We've come to the end of another Monster Fest and I have just about reached burn-out. I'm an old man now (well, 39) and there wasn't a snowflake's chance in Hell I was ever going to keep up with those who endured the all-night marathon or the closing night after-party.... at least not without pharmaceutical assistance. My plan was to stick around for the closing night celebrations but as you are about to read, that never happened.
With about 5-hours sleep I woke up with a headache this morning... nothing that a coffee can't fix. By the time I was showered and ready to leave my amazing sweetheart had a strong long-black prepared in a traveller mug. I kissed her goodbye and hit the road. The coffee was fucking shithouse! It wasn't her fault, our espresso machine needs descaling. So my mind was made up to grab another one when I got into the city. I arrived in Carlton with an hour to spare and then spent that entire hour driving around looking for a car park. City parking sucks-ass and I ended up several blocks away (and my mind flashed forward to the return walk late at night, and the mugging/murder/ass rape that might ensue). So by the time I arrived at the cinema there was no time for coffee... the first session was ready to go.
I watched a beautifully restored 4K remaster of EVIL DEAD 2, which in hindsight I could have missed 5-minutes of to get that coffee (my brain was already hurting and "thinking" was not on my agenda). The film was glorious. I have seen it more times than I can count - heck, our name Fake Shemp derives from Evil Dead - but seeing it on the big screen with a full audience was quite the experience. How fun it was to laugh along with other people... although one thing that shits me to the core are those dickheads who laugh louder than everyone else at random moments which aren't very funny. If you're one of those people - get fucked!
The EVIL DEAD 2 session ran over time, which meant that I had to go straight into my next session, which was starting immediately (no time for that coffee, dammit). The next movie was MONSTER SQUAD!!! Monster-Fucking-Squad!!! A bonafide classic. One of the best. A slice of my childhood... the type of shit I live for! Naturally it was a glorious screening, which was also a stunning 4K presentation. I didn't think I could love the movie any more than I already do, but this was my first time seeing it in a cinema with an audience and my God, how much fun it was! If you've never seen MONSTER SQUAD - DO!
So it was time for that coffee... whoops, not it wasn't. Dick Dale's Trasharama A Go-Go was starting and I had to jump straight back into the cinema (dammit). Dick was his usual loveable drunk self and he introduced his festival-within-the-festival as only he can. With a few words from some of the filmmakers it was go-time and the sell-out audience was treated to the festival's trashiest offerings. It was a curious line-up of shorts, which for the most part, were not as "trashy" as Dick's mini-fest normally offers. When I attend Trasharama I expect cheap and nasty DIY depravity with an emphasis on shock value. There were a few shocking moments, but for the most part this year's line-up fell more into the "high quality" bracket, which ordinarily we would want in a short film program... but this is no regular short film program... it was TRASHarama! Nevertheless, the audience lapped it up and who am I to question a full-house?
Dick Dale has been working on a feature-length film for the last few years, which he declares to be the world's first "Splatter Punk Nasty". He treated the audience to an exclusive trailer to promote his upcoming crowd-funding campaign in Feb/March. By all accounts it looks to be shaping up as a truly trashy extravaganza. WE LOVE DICK and encourage you to click the image below and like the Ribspreader Facebook page.
Coffee Coffee Coffee Coffee... nup. By this time I was already sporting a migraine from my lack of sleep, and the entire day coffeeless was egging it on. We're told to avoid caffeine when we have migraines but when you're regular cure for a headache is coffee, that's what you crave.
The final screening of the night was touted as one of Monster Fest's highlights this year, the shocking true story; LORDS OF CHAOS! This was a big event with Monster having to host the film in two cinemas at the same time. I was in line waiting for the door to open and was thrilled to have met one of FakeShemp's most loyal followers, Bianca Russell. We had been swapping messages throughout the festival and were both looking forward to a catch up. And so with only a few minutes to spare we swapped stories about both being under the weather (as well as general movie geek banter). I had been wanting to meet her for a while to thank her for the support over the last few years, and it was a pleasure to finally meet her. She will no doubt be reading this blog, and so Bianca... get better soon!!!
LOARD OF CHAOS was mental. It was a film unlike any other. Based on a true story that defies belief, it was a tale about two Norwegian black metal bands who took their pledge to darkness to the extreme when they resorted to arson and murder to promote their music. It was a graphic, confronting and surprisingly funny trip to hell and back, and you can read my full review at the link below.
Next up was the grand finale... the Monster Fest closing night awards and after party. As I mentioned earlier, my plan was to head in to share the celebrations with everyone. I had even planned to do a spot of roving-microphone for our podcast. I regret to say that I made a beeline down the stairs instead to the cafe below and ordered a strong long-black coffee. It was a delicious coffee, which immediately took the edge off my migraine. I drank it as I walked back to my car, at which I arrived without the excitement of a mugging, murder or ass-rape.
And that brings us to the end of FakeShemp's Monster Fest coverage... well, almost. I will be adding more reviews over the next couple of days, and I will be re-posting more photos from other people. It has been 4 days of mass-movie-consumption and sleep deprivation! And I wouldn't have it any other way. A massive THANK YOU and CONGRATULATIONS to the Monster crew for another insane year of gnarly goodness.
At Monster Fest VII: The Homecoming... this is Glenn, signing off!