Liza, the Fox Fairy demolishes the competition at Nocturna 2015
by Alfonso Rivera
- The Hungarian film towers above the rest at a festival fuelled by screams and pure fun, which featured priceless visits from the fantastic genre’s cult filmmakers
The third edition of Nocturna (read the news), a festival dedicated to the fantastic genre, drew to a close last Saturday with Big Game [+see also:
film profile] by Jalmari Helander, a co-production between Finland, the United Kingdom and Germany. The gathering’s official jury (comprising director Paco Plaza, producer Enrique López Lavigne and actress Elena Furiase) showered the Hungarian title Liza, the Fox Fairy [+see also:
interview: Karoly Ujj Mészáros
film profile] with awards: Best Film, Best Director (Károli Ujj Mészáros), Best Actor (Szabolcs Bede Fazekas), Best Actress (Mónica Balsai), Best Screenplay and Best Special Effects (the latter two were won ex aequo with the US-Canadian film Exeter).
Other titles that emerged victorious from different sections were the outrageous Finnish movie Bunny, The Killer Thing (Nocturna Madness Best Film) and Britain’s Afterdeath (Nocturna Dark Visions Best Film). Enthusiasts of the genre got the chance to get to know two leading cult European figures up close and personal: the legendary Lamberto Bava, whose Demons didn’t fail to rouse the same shrieks as it did 30 years ago; and another director with a great future ahead of him, Alexandre Aja, who presented his Horns (2013) just days ahead of its long-awaited release in Spanish theatres.
Nestling among the world premieres, Víctor Matellano dared to make a new version of Vampyres by José Ramón Larraz (1974), shot in English and with the foreign market firmly in its sights: “With Spain as it is nowadays, without any funding from the TV channels, you have to look abroad if you want to sell, and for that you have to make genre films in a universal language and in English,” asserted the director.
Another Spaniard, Amadeu Artasona, presented his second feature, Don’t Speak, which was also filmed in English with a view to racking up international success (Princ Films will be in charge of selling it). “It was a challenge because with minimal resources, we had to build up this psychological horror in an unorthodox way: owing to budgetary restraints, we had to shoot during the day, and what we thought was going to be a problem actually became one of the film’s virtues,” he claimed.