Random Weekend Thoughts...

London Frightfest 2013 has been and gone, this forum is available to post film reviews, chat, etc. from the festival.
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EvilAsh
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Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by EvilAsh » Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:42 pm

It'll be sad to move to a different screen (again) but it'll be interesting.

Who w*nks to R.I.P.D. Really dude?

Paul, when you get in a hole STOP DIGGING!

Its a shame the 'We are family' write up was less about the family of Frightfest and more about just one person and them putting bunnie ears on guests.

Another total mix of films, looking forward to Halloween.

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by TheDukeAbides » Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:59 pm

Who wanks in a cinema at all? Well any cinema not showing films with the expressed wish to engage in a bit of white water wristing.

My most random thought was the vibe of the festival felt a little flat. I enjoyed myself but I didn't get any sense of excitement or massive joy form the audience until after VHS2 was shown.

Maybe the circulating rumour and eventual confirmation of Screen 1's demise made people a little apprehensive about the future.

I'm massively bummed about Screen 1, I have a nostalgia for cinemas, of course having to wait and see what the end results will be, but, to be presumptive, just to make 2 sterile, run of the mill screens just means a lot of the charm will be lost.

Thanks to all the Empire staff.

Thanks to everyone who is involved in keeping FrightFest going and ticking over each year.

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by thatcambridgebird » Tue Aug 27, 2013 4:26 pm

Yeah, I sort of know what you mean. I thought the atmosphere was a little different this year too.

Sunday's programme felt really slow and plodding to me, and speaking to a friend in work who'd spoken to her friend about the weekend, the feeling from him and his seat-neighbours was one of disappointment at there not really being many 'frights' at a festival branding itself by that name.

I thought that most films just got a polite round of applause, with the exception of Cheap Thrills on Saturday night, where the crowd really swept up into the story and atmosphere.

Overall for me, it didn't feel as good as last year, but I know it must be incredibly difficult to please everyone, and I wouldn't want to be in Alan/Paul/Greg/Ian's shoes for the world, as they do a difficult and sterling job for us! That sounds like a grumble, but it's just an observation.

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by DJBenz » Tue Aug 27, 2013 5:20 pm

thatcambridgebird wrote:Sunday's programme felt really slow and plodding to me, and speaking to a friend in work who'd spoken to her friend about the weekend, the feeling from him and his seat-neighbours was one of disappointment at there not really being many 'frights' at a festival branding itself by that name.
"Misery Sunday" as we called it. TBH Monday wasn't a lot better, only Odd Thomas lifted my mood slightly.

They said beforehand that the key word from this year's festival is 'diversity', but I would have preferred more diversity within the horror genre, rather than stretching outside it (a lot of the films were too close to drama/thriller than horror for me).

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by sherbetbizarre » Tue Aug 27, 2013 7:03 pm

Despite Monday being billed as one of the strongest ever... I only liked one movie, and it didn't make my top five!

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by AdeBrown » Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:10 pm

It's a real shame that they are dividing up that cinema, but I guess it does not get filled, bar a few premiers and festivals.
With all those millions of pounds certain people earn in the film industry, perhaps someone could fund an imax screen that rises up from the floor to split the auditorium, so it can be opened up when we want to fill it for frightfest ;-)
Can an 800 seater Imax show non-imax films comfortably?

Splitting the whole festival up into smaller screens would be a real shame (not like the discovery screen with smaller screens) but I can't see how else that would work. That 300 seater room will come in handy, I wonder if there could be a few panels discussions/interviews to add to the Q&A - maybe one a day ? I recall fondly the Video Nasties panel.

Raindance festival sell you a pass for the whole festival and then you queue up an hour before the film to get in.
But most of those screenings hardly have anyone in (another shame, as I've seen some cracking indie and leftfield horror, and love their music documentary strand).

I enjoyed the 14 films I saw more than most years, but a couple of them would probably have grated had I been at every film.

The atmosphere was brilliant, as usual I'd like a larger area for people to mill about outside the screen (perhaps put the shop somewhere else, or maybe a larger awning on the square). I did not really chat to as many strangers this year, sorry about that. We did chat with a friendly chap in Busaba.

There did not seem to be a theme of the year, as there has often been (remember "Grim Sunday" ? and Mainstream Werewolf Films that predated that Twilight business?) The main theme was Non-Horror Horror.

Was it my imagination or were their fewer autograph scavengers outside?
I told myself that Michael Myers had dispatched them all. Well done him.
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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by kickasschewgum » Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:06 pm

I guess we're the odd ones out here but for me and all my friends that attended (and regularly attend) FrightFest, this was BY FAR the best line-up in the festival's history.

There were a huge number of really good films (if you chose between the screens wisely) and very few really terrible ones. Although I must admit that I continue to be mystified by decisions to put nonsense like Hammer of The Gods and Frankenstein's Army on the Main screen whilst Willow Creek, Rewind This and Snap all play the Discovery Screen. I guess it's just a concession to the distributors to get other, better movies for the festival.

The demise of the Empire Screen 1 is a complete personal tragedy for me (and, I'm sure many others) but these are, unfortunately, the times we live in. The Empire chain run a business that simply cannot exist if a 1,300 seat screen is only filled with 50 people per screening so I can completely understand their decision to split the screen in two. I may not like it but I do understand it.

That said, I urge the Frighfest guys not to make the mistake that so many other festivals make and have people queue up for tickets each morning in the inevitable change in the festival's format. It will alienate a huge amount of the audience. One of the key selling points of the festival is the "buy a seat for the festival" approach that it has always had. Maybe they could consider doing what the London Film Festival did when they moved to the Vue a few years ago and split the audience between 2 screens, showing the same movies across both screens with their start times staggered 15 minutes apart to allow for intros and Q&As for both showings. That way the "one seat for the whole festival" approach could remain. Perhaps the majority of weekend passholders in one screen and day passes and individual tickets in the other.

Just a thought...

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by soberdave72@hotmail.com » Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:29 pm

The shock news about the Empire screen being cut in 2 is a real shame, and it was a really really sad moment when the frightfest gang said at the start of Big Bad Wolves, that was the last film to be shown on it.

Please Please keep Weekend Passes, and try and keep the festival as close in spirit to what has gone before it. Id agree with the previous comments, about having 2 screens showing the same line up being the most practical. Perhaps one for the majority of Sleepy Qers, and one for overspill of the Que/online...

I thought it was quite telling, when the Frightfest guys said they would definately be back next year in the empire, maybe..it will change back to Odeon in the years to come.

Apart from this shock news, Another great festival, Six Storming films (Big Bad Wolves,We Are What We Are, I Spit On Your Grave 2,You're Next,Curse Of Chucky,Cheap Thrills), A Great Festival vibe, so many great film conversations with so many great people.

Huge thanks to Ian,Paul,Alan for another excellent festival.

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by TheDukeAbides » Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:33 pm

When I got to see Willow Creek's 2nd screening, moved to Screen 2, Ian introduced it by saying "Boy, did we get this one wrong."

The idea of splitting day and weekend and single films does smack a bit of an 'us and them' but I understand people musing over what it the best move forward and maybe there is an 'us and them' attitude - I know I'm massively protective about my seat.

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by The Soapmaker » Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:05 pm

kickasschewgum wrote:That said, I urge the Frighfest guys not to make the mistake that so many other festivals make and have people queue up for tickets each morning in the inevitable change in the festival's format. It will alienate a huge amount of the audience. One of the key selling points of the festival is the "buy a seat for the festival" approach that it has always had. Maybe they could consider doing what the London Film Festival did when they moved to the Vue a few years ago and split the audience between 2 screens, showing the same movies across both screens with their start times staggered 15 minutes apart to allow for intros and Q&As for both showings. That way the "one seat for the whole festival" approach could remain. Perhaps the majority of weekend passholders in one screen and day passes and individual tickets in the other.
I totally agree. I like to know what I'm seeing, when it's on and where I'm sitting. Then all I have to fret about is finding time to eat.

I do not want some kind of "expanded discovery screen" system, starting each day having to get up super early, queue for an hour, make (bad) snap decisions when the things I actually want to see are (inevitably) sold out, then spend the rest of the day feeling pissed off. I'm pissed off enough the rest of the year.

I agree that perhaps the only way of retaining the "weekend pass" system is to effectively have two "main" screens, showing the same films at staggered times (or perhaps even on staggered days).

The alternative is to drop the weekend pass system altogether, and turn it into a mini London Film Festival - more films, more screens, everything showing at least twice. You'd have to buy individual tickets (in advance), but perhaps there could be some kind of discount if you buy, say, more than 20 tickets. It could work, but I have to say Frightfest is different from the LFF - at the LFF picking and choosing is part of the process, there are loads of things I don't want to see; at Frightfest I'd basically like to see everything, if I could (and I prefer not to read up on the films before I see them).

It's silly, but I'm feeling depressed about this already. :(

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by TheDukeAbides » Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:44 am

I also thought there was a lack of Q&A's.

Every film seemed to be louder than the last one - even in the discovery screens.

I liked the turn you bloody phones off idents - hope they do it next year because I'm pretty sure I could do a few better than those chosen.

I'd also like to welcome all the new posters to this forum, some of you appearing to have emigrated from billy goat gruff land

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by chary » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:25 pm

I'm greatly saddened by the news, its the most comfortable cinema in Leicester Sq, i remember seeing jurassic park there when it first came out and had many great film memories since. Does anyone know the reason why? Does anyone know when, i definitely want to go there for the last film it ever shows

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by sherbetbizarre » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:34 pm

chary wrote:i remember seeing jurassic park there when it first came out
Me too!

Essentially it's a 1000+ seater, and the best they've done all year is sell around half of that during Star Trek Into Darkness. So financially it is no longer working having a screen that size.

Maybe I should have asked the manager why lowering the ticket prices would not have worked... ;)

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by thatcambridgebird » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:42 pm

chary wrote:I'm greatly saddened by the news, its the most comfortable cinema in Leicester Sq, i remember seeing jurassic park there when it first came out and had many great film memories since. Does anyone know the reason why? Does anyone know when, i definitely want to go there for the last film it ever shows
I've a feeling you've missed the boat - the last film ever showed was the closing film on Monday night for Frightfest.

Sadness. I love Screen 1, it's (was...sob :( ) such a beautiful space, and so perfect for FF. The only non-FrightFest film I saw there was Star Trek Into Darkness (what? :p ), and despite the film being a big pile of poo, I couldn't help but be swept up by the spectacle of it being projected in Screen 1 with all of the booming sounds and that huge screen.

I'm genuinely sad about it going, and I don't even live in London so don't go there half as much as some of you!

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Re: Random Weekend Thoughts...

Post by chary » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:10 pm

sherbetbizarre wrote:
chary wrote:i remember seeing jurassic park there when it first came out
Me too!

Essentially it's a 1000+ seater, and the best they've done all year is sell around half of that during Star Trek Into Darkness. So financially it is no longer working having a screen that size.

Maybe I should have asked the manager why lowering the ticket prices would not have worked... ;)
Cool! Where were you siting i was in l34.... Just kidding, do you remember when you could drive through china town.

It must be a new decision to change it, i remember just last year they upgraded the sound system too seems like such a waste

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