From embattled punk bands to Yakuza vampires, this year's action-thriller-horror series has something for everyone but your children and your grandmother.
Fans of thrills, chills and martial arts skills refreshed their Twitter feeds with great anticipation this morning as the Toronto International Film Festival revealed its Midnight Madness slate. Keeping to tradition, series curator Colin Geddes mercilessly teased MM fans last night with @mmadnesstiff, offering cryptic clues and carefully cropped stills, prompting a global guessing game on what the chosen films would be.
Fans of Jeremy Saulnier’s bleak Blue Ruin will be treated to his latest violent action thriller, Green Room. Takashi Miike, who went from Midnight Madness to the TIFF Masters series in years past, returns to MM with the promisingly bonkers Yakuza Apocalypse, billed as a “Japanese action fantasy Yakuza vampire film”—because, why not? Turkey (the country, not—never mind) makes its first appearance in Midnight Madness with the blisteringly brutal Baskin, in which a cluster of cops inadvertently bust in on a Satanic cult and find themselves battling their way out of hell. And the highly anticipated teen-slasher homage The Final Girls, a meta-horror comedy starring Taissa Farmiga that reputedly out-screams Scream, winds up the list.
Other titles include Russian cyborg thriller Hardcore; Katharine Isabelle starrer The Girl in the Photographs; The Mind’s Eye, the latest from Almost Human director Joe Begos; martial-arts crime-thriller SPL2: A Time for Consequences, starring the legendary Tony Jaa; supernatural chiller The Devil’s Candy; and the super-mysterious Southbound, by directors Roxanne Benjamin, David Bruckner, Patrick Horvath, and Radio Silence. Plus, for the first time since the delightfully deranged The Legend of Beaver Dam, the festival has programmed a short film, this one a madcap rearranging of The Shining called The Chickening. The shrieking, and clucking, starts Thursday, September 10 at 11:59 p.m. at the Ryerson Theatre.