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Shudder Theatre at Los Feliz 3 | Beyond Fest 2021
Double Feature Co-Presented by Cinematic Void
This screening is free courtesy of our sponsors. Ticket RSVP will be available 9am the day of the event on this page. There will be a standby line. This is a vaccinated-only screening.
Home / Now Showing / WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR / ALISON’S BIRTHDAY
West Coast Premiere! WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR, 2021, Severin Films, 194 min. Dir. Kier-La Janisse
Winning the SXSW Audience Award, cult film queen Kier-La Janisse is our fearless guide as she takes on a three-hour tour into the writhing, historical guts of a category of horror cinema that spans the cerebral and visceral, the spiritual and the deeply, darkly, and frequently blissfully profane. Offering a detailed filmography, an atlas of the collective consciousness and a deep dive into folk horror traditions and how they have manifested in horror cinema from around the world, Janisse combines fascinating interviews with over fifty people with skin in this age-old game, including filmmakers such as Piers Haggard (BLOOD ON SATAN’S CLAW), Robert Eggers (THE WITCH), Alice Lowe (PREVENGE), and Lawrence Gordon Clark (A GHOST STORY FOR CHRISTMAS), as well as critics, historians and academics. Topped off by captivating animated sequences that feature collage work by Guy Maddin and a score by Jim Williams, this is the must-see horror documentary of the year. – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas
World Premiere Restoration! ALISON’S BIRTHDAY, 1981, Severin Films, 97 min. Dir. Ian Coughlan
There’s a trope in Australian horror films that breaks down to the basic equation: city = good, outback/bush = bad. Undiscovered treasure ALISON’S BIRTHDAY turns that logic on its head; here, the eccentric and proudly European mythological darkness is a product of the city-dwelling middle-classes. Starring MAD MAX’s Joanne Samuel, what begins with a few teenage girls dabbling in a beautifully shot seance soon spirals into a full-throttle demonic cult conspiracy as Alison is warned she must conquer the evil Celtic matriarchal spirit Mirne before she turns nineteen. By the time that birthday arrives, the orphaned Alison fails to get out of the party her aunt and uncle have planned for her in Sydney and Mirne and her followers launch their spectacular, supernatural plans. A highlight of Kier-La Janisse’s documentary WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED: A HISTORY OF FOLK HORROR, this hidden jewel is here to thrill and intrigue in equal measure. – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas