"So you're a C.I.A. plant?" Cutting to the chase! Showtime has unveiled a new official full trailer for Errol Morris' latest documentary titled My Psychedelic Love Story, which is premiering at AFI Fest coming up this fall. We posted a teaser trailer for this doc earlier in the summer, before it had an official title, now it's set to debut on Showtime in November. This documentary focuses, once again, on LSD and the "High Priest of LSD" Timothy Leary. And this isn't the first time Morris has dabbled in LSD, as his Netflix series "Wormwood" is also about the CIA and psychedelics. The film is inspired by Harcourt-Smith's memoir, "Tripping the Bardo with Timothy Leary: My Psychedelic Love Story", and Morris interviews her to discuss her history with Leary before he became an informant for the FBI. "Devotion or selfishness? Perfect love or outright betrayal? Destiny or manipulation? Whatever the reason, the doomed relationship between Joanna and Timothy put the final nail in the coffin of the 1960s counterculture." Damn this looks crazy fascinating.
"I think we need to finish our story." What if Pixar made a horror movie? That's the best way to pitch this short. A Night in Camp Heebie Jeebie is an amusing animated horror short film made by filmmaker / animator Dylan Chase. This passion project took him three years to complete in his own time, working with his collaborator Dave Jacobson. It recently premiered at the Nightstream Film Festival to rave reviews. One stormy night in Camp Heebie Jeebie, five girl scouts realize that the spooky stories they've been telling each other just to pass the time might not be just stories. Featuring the voices of Hadley Granger (Sawtooth), Britney Rose (Luna), Claire Gray (Static), Leon Masuda (Smootch), and also Riley Madison Perez (Sprinkles). It's playful with goofy character design, but also has a scary side to it. This one is a must watch.
"This is the biggest unfair advantage in human history." Vertical Ent. has released an official trailer for a sci-fi thriller titled Parallel, from filmmaker Isaac Ezban (of The Similars, The Incident). This originally premiered in 2018 at all the fall genre fests: FrightFest, Morbido, Sitges, Utopia, and a few others including Fantasia in Montreal. A group of friends stumble upon a mirror that serves as a portal to a "multiverse", but soon discover that importing knowledge from the other side in order to better their lives brings increasingly dangerous consequences. Whod've thought?! The film stars Aml Ameen, Martin Wallström, Georgia King, Mark O’Brien, Alyssa Diaz, with David Harewood and Kathleen Quinlan. I dig the setup and the intro to the parallel universe, but I'm worried it will get really cheesy when bad things start happening.
"Next Halloween… when the sun sets, and someone is alone… he kills." Michael is back again! And hungry for more. Universal + Blumhouse have revealed another new teaser trailer for the next Halloween sequel, titled Halloween Kills, which has been delayed from October of this year until October 2021 next year. This is the next sequel in the brand new trilogy (Halloween in 2018, Halloween Kills coming up, ending with Halloween Ends in 2022) and it's once again directed by David Gordon Green. No plot details have been revealed yet. The film is finished and ready to go, but the pandemic has forced them to wait and hold it for an extra year - but they're happy to tease with some scary footage anyway. Jamie Lee Curtis returns, joined by Anthony Michael Hall, Judy Greer, Kyle Richards, Robert Longstreet, Andi Matichak, and Nick Castle playing "The Shape". Just a small taste to keep everyone excited about this horror series.
"You're that girl… from the video." Gravitas has released an official trailer for an indie horror thriller film titled Don't Click, marking the feature directorial debut of filmmaker G-Hey Kim. This initially premiered at FrightFest a few months ago, and arrives on VOD in December. Bloody Disgusting describes it as "a mix between films like 8mm, Saw and Hellraiser, only with ghosts. Don't Click looks to mix pain and pleasure, Pinhead-style." A young man returns from a party to discover his roommate has disappeared after clicking on a nefarious porn ad - soon he wakes up with him stuck in a dank, surreal cellar with no way out. Starring Valter Skarsgard (another son of Stellan, and a brother of Alexander), Mark Koufos, and Catherine Howard. This looks super weird and terrifying, a dash of everything horrific including Ringu. Click to view.
"The wayward heart is just a wild animal… beast that needs to be tamed." Gravitas Ventures has released an official trailer for the indie psychological thriller / drama of sorts called Elyse, the first feature made by Anthony Hopkins' Colombian wife named Stella Hopkins. She also co-wrote the screenplay. Memory and hallucination intertwine to expose a history of trauma, revealing Elyse is Catatonic and institutionalized in a State Hospital. Her recovery is reliant on the dissolution of her marriage, the restoration of the relationship with her mother, and the mutual absolution with the nanny's daughter, Carmen. It's the care from Dr. Lewis and the unconditional love from her nurse, David, that promise Elyse a new life. The film stars Anthony Hopkins, Lisa Pepper as Elyse, as well as Aaron Tucker, Tara Arroyave, Fran Tucker, Anthony Apel, Julieta Oritiz, and Danny Jacobs. I'm not sure why they need to blatantly reveal in the synopsis that she's catatonic, but it doesn't make it any more interesting either. This all still looks rather forgettable.
"Sometimes we have to do things we don't want… to survive." STX Films has unveiled an official trailer for Songbird, being billed as "the first feature film to be made during COVID-19 in Los Angeles, and about the pandemic itself." Set in 2022, a COVID-23 pandemic ravages the world and its cities. The film centers on a handful of people as they navigate the new obstacles currently hindering society controlled by a pandemic: disease, martial law, quarantine, and vigilantes. Infected people are forced into quarantine camps known as Q-Zones. Starring KJ Apa as Nico, a courier who falls for a woman in lockdown, played by Sofia Carson. Songbird also stars Bradley Whitford and Demi Moore as a wealthy couple who may hold the key to Nico's mission; Alexandra Daddario as a singer enmeshed in a messy and forbidden affair; Paul Walter Hauser as a disabled veteran whose best friend – a drone named Max – is his eyes and ears to a world that has left him behind; Craig Robinson as Nico's boss; and Peter Stormare as the corrupt head of the city's "sanitation" department, which seizes those infected and transports them to the Q-Zone. Sounds like a truly horrifying thriller that hits just a little too close to home. Escapism or… escape right-back-into-reality-ism?
"A colorized acid trip through historic hell." Oscilloscope Labs has unveiled the US trailer for Twentieth Century, a very strange and absurdly weird biopic of sorts. This premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year, and also played at the Berlin, Cartagena, Bucheon, and L'Étrange Film Festivals this year. Renowned for his mesmerizing, gonzo biographical short films Mynarski Death Plummet and The Tesla World Light, filmmaker Matthew Rankin doubles down on his signature blend of historical and aesthetic abstraction with his debut feature, a bizarre biopic that re-imagines the formative years of the former Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King as a series of abject humiliations. This uber wacky, expressionism adventure stars Dan Beirne as Mackenzie, plus Sarianne Cormier, Catherine St-Laurent, Mikhaïl Ahooja, Brent Skagford, Seán Cullen, and Louis Negin. It's almost impossible to describe this film - some will hate it, some will go nuts for it. But at least it exists, for better or worse. You have to take a look.
"I'm so scared of breakin' up…" Some of the most creative filmmaking is in music videos, because they have the freedom to do whatever they want and express emotions in imaginative ways. Love Me Like You Hate Me is a music video for the Rainsford song "Love Me Like You Hate Me", and it stars Margaret Qualley (Rainsford's real-life sister) and Shia LaBeouf. It's a choreographed dance featuring the actors as lovers. The video is presented in the 4:3 aspect ratio with split above/below shots, and their movements play out opposite of each other - each video ends up where the other one begins. Rainsford (aka Rainey Qualley) wrote on Instagram: "Please watch it. It's filled with love and pain and tenderness and rage and real pieces of my heart." It is very NSFW - both actors perform entirely nude and while there is no sex, it is seductive and intimate. More than anything, it's worth watching as a bit of experimental filmmaking and expression.
"I don't fit in this body!" A festival promo trailer has debuted for an indie romantic drama titled Under My Skin, marking the feature directorial debut of Australian filmmaker David O'Donnell. It is premiering at the Raindance Film Festival in London this week - hence the trailer to go along with the premiere. One of the first ever films to deal with non-binary gender as a part of the plot. Denny, a free spirit and artist falls for Ryan, a straight laced lawyer. But when Denny questions gender their love is tested. The lead character, Denny, is played by four different actors who identify as non-binary, or trans non-binary: Liv Hewson, Bobbi Salvör Menuez, and newcomers Lex Ryan and Chloe Freeman. The cast includes Alex Russell and Alexis Denisof. I'm very curious to see how this film handles sexual identity as a key part of the story.
"Which one of these houses do you live in?" Don't forget your mask! Or else. This creepy new horror short is from filmmakers Zak White and Todd Spence, the same duo that makes lots of horror shorts all year long for Midnight Video. Face Mask is their latest creation, a social commentary horror about the pandemic and dangerous anti-mask idiots, as well as a very unsettling short with a wicked twist. When one man takes the trash out and is confronted by a neighbor one night, things get a bit tense. Starring Bill Parmentier and Zachary Allen Farmer. The mask guy's look and voice and everything about him is just so creepy. Spence & White, who let Adam Huber & Dan Allen direct this one, are always so good about taking a simple concept and making it super scary with some discomforting filmmaking tricks. And also writing something that comments on the pandemic (and masks) but doesn't overdo it is not that easy. Only 6-minutes - be careful.
"Sometimes you have to lose it all… to find what out what really matters." Pink Flamingo Films released the official trailer for an indie dramedy titled The Loss Adjuster, from the UK directed by Vincent Woods. Luke Goss stars as a "Hapless Insurance Loss Adjuster" who feels his life is spiraling out of control but discovers that even when you reach rock bottom, that some clouds really do have a silver lining. When his wife leaves him, he befriends strangers around the city at Christmas time. "The idea was to create a story of hope, fortitude, craziness set against sadness, loss and frustration but create the ability to laugh at the same time. Picking yourself up through tiny moments and kind gestures from those real friends around you and unexpected goodness." Also starring Guy Siner, Martin Kemp, Lorna Fitzgerald, Cathy Tyson, Joan Collins, and Kym Marsh. This looks a bit rough around the edges, but might still bring offer good tidings.