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Biggest Horror and Sci-Fi Surprises Premiering at Fantasia Film Fest 2023 – TheFantasyTimes

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By Jitin Gambhir

Biggest Horror and Sci-Fi Surprises Premiering at Fantasia Film Fest 2023



Fantasy Film Fest, also known as Fantasia International Film Festival, has been held in Montreal since 1996. What sets Fantasia apart is its dedication to showcasing B-rated and low-budget films that often don’t make the cut at other prestigious film festivals, such as the Tribeca and Cannes Film Festivals. While the festival covers many genres, it puts a special focus on horror and sci-fi, often featuring some of the best films in these genres.

This year’s Fantasia Film Fest promises to be just as exciting, with a lineup that includes bone-chilling thrillers, mind-bending sci-fi, and even a touch of erotic horror. The festival’s second wave promises even more excitement than the first, featuring films with intriguing plots and unforgettable characters.

One of the most highly anticipated films of this year’s festival is Red Rooms, directed by Quebec filmmaker Pascal Plante. The film, which will make its North American premiere at Fantasia, is a tense and stylish horror-thriller that blends elements of Silence of the Lambs and Perfect Blue. Red Rooms follows the story of Kelly-Anne, who becomes obsessed with the high-profile case of serial killer Ludovic Chevalier. As reality blurs with her morbid fantasies, she goes down a dark path to seek the final piece of the puzzle.

Another exciting film making its international premiere at Fantasia is Sympathy for the Devil. Directed by Yuval Adler and starring Nicolas Cage, the film is a creepy, thrilling ride that follows the story of The Passenger and The Driver, two distinct individuals whose lives intersect in unexpected ways. With a game of cat and mouse that keeps you on the edge of your seat, Sympathy for the Devil is sure to be a hit with audiences.

Talk to Me is another film that promises to deliver plenty of scares. The film centers around a group of friends who discover an embalmed hand that grants them the ability to conjure spirits. While they intend to play a prank on each other, one of them goes too far and unleashes terrifying spirits outside. Talk to Me is sure to take viewers on a rollercoaster of emotions with plenty of jump scares.

Stay Online is a gripping Ukrainian screen life thriller that follows the story of a volunteer who uses a donated laptop to help a young boy find his parents. However, her good intentions put her in a dangerous situation that could endanger the lives of those she cares about. The Becomers, directed by Zach Clark, is a one-of-a-kind sci-fi film that tells the story of two extraterrestrial beings who body-swap after landing on Earth and struggle to find their way back to each other. With a mix of dark comedy and a love story, The Becomers promises to be a unique addition to this year’s festival.

Vincent Must Die, directed by Stephan Castang, delivers an adrenaline-filled drama that follows the story of Vincent, who is attacked by strangers and forced to flee for his life. Suitable Flesh, directed by Joe Lynch, is an erotic horror film that explores the dangerous obsession of a psychiatrist with one of her clients.

Finally, Late Night with the Devil, written and directed by the Cairnes brothers, is a thrilling horror film that tells the story of a live television broadcast gone wrong, unleashing evil into the homes of everyone watching it. And Molli and Max in the Future, directed by Michael Lukk Litwak, is a sci-fi romance that follows the story of Molli and Max, whose orbits frequently collide over the period of 12 years, four planets, three dimensions, and one space cult.

With a lineup this exciting, Fantasia Film Fest promises to be a must-see event for film lovers everywhere.

Fantasy Film Festalso known as Fantasia International Film Festival, has been held in Montreal since 1996. The best thing about Fantasia is that it places some focus on B-rated and low-budget films that would not be able to showcase their work at other prestigious film festivals, such as the Tribeca Film Festival and the Cannes Film Festival. Furthermore, Fantasia is known for focusing on many genres, yet it highlights horror and sci-fi each year, usually showcasing the very best films in the genre.

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We have much to look forward to this year at Fantasia Film Fest, whether it’s a soon-to-be-underappreciated horror masterpiece or a low-budget but well-crafted sci-fi feature. So, without further ado, let’s have a look at what this year’s second wave of Fantasia Films has in store for audiences following the first wave, which featured a number of intriguing films ranging from the speculative sci-fi film Aporia to a bone-chilling thriller set in the 1970s.

Red Rooms

Red Rooms movie 2023
Sphere Films

Red Rooms will be presented as the coveted ‘opening film’ at Fantasia Film Fest, where it’s making its North American premiere. Quebec filmmaker Pascal Plante (of the masterpiece Nadia, Butterfly and the film Fake Tattoos) helmed this tense, stylish horror-thriller which feels like a blend of Silence of the Lambs and Perfect Blue.

Related: The 30 Best Horror Movies of All Time, Ranked

As the synopsis states: The high-profile case of serial killer Ludovic Chevalier (Maxwell McCabe-Lokos of Stanleyville) has just gone to trial, and Kelly-Anne (Juliette Gariépy of Boost) is obsessed. When reality blurs with her morbid fantasies, she goes down a dark path to seek the final piece of the case’s puzzle.

Sympathy for the Devil

Nicolas Cage in Sympathy for the Devil
RLJE Films

Sympathy for the Devil is a new film directed by Yuval Adler (The Secrets We Keep) and starring Nicolas Cage (Ghost Rider). The film, which looks eerie with a tinge of thrill, follows two distinct individuals: The Passenger, played by Nicolas Cage, and The Driver, portrayed by Joel Kinnaman.

The former holds the latter at gunpoint, who seems perfectly willing to pull the trigger at any time and for no apparent reason. The Driver is forced to play a game of cat and mouse on the most important night of his life, and escaping alive appears to be a far-fetched outcome. Sympathy for the Devil will be released in theaters on July 28, following its international premiere at this year’s Fantasia Film Festival.

Talk to Me

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
A24

We’ve all played spirit games as kids, creating an unsettling atmosphere in our backyards or inhabiting an empty house in the woods. Talk to Me is an upcoming film that explores a similar concept as a group of friends learns a secret of conjuring spirits after discovering an embalmed hand.

Although they intend to play a prank on each other, one of them goes too far and unleashes the terrifying spirits outside. The film, which will have its Canadian premiere at Fantasia Film Fest, is sure to take viewers on an emotional rollercoaster with plenty of jump scares.

Stay Online

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
XYZ Films

Eva Strelniko, who previously directed miniseries such as A Long Way to Happiness, Lifelineand The Companionwill make her feature film debut with Stay Online. The movie follows a volunteer from Kyiv who uses a donated laptop and comes into contact with a young boy to whom it belongs.

When she learns that he is desperate to find his parents, she chooses to help him, putting her in a dangerous situation that could endanger the lives of those she cares about. This gripping Ukrainian screen life thriller will have you on the edge of your seat when it opens at Fantasia Film Fest.

The Becomers

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
Yellow Veil Pictures

The Becomers is a one-of-a-kind addition to this year’s film premieres due to its out-of-the-ordinary sci-fi theme. The film is directed by Zach Clark, who made the masterpiece White Reindeer, and who hasn’t directed a feature film since 2016’s Little Sisterwhich screened at Fantasia. The Becomers will tell the story of two extraterrestrial beings who body-swap after landing on Earth and struggle to find their way back to each other. It seems to be a dark comedy, with a love story between these two aliens serving as the overarching theme.

Related: 12 Groundbreaking LGBTQ+ Movies of the 21st Century

Vincent Must Die

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
ARTE/Arte France Cinema

Vincent Must Die is a concept that emerges when you use the “Nobody Likes Me” cheat code in the Vice City game. In the film, Vincent (Karim Leklou) is attacked by a bunch of strangers who have every intention of killing him.

With no idea what’s going on and things spiraling out of control, he’s forced to flee for his life, looking for a place where people won’t kill him on sight. This Stephan Castang’s film will deliver an adrenaline-filled drama for movie buffs and newbies alike.

Suitable Flesh

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
Eyevox Entertainment

Perhaps the one thing missing from this year’s Fantasia Film Fest is an erotic horror movie that will frighten and delight the audience at the same time. The film, directed by Joe Lynch (The Creepshow), follows the story of a psychiatrist named Elizabeth Derby (Heather Graham) who becomes obsessed with one of her new clients who possess multiple personalities, putting herself in a love and life-threatening predicament. Suitable Flesh had its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival and will be released in theaters on June 11, 2023.

Late Night with the Devil

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
Kinetic Media

Late Night with the Devil is a new film written and directed by the Cairnes brothers, who are best known for their works Scare Campaign and 100 Bloody Acres. It stars The Suicide Squad‘s Polka-Dot Man, David Dastmalchian.

Stephen King, the author of The Shining and the most recent adaptation, The Boogeymaneven described the picture as “absolutely brilliant” when it was released on March 10. The story is set in 1977 when a live television broadcast goes horribly wrong, unleashing evil into the homes of everyone watching it.

Molli and Max in the Future

Fantasy Film Festival 2023
Deverge

Molli and Max in the Future previously won Best Feature at the Fantaspo International Film Festival, where it made its Canadian premiere. The film, written and directed by Michael Lukk Litwak (Invisible), depicts a sci-fi romance between a woman named Molli and a man named Max whose orbits frequently collide over the period of 12 years, four planets, three dimensions, and one space cult.

Several critics who saw the film at its premiere were thrilled by its visual appeal and story and, more importantly, labeled it “the perfect date night movie,” as it brought a wildly endearing romantic comedy story to the big screen.

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