"Jennifer’s Bodies is a roving annual festival of female-helmed horror movies and part of Women In Horror Recognition Month, an international assortment of affiliated events organised partly to highlight just how much women can and do contribute to the genre outwith the typically accepted factors of tits, ass and mezzosoprano screaming." Starburst Magazine

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Where it Dwells - Female Driven Scottish Student Home Invasion Film Needs Your Help!

Where it Dwells is the final graduation project of Screen Academy Scotland student Kayleigh Boyd, starring Saskia Ashdown and produced by Sunrise Ishimwe.  Having seen a rough cut of the film, I think we have something really special here that would go down a treat with film festival viewers, that would also really gives audiences a great insight into what this young Scot is capable of.

Putting a twist on the classic home invasion story, Where it Dwells is a short film that pays homage to films like Hush, The Shining and Memento.  There is a beautiful subtlety to it.  One that makes for a short film that is genuinely eerie and quietly disturbing....which makes it all the more effective and most certainly gives it the potential to be fleshed out into a full feature.

Saskia Ashdown gives a beautiful and very understated performance.  When paired with Boyd's tight script and excellent direction, complimented by cinematographer Stuart's wonderful attention to visual detail, everything jells together perfectly.  

I'm always particularly happy to see Scottish chicks making horror films (these are my people after all!) as it still is very much a massive sausage fest in this country, that I really hope that folks will get behind Kayleigh and see just what she has to offer.  

Kayleigh and her cast and crew are currently raising funds to help complete post-production on the film and to use anything left over to go towards film festival submission charges and are looking for backers.  If this is something you would be interested in getting behind, you can check out their IndieGoGo campaign here.  

Thursday, 1 February 2018

Women in Horror Spotlight - Melanie Light

Throughout the month of February, I am going to be highlighting some of the most influential and kickass women in horror and pay tribute to some of the amazing things they have used their voice and their art to speak out about regarding various issues in our society.  

With the dairy industry responding to Veganuary with their Februdairy campaign, I felt that Melanie Light was absolutely the number one woman to start this series off with.

First and foremost, Melanie is an awesome fucking individual, end of.  For everything that I believe in, I feel that she's one of my total girly soulmates.  Through her art, she totally expresses the way that I think and feel about so much, and in a way, that I have yet to be able to even properly express myself.  That makes her a true inspiration in my eyes, and also why I think everyone needs to see her work. 

A little while ago, one of my young staff members had been asking for scary films to watch, I sent him a link to The Herd.  It genuinely got to him.  So much so that when one of our friends asked just last week for us to recommend scary films to him, I was asked the name of the film I had recommended to his bud and re-shared the link.  I got some really awesome feedback with people asking for me to recommend more films like that, and others checking out Melanie's other work on their own and absolutely loving it which was really awesome to hear.

The thing with The Herd, is that to "normal" society (don't even know what the fuck that means, haha), the dairy industry is totally cool and what's wrong with "milkin' a coo" and all that?!  When you show them it from a human perspective, from the truly non-specist point of view, it suddenly becomes this utterly horrific and brutal situation that they wouldn't wish on their worst enemy!  It's really weird.  

I feel that Melanie encaptures everything here, from animal rights to feminism and how society deems those they feel are "lesser creatures" (animals and humans), and in the most beautifully graphic and on point way possible.  This is one of the films I recommend the most when people ask me to recommend stuff to watch.  I love films that are not only wonderfully dark but dark for a purpose, because they reflect society's general human acceptance of the most twisted of things.     

Please watch The Herd, have a wee think about it and then be sure to let me know your thoughts! :)  

Want to know what is probably the most truly inspirational thing about this awesome chick....she literally went from making films about serial killers to animal rights with her feminist art.  Don't think I need to point out the beautiful irony and wonder of this.  Melanie is awesome and so incredibly fearless in her fight to end cruelty to both animals and women, end of!  We need more Light in our lives! <3  

If you like The Herd, or are curious about Melanie's film growth, then please be sure to check out her website.   If you are particularly wanting to see more animal rights stuff, then definitely check out The Skin You're In on her website, as well as Vimeo.  Also be totally sure to check out Switch and Escape for lots of killer goodness as well!

Oooh, side note.....these are just Melanie's amazing films that she's done herself, she has also worked on a shit load of awesome films including The Autopsy of Jane Doe, Cockneys vs Zombies, Doghouse and Centurian. 

Her most recent work is Crispian Mills new film, Slaughterhouse Rulz.  Yup, the Crispian Mills of Kula Shaker for all y'all 90's kids like moi, haha.  He's also the Crispian who wrote the brilliant and severely underrated A Fantastic Fear of Everything, and is getting us Simon Pegg and Nick Frost back together, woohoo! :)  

Just to balance out the dark subject matter though, I think we need some Melanie doing work with the Animal Justice Project showing that happiness is truly being covered in piglets! :)

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Jennifer's Bodies 2017 Official Selection - Sophia Cacciola starring With Whip, from Lianne O'Shea!

Sophia Cacciola is one powerhouse of a lady!  And a Vegan one at that!  This filmmaker/actress/musician has been done so much within the past ten years, it's hard to keep up.

For me personally, first and foremost it was her film TEN that first got my attention.  Ten was awesome!  And not only did Sophia write and direct the film, she also played a folk singer in it too....which was a nice little way of showing us just how wickedly talented she actually is!

This year I have a film that Sophia and her partner in crime, Michael Epstein produced, and that Sophia starred in, alongside writer Lianne O' Shea and director Aviv Rubinstein.  :)

With Whip is a delicious little short that takes a cheeky swipe at consumerism and how brain dead our society has actually become.  It may be short, but it is most definitely sweet!  In an ever so naughty way!

You can follow more of Sophia's work at her website and check out her latest feature, Blood of the Tribades on Amazon and VOD.  Oooh, Sophia also features in Izzy Lee's Innsmouth, showing at Jennifer's Bodies as well. :) 

Check out the trailer for Blood of the Tribades below. 

Jennifer's Bodies 2017 Official Selection - Jessica Cameron's, Tristan Risk and Ellie Church Starring MANIA!

So I was supposed to be screening Mania last year, but due to projector problems just before I was away to show it, I was annoyingly unable to let people into the madness!!  Amusingly enough, it was after a burlesque act that everything crashed, haha.  Anyhoo, I  LOVE this film and know that you all need to see it! 

Tomorrow, you will finally get to see this incredible film from one of Jennifer's Bodies favourites, Jessica Cameron, and starring horror darlings Tristan Risk and Ellie Church! :) 

I have been screening Jess's work for YEARS....first starting with the lovely lady as an actress and teaming up with Elisabeth and Brenda Fies.  It makes me so freakin' proud to see just how far she has come, how little shit she takes, and just how much of a genuine bad ass she is!  And she can play so sweet at the same time.  That is an admirable quality for sure and Jessica Cameron oooooozes it from her every pore!

Jess is easily one of the most identifiable women at the forefront of Women in Horror, and she owns that position for a reason!  This woman is a workaholic who never stops.  

As an actress, Jess has been totally earning her reputation as a total scream queen over the years.  But it is when you look behind the scenes, that you realise that she is making equally as much of, if not more of, a bad ass reputation!  Anyone who has seen Truth or Dare will realise that this is a girl unafraid to push boundaries.  Mania continues to do the same thing...push the boundaries...fight convention!  And in the most darkly delicious of ways possible! 

Come and check it out this Sunday at Blackfriars in Glasgow! 

You can follow Jessica on Facebook, Twitter and at her Official Website.  

Friday, 17 February 2017

Jennifer's Bodies 2017 Official Selection - Izzy Lee's Innsmouth!

To make an outstanding short film, one that leaves the audience craving for more, desperate to further discover the characters they have been introduced to, in a fascinating world, after only the shortest of introductions...it takes some major talent!  Director Izzy Lee most certainly has the level of talent required to deliver such a film and Innsmouth is proof of that.  A film that totally left me wanting to explore this gender-flipped, loose adaptation of Lovecraft's Shadow Over Innsmouth all the more.  

Izzy is an incredible director with a capacity for wonderful attention to detail and atmosphere in visually stunning films that really make you think.  You can check out more of her work at her website Nihil Noctem Films and also go like her on Facebook too.  :)  

Innsmouth is a great example of bonding between some of my favourite women working within horror today with both Tristan Risk and Sophia Cacciola involved too.  Yay! <3 

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Jennifer's Bodies 2017 Official Selection - Gigi Saul Guerrero's Madre De Dios, Starring Tristan Risk!

For many years, Gigi Saul Guerrero has been a personal favourite of mine.  She is one bad ass chick and one hell of a filmmaker to boot!  

This year I shall be showing her Tristan Risk starring short Madre De Dios.  

My mate Finnie summed this up perfectly....."Like the Exorcist on crack!"  I have to agree with him.  Haha.  If you have seen any of Gigi's prior work, you will have a pretty good idea of just how accurate he is going to be!  Haha. 

Tristan Risk is obviously one of our ultimate darlings in horror, and Gigi, along with her Luchagore team have most definitely joined the party.  There is so much talent here.  Like, every time I watch From Dusk Till Dawn, I keep thinking, we need Gigi directing dammit!!  From Dusk Till Dawn is easily one of my favourite shows.....Gigi is THAT awesome!!  Check out my interview with the lovely lady from 2014 to get a better idea, and to also kinda geek over how far she has come in such a short period of time.  Gigi = LOVE!! <3 

To keep up to date with her work, please check out Luchagore Productions on Facebook and be sure to follow Gigi on Twitter as well.  

Jennifer's Bodies 2017 - Women in Horror Panel Lineup.

Jessica Bowman - Director of Rabbits Take Revenge 

Jessica, Jessica, Jessica.  My love.  My darling.  My wife!  Haha.  Jess and I have worked together on a number of projects with boys, but it is Jess's directorial debut I am MOST excited for!  Rabbits Take (mother fucking) Revenge!!!!!  Jess has worked with me on horror, dystopian future and fantasy films.  Her total bunny rights flick though that she is soon to be shooting....it melts my little heart!  She is an awesome, awesome chickaroo and I am glad that people are digging her script so far.  :)

Rabbits Take Revenge is a film after my own heart, I am a total animal rights activist, anti-vivisection and pro-women in film.  It makes me so happy that special effects/makeup artist Samantha Jack, who is working on the film, has transferred to a cruelty-free makeup as well after realising how many big brands that are makeup staples, are also cruel and evil.  Sam has even turned down work due to people demanding animal-tested makeup.  Yup....that's how rad these girls are!!  Rabbits Take Revenge is a total girl-powered animal rights film and I am behind it 110%.  Jess is also seriously one of the closest people you can ever find to being soooooo like me!!!  Haha.  She ooozes Women in Horror and will make a great panelist!

Jessica will also be introducing Hayley McInline's Bridal Fever trailer, which she worked on.  Unfortunately, Hayley is heavily preggers and in total agony so will probably not be able to make it.  We can still hope though. :)  Be well Hayley! <3 

(Pictured above - Jess and I covered in our screen husband, Craig McGinlay's FAKE blood, haha!!)

Julie Robinson - Director of Were

I am so excited to be giving fellow Scot, Julie Robinson's Were, its world premiere at Jennifer's Bodies this year.  This busy mother of two has been a Lighting Console Operator and Vision Engineer at BBC Scotland since 2000 and runs her production company, Jumbled Up Productions, in her spare time.  With the BBC she has worked on everything from Mrs Brown's Boys to T in the Park, Harry Potter at the Castle, BAFTA Scotland awards to loads of other stuff including entertainment shows to sports.  

Were is Julie's first horror and third project with her company.  What I love most about Julie through her own personal stuff such as documentary Socks and Shoes Off, is that she is teaching young girls (and boys....all the way through to grannies!!) to be bad asses and learning how to protect themselves.  Were is most definitely a reflection on this.  I guess the old adage "don't judge a book by its cover" is oh so apt here!

Julie will be on the Women in Horror Month panel and will also have cast and crew in attendance.  :)

Jo Osborne - Director of Requital

Jo, like Julie, is another awesome chick I have only met recently.  And through none other than Woman in Horror Month founder Hannah Neurotica, who had Jo over for the US premiere of Requital at her Ax Wound Festival.

Not only is Jo a filmmaker, but she also runs the Love Hurts Film Festival in Glasgow as well, which actually had its latest event last night, February 14th.  I can't wait to get Jo's input on being a woman in film, my beloved Hannah, and the joys of running a film festival as well.

Jo will be there to introduce Requital, as well as feature on the Women in Horror panel. :)

Ben Thompson - Director of Nutcracker

I first discovered Ben Thompson last year when he had submitted his film Nutcracker for funding from Film Industry Scotland.  His script was incredible and a total reflection on so many important topics at the forefront of modern western society today.  It is a darkly delicious take on a whole culture...a culture that needs to change!  Nutcracker is definitely a film most perfectly suited to Women in Horror Month, it is directed by a guy, but with a total feminist story, strong female lead and a lot of awesome chicks behind the scene....Ben is totally the kind of male director we love!

Ben is going to be joining us on the Women in Horror Month panel and also giving us a first look at the wicked trailer for Nutcracker as well.  Ben is also a film technician at Screen Academy Scotland.