Thursday, October 06, 2016

Sean Kelly

TADFF16: Breaking Down the Final Films

We are only a week away from the start of the 2016 Toronto After Dark Film Festival. This past weekend, the final batch of films were announced, along with the official schedule. Like I did for the first ten, I'm going to break down the selections, highlighting the films I have already seen.

Can't Miss Films

TRAIN TO BUSAN (Korea) Special Presentation (Review)
Without a doubt, Train to Busan is the year's most solid zombie film and perfect fit for Toronto After Dark's "Zombie Appreciation Night." It initially seemed like Toronto After Dark missed out on its chance to screen Train to Busan, since it had a theatrical release in Toronto only a couple months ago. However, the festival decided to make an exception to their rule of showing only Toronto theatrical premieres to give audiences another chance to see this entertaining and record-breaking film.

Films I've Seen at Fantasia

BED OF THE DEAD (Canada) Toronto Premiere (Fantasia Review)
From the folks at Black Fawn Films comes this supernatural thriller that comes off as a combination of 1408, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Oculus. Despite an inherently ridiculous premise, this is a film that would be satisfying for Toronto After Dark audiences looking for an ultra-gory thriller. Keep an eye out for my interview with the filmmakers of Bed of the Dead, which I'll post to coincide with the Toronto After Dark screening.

The Rest

STAKE LAND 2 aka THE STAKELANDER (USA/Canada) Canadian Premiere
This is probably the most surprising selection of this year's Toronto After Dark line-up. The original Stake Land was a fan favourite, winning the TIFF Midnight Madness People's Choice Award back in 2010. Very little is known about this sequel, other than the fact that it features the return of Connor Paolo as main protagonist Martin and Nick Damici as vampire hunter Mister. If there is a possible warning sign about The Stakelander, it's the fact that it is apparently produced for SyFy with original director Jim Mickle being replaced by the duo of Dan Berk and Robert Olsen. We'll just have to wait and see how this sequel compares to the original.

BLOOD FATHER (USA/France) Toronto Premiere
Mel Gibson returns in this new acclaimed action thriller. 'Nuff said.

THE MASTER CLEANSE (USA) Toronto Premiere
I actually has this film on my Fantasia schedule, but I decided to skip the screening for one reason or another. As such, I am happy that I will get another chance to see this creature feature.

WAR ON EVERYONE (USA/UK) Canadian Premiere
This dark buddy cop comedy starring Alexander Skarsgard and Michael Pena looks like it could possibly be a hidden gem of the festival.

I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER (USA) Toronto Premiere
This is one of the films I really wanted to see at Fantasia, but it didn't screen until after I left Montreal. As such, I am quite happy to see this Christopher Lloyd-starring thriller in the Toronto After Dark line-up.

LET HER OUT (Canada) Toronto Premiere
From the director of Antisocial comes this thriller, which looks to combine multiple personality disorder with body horror. Definitely looks like it will be an interesting watch.

FROM A HOUSE ON WILLOW STREET (South Africa) North American Premiere
I'm going to say straight out that this is the film that I am most intrigued by in the entire Toronto After Dark line-up. Personally I'm sold by the fact that the film stars You're Next's Sharni Vinson, as well as the fact that the film has one very cool poster.

Well, that wraps up my breakdown of the final films of the 2016 Toronto After Dark line-up. The festival runs from October 13-21 at the Scotiabank Theatre in Toronto. The festival All-Access Passes are nearly sold out, so you have to run fast to get access to every film in the Toronto After Dark line-up. Single tickets are also now available, with many of the high profile films expected to sell out. As of this writing, you will have to rush to get tickets to see Under the Shadow (2nd screening), Train to Busan, or The Void (2nd screening). We'll see you after dark!

Sean Kelly

About Sean Kelly -

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described ├╝ber-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).