by storm from 10 to 15 September, MOTELX kicks off in Warm-Up mode on 5 September with an unprecedented midnight visit to the National Museum of Ancient Art’s most terrifying artwork. MOTELX’s international short film selection has also been announced.
 
31 strangers meet at midnight behind the closed doors of a vast and silent museum. Their aim: to explore hell in art. This could be the beginning of another horror movie but it’s in fact the starting point of the 13th edition of MOTELX, which has joined forces with Portugal’s National Museum of Ancient Art (MNAA) to offer a unique experience to 31 participants on the night of 5 to 6 September.
 
What demons haunt Bosch’s Temptations of St Anthony or the Hell that an unknown Portuguese master painted in the 16th century? What are the forces behind Cranach’s Salome with the Head of St. John the Baptist? This visit will shed a new light on some of the most important works of MNAA’s collection, establishing connections with the emotional landscapes that inhabit the world of horror and fantasy. Registrations for this free, one-off guided tour are open from 9am on Friday, 2 August, and should be done via the email inscricoes@motelx.org (one per email). Participants must be over 18 and only the first 31 to reply will secure a place.
 
The partnership between MOTELX and MNAA also contemplates an activity for children: Lurking creatures, a game/tour of the Museum for 13 children aged between 6 and 12 (15 September, 11:30 am). Part of the Big Bad Wolf section, this event is one of the highlights of a fun morning for kids that MOTELX is organising on the Festival’s closing day, which includes a light workshop by Maria Brinca à Sombra and a Peddy Paper, both at Cinema São Jorge.
Registration for all activities can be done via the email inscricoes@motelx.org.
 
International shorts at MOTELX
 
After revealing on 16 July the short films selected for the Best Portuguese Horror Short Film Award, it is time to announce MOTELX’s selection of the best international shorts of 2018 and 2019. This year’s crop of films comes from countries such as Thailand, Italy, Spain, USA, France, UK, Canada and New Zealand. They will be shown before the features or at the infamous sessions “Shorts at Lunch”.
 
Amongst the most anticipated shorts are “The Haunted Swordsman”, an animation epic made with samurai puppets by visual effects master Kevin McTurk (VFX “Jurassic Park”, “Hellboy”, “Stranger Things”), and “Aquarium”, Lorenzo Puntoni’s thriller about a mass shooting at a public swimming pool – a film that has gathered acclaim in over 40 festivals around the world. Also causing a stir in the international festival circuit is T.J. Yoshizaki’s “Hot Dog”, an experimental short about an LA policewoman who has a fatal confrontation with a hot dog seller.
 
Other highlights include “The Desecrated”, from the creator of “Ghost Whisperer” (John Gray); “The Procedure 2”, the sequel to the hit short of MOTELX 2016: the surrealist sci-fi of “Your Last Day on Earth” (Marc Martínez Jordan); and the dark comedies “O.I.” (N’cee van Heerden) and “Possessions”, a mockumentary by Zeke Farrow about a man who decides to sell all his belongings, including a piece of the Berlin Wall that is cursed. The section will also present three shorts by Portuguese directors, serving up psychopath artists in “Dessert” (Martim David Gomes), gruesome rites of passage in “Nojo” (Pedro Mira) and vampires from Haiti in “Look No Further” (André Marques).
 
The daily schedule of sessions will be revealed in August, together with the Festival’s complete programme. Previously announced highlights include international guest Ari Aster, the director of “Hereditary” and “Midsommar”, and special screenings to celebrate the 40th anniversary of “Alien” and the first Friday the 13th in MOTELX’s 13-year history.
 
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