Mind-blowing Japanese zombie movie and other highlights at this weekend’s Rio Grind Film Festival

A scene from Piercing.

Locally-lensed productions, the latest from one of filmdom’s most controversial directors, and a Japanese zombie movie that will blow your mind are some of the highlights of this year’s Rio Grind Film Festival.

An annual celebration of genre, exploitation, and indie films, the festival is presented by local moviehouse the Rio Theatre (1660 E. Broadway, at Broadway & Commercial). The four-day event kicks off this evening (Nov. 22) and runs until this Sunday, Nov. 25. Check out some of the highlights.

Videotronyx (Canada, 2018)—Written, directed, edited and shot by Vancouver’s Brendan Taylor, Videotronyx is “the story of a shy young man who discovers his passion in synth pop music – and will stop at nothing to achieve his goals. He manipulates, threatens and begs all those he encounters in the pursuit of his dreams. Forcing himself to morph into the glitching reflection of greatness he sees in his mind. (Thurs Nov 22 at 6 p.m., 5:30 doors)

The House That Jack Built (Denmark/France/Germany/Sweden, 2018)—Another Lars von Trier flick whose express aim seems to be getting people to walk out of the theatre. Sort of like the Emoji movie, but for serial killer fans. (Friday Nov. 23 at 7:30 p.m.)

The Fog (USA, 1980)—The movie John Carpenter made after Halloween that you saw because you liked Halloween. In a 4k restoration, natch. (Fri Nov 23 at 10:30 p.m.)

One Cut of the Dead (Japan, 2017)—A zombie film for people who hate zombie films, One Cut of the Dead puts a triple spin on done-to-death (pardon the pun) tropes. (Sun Nov 25 at 9:30 p.m.)

This year’s sleeper action hero, from One Cut for the Dead.

Piercing (USA, 2018)—Director Nicolas Pesce’s follow-up to his arthouse horror (and available on Netflix) movie The Eyes of My Mother. It’s described as “a stylishly brutal black S&M comedy” and is based on  1994 novel (published in English in 2008 as Piercing) by Japanese author Ryû Murakami. (Sat Nov 24 at 9:45 p.m.)

Amazon Hot Box (Canada, 2018)—A good old women-in-prison exploitation film from Vancouver’s Vancouver’s Generativity Productions & Darkside Releasing, Amazon Hot Box makes its Canadian premiere at the Rio Grind. From the official description: “Filmed in Georgia with Tynbee Island’s civil war era Fort Pulaski as the tropical prison, with crew and actors from The Walking Dead and Stranger Things, Amazon Hot Box features wild action, crackling comic dialogue, and a blistering original soundtrack.” Vancouver actress/model Tristan Risk and executive producer David Aboussafy will be in attendance. (Sat Nov 24 at 11:45 p.m.)

There’s lots more, including a well-received indie thriller called The Standoff at Sparrow Creek, a horror-thriller set in the world of Norwegian black metal, and all six episodes of Post-Apocalypto, a series of cartoons featuring music by Tenacious D and hand-drawn art by Jack Black.

A scene from Lords of Chaos, a horror-thriller set in the world of Norwegian black metal.

Visit riotheatre.ca for tickets and more info.

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