FEARnyc is the destination for horror fans in New York as we get closer to Halloween. The film festival, put together by director John Capo, is showing over 65 horror movies through Thursday, including world premiere originals and timeless classics. FEARnyc emanates from Cinema Village, located near NYC’s Union Square. On Saturday, I arrived at 4:45 pm and took in an awesome four-film marathon that included the world premiere of Pool Party Massacre, as well as classics The Lost Boys, George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, and 1973’s The Exorcist, the latter of which included a seance.
First up at 5:00pm was the world premiere of Pool Party Massacre, written and directed by Drew Marvick. The film is a loving homage to the 80s slasher film, filled with buxom beauties and a killer who literally uses a different weapon for each victim. The vibe was Slumber Party Massacre meets April’s Fools Day, and the the ending was hilariously creative. After the screening, Marvick and the film’s cinematographer Brian Mills led a Q&A that covered everything from favorite kill, to inspirations, to where to get the sound effects for masturbation… the internet, everything is on the internet.
Next up were a trio of classics. First was Richard Donner and Joel Schumaker’s The Lost Boys, a vampire movie dripping with MTV-era glam and fun. The insanely quotable movie is loaded with 80s staples, from evil Kiefer Sutherland to the Coreys (Corey Haim and Corey Feldman). The film stars Jason Patric and Corey Haim as brothers who move to Santa Carla, California with their mom (Dianne Wiest). What no one knows is that the beachfront community is overrun with vampires… well no one except the Frog Brothers, (Feldman and Jamison Newlander). Re-watching The Lost Boys for the dozenth time, you really appreciate how ludicrously fun and quotable it is, and how much modern vampire lore was created here. The real star though is Gerard McMahon’s epic gothic rock song “Cry Little Sister.”
Next up was the original zombie film, George A. Romero‘s Night of the Living Dead. Made in the late 60s, the film broke every mold for both graphic zombie gore and cultural stereotypes, especially casting a black protagonist (Duane Jones). The film never gives the audience a chance to breath from its opening graveyard scene and infamous “they’re coming to get you Barbara.”
Finally, the night ended with what many consider the scariest movie ever made: The Exorcist. Before the screening, John Capo welcomed a psychic, Jesse Bravo, to conduct a seance and do readings with the captive audience. They handed out plastic crosses and passed around a jar of holy water. As for the film itself, there isn’t much that needs to be said that hasn’t already. Shocking, disturbing, and genuinely terrifying are some of the words. After going through some of the most uncomfortable medical procedures of the 70s, little Regan MacNeil (Linda Blair) goes through one of the most epic transformations in film history, from innocent 12-year-old girl to a demonically possessed monstrosity who requires the church’s help.
Another tremendous evening of horror in the books. In the last two nights I’ve seen seven horror movies, and slept six hours. Today will feature the NYC premieres of two Stephen King-inspired documentaries, Unearthed and Untold: The Path to Pet Sematary and Resurrecting Carrie. At 3:00pm there is the NYC premiere of Lost Creek featuring a Q&A afterwards with cast and crew. At 5:00pm, F.W. Murnau’s Faust will be screened with an orchestra accompaniment, and following that will be Hitchcock’s classic Psycho at 7:00pm and Hocus Pocus at 9:00pm.
FEARnyc, which takes place at Cinema Village on 22 East 12th Street in Manhattan, NYC, will host over 65 screenings of classic and new horror films, and will include several cast appearances, special events, and a tribute to horror icon Wes Craven. Visit FEARnyc.com for the daily schedules, which runs through next Thursday, October 27, 2016. Admission is $12 for GA, $8 for seniors, and a Festival pass is only $125.