Tag Archives: Sitges film festival

Sitges 2010
Tucker & Dale vs Evil Review

By Dork Shelf
November 11, 2010

Tucker & Dale vs Evil - Eli Craig

About 15 minutes into Tucker & Dale, you will think to yourself: why did no one have this brilliant idea before? Maybe if they did, it would not the work of horror comedy genius that this film is. While initially worried that I saw all the best jokes in the trailer, I was amazed at how Craig and Jurgenson kept the entire film fresh and brilliantly funny.

Tucker (Tudyk) and Dale (Labine) are a couple of stereotypical rednecks, dirty baseball caps and all. Having just purchased their ‘vacation home’ (i.e. ramshackle hut in the middle of the woods), they dream of having the good life, just fishing and relaxing. That is, until a pesky group of bored college kids with their cell phones and attitudes show up to ruin everything. That’s right, this time the hillbillies have the floor, and show up every stereotype. When one of the kids falls into the river, Tucker and Dale rescue her; however, their calls of “We’ve got your friend” are met with screams of terror. And as the others try to “save” their friend from the “killer” hillbillies, they themselves die off one by one in nasty and bizarre ways. And in the meantime, Dale becomes more and more enamored of the ‘victim’, Allison. Craig runs through like every horror film involving a group of annoying teenagers, from Blood Bath to Texas Chainsaw Massacre to Cabin Fever. And like most of us probably always believed, the teenagers kind of have it coming to them. Except now Tucker and Dale have a growing pile of bodies on their hands and an impossible story to relate to police. So they try to cover it up, i.e. bury the bodies. The script not only plays on the big clichés, but almost every line of dialogue has a hidden gem or undertone to it, and it is never over or under played by any of the actors.

Tudyk is a natural comedian, and while most of his comedy is in his turn-of-phrase, it’s good to see him given a chance to execute his physical comedic ability as well. He and Labine play off each other extremely well, as the confident one trying to buck up the shy one. All of the cast are excellent, and each plays just enough to keep the comedy while not overdoing it.

After playing at a few festivals, this film seems to have disappeared, and there is no listing of a release date for North America on IMDB. Let’s hope this changes, because I can’t imagine this film not doing well among both horror and comedy fans.

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Sitges 2010
Secuestrados Review

November 9, 2010

Shot in just under 10 very long takes, Vivas’ Secuestrados tells the story of a wealthy family who, having just moved into their new home, are held hostage and robbed by three masked men. No harm seems intended for the victims, until one of the thieves’ psychotic personality starts to show itself, and the father of the family attempts to get help. Then all hell breaks loose. Continue reading

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Sitges 2010
Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale
Review

November 5, 2010

Our North American, contemporary version of Santa Claus apparently comes from Coca-Cola; the red suit trimmers with white, the beard, the jolly laughing belly. Santa Claus or some version of him has been around for several centuries, of course, but our modern age has skewed the origins quite a lot. In this tale of the man, director and writer Helander conceives not of a jolly person who brings presents to little children, but of a demon buried deep under a mountain, a demon that eats children. And it will take a child to stop him. Continue reading

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Sitges 2010
La Casa Muda Review

November 4, 2010

La Casa Muda has become fairly well known on the fantastic festival circuit mainly for its modus operandi: it was shot in one long take. And deservedly so: this technique, which frequently incorporates first person perspective, creates one of the most terrifying atmospheres in any horror film I’ve watched. Continue reading

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Sitges 2010
Fase 7 Review

October 31, 2010

A gem of a comedy from Argentina, Fase 7 tries to find the lighter side of disease outbreak. Sounds like a contradiction, but writer and director Nicolás Goldbart focuses on the residents of a small apartment building in order to examine the (humourous) human condition during trying times. Continue reading

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Sitges 2010
Agnosia Review

October 31, 2010

Eugenio Mira’s second feature is a strange but rare and beautiful bird. A blend of espionage thriller, gothic romance, and fantasy, the title refers to a neurological disorder in which the brain cannot properly interpret visual and aural stimuli, and thereby cannot tell faces and voices apart. Continue reading

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Heartless Trailer

February 6, 2010

The trailer for Philip Ridley’s Faustian thriller Heartless has hit the web. The film stars Jim Sturgess (Across the Universe, 21) as Jamie, a young man with a heart-shaped birthmark on his face. The East London neighbourhood Jamie calls home … Continue reading

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Sitges ’09 Reviews Part Two: Doghouse, Macabre, Heartless

November 19, 2009

To see Shelagh’s first batch of  reviews from the 2009 Sitges Film Festival, including Splice, Amer, Cargo and TiMER be sure to click here. Probably the best night I had at Sitges was not at a film, but at a … Continue reading

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Sitges ’09 Reviews Part One: Splice, Amer, Cargo, TiMER

November 7, 2009

Last February when on holiday in Spain, I was fortunate enough to meet Mike Hostench, co-director of Sitges Festival Internacional de Cinema Fantàstic de Catalunya, the largest fantastic film festival of Europe and one of the largest and most important … Continue reading

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