The Final Girls Berlin Film Festival Announces Program for Upcoming 6th Edition

The Final Girls Berlin Film Festival Announces Program for Upcoming 6th Edition

Festival to present a virtual component February 4-7 2021 and planned physical edition for Halloween weekend 

The Final Girls Berlin Film Festival, Berlin’s premier showcase of horror films directed and produced by women and non-binary filmmakers, will return in the new year for the 6th time and first virtual edition. The fest will run from February 4 – 7, 2021, and include features, short blocks, and an impressive slate of talks and special offerings. Feature films will be geo-locked to Germany while several short blocks and all non-film programming will be viewable worldwide. This will be followed by a planned second in-person event to take place over Halloween weekend, October 29-31, at City Kino Wedding in Berlin.   

“Like many festivals confronting COVID-19, we thought long and hard about how to make our festival as safe and enjoyable as possible and decided to split our 6th edition,“ explains festival co-director Eli Lewy. “The February program includes a number of films about loneliness, technological reliance, and confinement that reflect our present-day reality in chilling ways.“ 

Co-director Sara Neidorf sees the current pandemic as a chance to connect across geographical distance and goes on to say “we’ve got a thrilling side program with workshops and talks from horror scholars that we’re extremely honored to have with us. These times are grim, but they bring an opportunity to virtually connect with an international feminist horror community that otherwise couldn’t normally make it to Berlin, so we hope more and more folks will emerge from the woodwork and come join us!“

Listed as one of MovieMaker Magazine’s Top 50 Genre Festivals in the World and named among Dread Central’s The Best Horror Festivals in the World, Final Girls Berlin has quickly announced itself as a leading international destination for genre fans and filmmakers alike, and is thrilled to present a dynamic digital line-up consisting of five features, five short blocks, and non-film events that include talks, a screenwriting workshop, special podcast episode, and more. 

FEATURE FILMS

FELLWECHSELZEIT (TIME OF MOULTING) Berlin premiere

Dir. Sabrina Mertens, Germany, 2020

Starring Zelda Espenschied, Miriam Schiweck

In a small town in 1970s West Germany, Stephanie is an intelligent and lively child living an insular life with her parents. She senses that something is wrong in her family, something that cannot be put into words, and she pushes against it where she can. FELLWECHSELZEIT is a heavily atmospheric and harrowing portrait of the ways in which oppressive and repressed family dynamics can influence and infect the lives of younger generations– not tangible, not namable, but inexorable.

LOS QUE VUELVEN (THE RETURNED) — Berlin premiere

Dir. Laura Casabé, Argentina, 2019

Starring Lali González, María Soldi, Alberto Ajaka

South America, 1919. The indigenous peoples of the Guarani tribe have either fled, been exterminated, or reduced to servitude. Julia, the wife of a landowner, gives birth to her third dead child. Desperate, she begs Kerana, her Indigenous maid, to bring him back to life. The creature returns, but not alone.

BUIO (DARKNESS) — German premiere 

Dir. Emanuela Rosi, Italy, 2019

Starring Denise Tantucci, Valerio Binasco, Gaia Bocci, Olimpia Tosatto

17-year-old Stella and her younger sisters, Luce and Aria, are locked inside their house with bars on the windows. Outside is the Apocalypse: two-thirds of humanity is dead since sunlight has become too strong and only men can venture outside. The girls stay locked in their house, alone, with no food until things begin to break down and puncture the delicate shell of their cloistered existence.

THE STYLIST— German premiere 

Dir. Jill Gevargizian, USA, 2020

Starring Najarra Townsend, Brea Grant

Everyone dreams of being someone else, but for Claire, that dream goes from an obsession to a living nightmare. Working as a hairstylist, Claire easily moves in and out of other people’s worlds and is able to seamlessly pursue her disturbing predilection. Her lonely life, gruesome hobby, and shocking secrets are thrown into turmoil when Olivia, her regular client, begs her to do her wedding hair. Could she have finally made a true friend, or is Olivia just like the rest? 

12 HOUR SHIFT — German premiere 

Dir.Brea Grant, USA, 2020 

Starring Angela Bettis, Chloe Farnworth, David Arquette

Nurse Mandy is desperate to make it through her double shift without incident. This proves to be particularly hard when you’re an addict and involved in black market organ-trading at the hospital. When her hapless cousin Regina messes up a kidney delivery, chaos descends on the Arkansas hospital as the two women frantically try to find a replacement through any means necessary. It doesn’t take long for things to spiral even further out of control when you throw in a dangerous convict, nagging patients, a well-meaning cop, and a whole lot of blood. 

SHORT FILM PROGRAMS

I. IT’S COMING FROM INSIDE THE SCREEN:

CYBER HORROR

SPYGLASS / Dir. Javi Prada, Producer: Beatriz Hernandez & Fran Moral, Spain, 2020

DON’T TEXT BACK! / Dirs. Kaye Adelaide & Mariel Sharp, Canada, 2020

FRAGILE.COM / Dir. Alison-Eve Hammersley, USA, 2020

HOME SWEET HOME / Dir. Agata Puszcz, Poland, 2020

KALLEY’S LAST REVIEW / Dir. Julia Bailey Johnson, USA, 2020

II. AN EYE FOR AN EYE

THERE WILL BE MONSTERS / Dir. Carlota Pereda, Spain, 2020

GIRLS’ NIGHT OUT OF BODY / Dirs. Hillary & Courtney Andujar, USA, 2020

THE HUNT / Dir. Amy Fajardo, Spain, 2020

RONG / Dir. Indira Iman, Indonesia, 2019

NJOUKCAMAT (THE TONGUES) / Dirs. Marja Bål Nango & Ingir Bål, Norway, 2020

SCOUT / Dir. Kodie Bedford, Australia, 2020

THE FOURTH WALL / Dir. Kelsey Bollig, France, 2020

III. BUSTING A GUT – COMEDY HORROR



STREAM / Dir. Eve Dufaud, Canada, 2019

GROWTH / Dir. Allison Miller, USA, 2020

HEAT / Dir. Thessa Meijer, Holland, 2020

YOU DON’T KNOW ME / Dirs. Isabelle Giroux & David Emond-Ferrat, Canada, 2020

THE MOTHER / Dir. Hope Olaidé Wilson, USA, 2020

MAKE A WISH / Dir. Dinh Thai, USA, 2019, Producer: Josephine Chang, Edward Hong & Diane Foster 

WAFFLE / Dir. Carlyn Hudson, USA, 2020

DING-DONG / Dir. Suki-Rose, USA, 2019

THE CLAW / Dir. Lael Rogers, USA, 2020

MELTED / Dir. Nikki Chapman, USA, 2020

YOUR MONSTER / Dir. Caroline Lindy, USA, 2020

DANNY’S GIRL / Dir. Emily Wilson, USA, 2020

IV. YOUNG BLOOD

THE ROUGAROU / Dir. Lorraine Caffery, USA, 2020

SHE-PACK / Dir. Fanny Oveson, Norway, 2018

THE LITTLE DEMON / Dir. Carol Van Hemelrjick, UK/Belgium, 2020

THE CURSE / Dir. Ellie Stewart, Canada, 2020

BAKEMOTO / Dir. Sumire Takamatsu, USA, 2020

CERULIA / Dir. Sofia Carrillo, Mexico, 2017

FISH WHISKERS / Dir. Roney, Canada, 2020


V. CABIN FEVER – ISOLATION HORROR


NOW THAT YOU’RE MINE / Dir. Petra Lumioksa, Finland, 2020

LOSE IT / Dirs. AJ Taylor & Maximilian Clark, Producer: Ann Lowry, USA, 2020

A DINNER PARTY / Dir. Michèle Kaye, Canada, 2020

FAT HENRY / Dir. England Simpson, USA, 2020

STUCCO / Dir. Janina Gavankar, USA, 2020

Hot Money (2020) Movie Review

Director: Susan Kucera

Plot: Confused by the foundations of our economy, stocks, derivatives, cost of energy and taxes? You are not alone. Untangle the complicated realities of our global financial system and its profound relationship to government, politics and climate change with the help of international experts and all the humour of a New Yorker cartoon, as we ‘out’ the whole charade that could to societal collapse.

Runtime: 1 Hour 58 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Hot Money starts as we see how two generations of Americans General Wesley Clark and Wes Clark Jr are looking to tackle the climate change problems America is facing, looking at how the money in the world has started to make people act differently, looking at how this can see their whole world taken away from investment due to the climate change. We continue to see how people’s lives have been changed from flooding, or fire or other natural weather events are causing people to lose the homes they invest in being left with nothing and how the endless circle of money problems that people haven’t been connecting to the climate change coming.

Thoughts on Hot Money

Thoughts – Hot Money is a documentary that will look at the connection between money and climate change, seeing how the world is changing, does need to be addressed before it is too late. We see how mostly America is seeing a bigger problem with the insurance of investment being turned away after years of it being put into people’s head, with the insurance companies not wanting to risk the cover. This does want to highlight climate change coming, it works well in the discussion like format between the father and son, from different generations, but other sides of the film can come off like they are talking down on everyone who isn’t supporting the change. It does focus on certain ideas of what could happen to make a change, though it doesn’t get into the full look into the bigger projects that could fix many of the problems coming.

Final Thoughts Hot Money is an interesting documentary that does end up showing us the warning of what is coming from a different point of view.



ABC Film Challenge – Catch Up 2020 – D – Daniel Isn’t Real (2019) Movie Review

Director: Adam Egypt Mortimer

Writer: Brian DeLeeuw, Adam Egypt Mortimer (Screenplay) Brian DeLeeuw (Novel)

Starring: Miles Robbins, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Sasha Lane, Mary Stuart Masterson, Hannah Marks, Chukudi Iwuji

Plot: A troubled college freshman, Luke, suffers a violent family trauma. He then resurrects his charismatic childhood imaginary friend Daniel to help him cope, not realizing how dangerous Daniel is.

Runtime: 1 Hour 40 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Disturbing

Story: Daniel Isn’t Real starts as a young boy Luke creates an invisible friend Daniel, one that he does lock away soon after, until he reaches his college age, struggling with his time in college Luke (Robbins) is trying to care for his mental unstable mother Claire (Masterson), when Daniel (Schwarzenegger) reappears in his life, being around to solve the problems he is facing.

When Luke meets Cassie (Lane) it is Daniel that helps him, only Daniel seems to know how to make everything perfect and shows a much darker side, one that will see Luke turn to more illegal actions.

Thoughts on Daniel Isn’t Real

Characters – Luke is the college student that been hiding an invisible friend for years, only for him to return during the stresses of college, it starts off like having someone that could help him through the day, be more productive with conversations, only for a much darker side coming out, as he looks like he might start following his mother’s problems, while he is trying to stay on top of the changes in his life. Daniel is the invisible friend, the confident version of Luke, he helps fill in the blanks, only he does have a violent side, one that lets him take control of Luke with dangerous consequences. Cassie is the young woman that Luke meets and starts a relationship with her artistic nature being the best side of her, being the one positive remaining in Luke’s life. Claire is Luke’s mother that has been dealing with problems for years, she has always been there for him, only now she is starting to question her own sanity, becoming a danger to herself.

PerformancesMiles Robbins brings to life the everyday stressed out college student trying to hold onto his own sanity. Patrick Schwarzenegger gets to bring the disturbing character to life, seemingly getting a lot of fun out of the darker side of the character. Sasha Lane is the grounded character with her own flair.

StoryThe story here follows a young college student who is dealing with a lot of stress in his life, sees him bring back to life his invisible friend, only to learn he has a disturbing side waiting to get out. We do get to dive into the everyday struggles with dealing with mentally ill parents, struggles with fitting in. the idea that an invisible friend could be darker, have motive and even be from another dimension, we get to see how this figure has his own reasons for its actions. We do start slow, but as soon as it gets into the darker side, we are thrown into a world we simply don’t know what will happen next.

Horror The horror in this film comes from the gore and horrific creation bought into the two worlds, seeing how they start to take over.

SettingsThe film does use the settings to show the difficult living situation of a college student, the dream like location for the artist along with the between worlds that could well be a gateway to hell.

Special EffectsThe effects in the film are great, with the creations being what makes his such a terrifying experience.


Scene of the Movie – Entering the other world.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Slow start.

Final Thoughts This is a disturbing horror that might start slow, it does get a horror filled ending that will keep everyone disturbed.

Overall: Truly Disturbing.