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Home Discomforts

Nekromantik, Alleluia, In the Basement

The year closes on a high with the UK Blu-ray premiere of legendary underground shocker Nekromantik and we had the pleasure to talk to Jörg Buttgereit about his explosive debut.

Another home entertainment highlight this month is the DVD release of festival hit Alleluia and we talked to director Fabrice du Welz about his take on the ‘Lonely Hearts Killers’ story. Plus noir classic The Killers and Fritz Lang's thrilling spy adventure Spione are out on Blu-ray/DVD, and we have a comic strip review of House of Wax 3D.

Throughout December, the BFI’s Days of Fear and Wonder season continues, including a programme on‘The Created Woman’. As part of our ‘Sin and Punishment’ theme, we review Ulrich Seidl’s In the Basement. And as a festive treats we have a feature on ‘Sex, Horror and Custard Pies’ while, in Reel Sounds, we look at the soundtrack for 1984’s controversial slasher movie Silent Night, Deadly Night.

Looking back at the last 12 months, it’s clear that 2014 has been a vintage year for film. Ari Folman’s The Congress was an absolute standout, only rivalled by Lars von Trier’s magnum opus Nymphomaniac. Moebius was maybe Kim Ki-duk’s most brilliantly provocative offering yet while The Raid 2 delivered another dose of pure action. We also loved The Strange Colour of Your Body’s Tears and subtly creepy debut The Babadook.

Arrow’s Walerian Borowczyk box-set was by far the most impressive home entertainment release, while neglected Australian classic Wake in Fright, surreal Slovak fable Birds, Orphans and Fools, outlandish ero-guro yakuza ghost story Blind Woman’s Curse, Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s mini TV series Penance and the Alain Robbe-Grillet box-set also impressed. Festival highlights included the Elio Petri retrospective at KVIFF and the EEFF screening of psychedelic Japanese animé Belladonna of Sadness.

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The End: An Electric Sheep Anthology

The End: An Electric Sheep Anthology (Strange Attractor Press) brings together Bill Morrison's chemical ghosts, 50s bad girls, apocalyptic evangelical cinema, Spanish zombies, Japanese nihilists and David Lynch's soundtracks of decay. 'Superb - a masterly accomplishment. Beautifully produced - and its content and vision could not be more accurate and timely.' - Peter Whitehead. Read the reviews.

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Sin and Punishment

Delve into the sphere of dark transgressions and darker castigations in our current theme, which includes reviews of Walerian Borowczyk’s lush historical drama The Story of Sin, Lars von Trier’s saga of lust and life, Nymphomaniac, and Tetsuya Nakashima’s Confessions, along with an interview with Roee Rosen on sado-masochism as political exorcism, and a feature on 'A Catholic Childhood of Unwatchable Terror'.

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The Polish New Wave?

Alex Fitch talks to Polish master Andrzej Żuławski about the struggle in getting his esoteric SF epic On the Silver Globe released and making his horror films The Third Part of the Night (1971) and Possession (1981) under a communist regime. On the Silver Globe screens as part of the BFI’s Days of Fear and Wonder season on 15 and 21 December 2014 at BFI Southbank. For more info and to buy tickets, visit the BFI website.

School of Shock: Pain and Pleasure in the Classroom Safety Film

School of Shock: Pain and Pleasure in the Classroom Safety Film

From January to June 2015, the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies present their first London programme of monthly film classes at the Horse Hospital. On 8 January, Canadian author Kier-La Janisse makes a rare appearance in London to give the inaugural lecture on the impact of classroom safety films. For more information about the event, read our preview.

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