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Friday, November 11, 2011

Grind is in tha House at the Buried Alive Film Festival

The great thing about vintage grindhouse horror movies is that their lack of budgets and big stars, when treated properly, can lend the movies a disturbing, documentary quality. Slick Hollywood productions feel more like fantasies, while the most effective grindhouse movies feel like something that actually happened. Screening Nov. 11-13 at the Plaza Theatre, the Buried Alive Film Festival of indie horror movies doesn't cater exclusively to retro-grindhouse films. Featuring five features and 30 shorts, the festival definitely gives props the trend of modern throwbacks to the cheap B-movies of 1960s and 1970s drive-ins.

One of the most intriguing entries, the horror-comedy Chillerama, pays homage to as many schlocky genres as possible. Set at a drive-in, the anthology includes: "I Was a Teenage Werebear," a spoof of Rebel Without a Cause, Grease and The Twilight Saga and set in 1962; Wadzilla, a parody of 1950s monster movies; "The Diary of Anne Frankenstein," satirizing the Diary of Anne Frank and Hitler's Germany; and and "Zom B Movie", a spoof of zombie films. Here's the trailer:

An aspiring filmmaker doesn't have to have a ton of money to make a good grindhouse movie, and the feature I Didn't Come Here To Die, in which a group of young volunteer workers come to grisly ends in a rural project, carefully walks a line between looking cheap and cultivating a moody, primitive quality. It brings to mind a line from "Mystery Science Theatre 3000:" "This film looks like everyone's Last Known Photo."

The program "Georgia Fever Dreams" offers four local horror shorts, including Andrew Shearer's raunchy Freddie Krueger parody "A Wet Dream on Elm Street;" Taraja Ramese's enigmatic "Data Entry;" Eddie Ray's brassy heavy metal spoof "Satanic Panic: Band Out of Hell;" and Chris Ethridge's "Survivor Type," in which a disgraced doctor goes to increasingly horrific lengths to keep from starving on a desert island. "Survivor Type" gets credit for adapting a seemingly unfilmable Stephen King story that plays like Tom Hanks' Cast Away gone horribly wrong.

Buried Alive Film Festival. Nov. 11-13. Plaza Theatre, 1049 Ponce de Leon Ave.

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