1st Latin American Fantastic Film Market showcases new pics from region’s fanboy filmmakers
Three movies from budding Latin American auteurs – “Good Manners,” “The Devil’s Breath,” and “The Darkness” – are among 15 projects and six pix-in-post set to be unveiled at Blood Window, Latin America’s first attempt on home-turf to highlight via a dedicated market one of its prime export assets: Genre movies.
Split into a co-prod forum, Beyond the Window, a competition of films at rough-cut, Bloody Work in Progress (BWIP), plus a Fantastic Films in Progress section, panels and special presentations, Blood Window will unspool Dec. 3-6 in Buenos Aires parallel to the main general-purpose market at Ventana Sur.
Produced by Sao Paulo’s Dezenove Som e Imagems, “Good Manners” (pictured in a storyboard sketch) is the second two-hander from Brazil’s Juliana Rojas and Marco Dutra, behind Cannes 2011’s Un Certain Regard entry “Hard Labor.”
Put through Cannes Cinefondation Residence and dubbed a Brazilian “Rosemary’s Baby” by Dezenove’s Sara Silveira, who will present “Manners” at Ventana Sur, tale turns on a maid who cares like a mother for her dead mistress’ child, a young werewolf, and drum into him some good manners.
Colombian Alfonso Acosta, who impressed with debut “The Crack,” a grieving family drama with building horror overtones and eOne Intl. pick-up, will unveil “The Wolf’s Breath,” a “cold, quiet, brutal film,” Acosta said, about a she werewolf’s regressing;”
Produced by Pablo Zimbron at Mexico’s Varios Lobos, and directed by Daniel Castro (“TAU”), “The Darkness” is a psychological thriller about a family in an isolated hamlet cabin, said Zimbron. Skedded to roll second-half 2014, it is co-produced by Jorge Michel Grau and Mayra Castro’s Velarium Arts, fast-emerging as one of Mexico’s prime genre pic production hubs.
Of other Beyond the Window projects to be pitched next week in Buenos Aires, Argentina’s Emiliano Romero will unveil “Guilty,” which will deepen the style, he said, of his baroque black comedy, feature debut “Moles.”
Marking a distinct change of direction for Uruguay’s Pablo Stoll, celebrated for the hangdog-humored arthouse works “Whisky” and “21 Watts,” “Hit” is a teen romantic comedy, then thriller, then zombie movie, per Stoll.
Blood Window underscores the weight of Argentine genre production – “Argentina, with Mexico, now has what could be called a genre ‘movement,’” Beyond the Window organizer Javier Fernandez said.
Argentine Gonzalo Gutierrez will present “The Empty Kingdom,” an unusual – for Argentina – sword and sorcery actioner and promo for his vfx talents, set up at Sinema, producer of 2013 Argentine B.O. hit “Corazon de leon.”
Other Argentine projects in Beyond the Window: Living dead conspiracy thriller “El Plata,” from Tamae Garateguy, famed for erotic wolverine tale “She Wolf”; the Apocalypse chiller “Necronomicon,” from Marcelo Schapces; “The Heavy Case of Benavidez,” a highly stylized dramedy laced with fright-fare from Laura Casabe, best-known for her Peronist lampoon, “The Good Fairy: a Peronist Fable”; and Gonzalo Gutierrez’s gothic terror tale “Resurrection,” about a young priest, who pacts to avoid death.
“El Plata” segues to Blood Window from September’s Fantastic Market in Austin, Texas.
Brazil is repped by “Mannequins,” a multiplatform project from Joao Alves about a department store worker who springs a possessed mannequin mass attack on humanity during Rio’s Carnival.
From Mexico, one buzzed-up project is “Eat Me,” about a sybarite turned cannibal, from Mexico’s David Michan (“Adverse Effects”); Mexican Chiva MF will pitch psychological chiller “Satori”; Ecuador’s Diego Araujo, at Ventana Sur with Primer Corte-player “Holiday,” will present “5/5,” a teen found-footage horror movie; Chile’s Francesc Morales “Apio verde”) will talk up gay slasher movie “Zamudio Law.”
Blood Window is a sign of the times. “Genre production has always been around in Latin America to a larger or lesser degree,” said San Sebastian Festival director Jose Luis Rebordinos, who curated BWIP. “But now it’s building,” he added, citing causes such as the drive for wider audiences and international markets, inspiration from the U.S. and parts of Europe, and the youth of many genre cineastes. “It’s a bit early to judge, but one clear trend seems to be use of classic genre conventions, which are paid tribute to or reworked.”
Of BWIP entries, “Black Sea,” from cult Brazilian director Rodrigo Aragao, weighs in as a purposefully over-the-top zombie splatfest, which was lapped up by Aragao fanboys at October’s Sitges Fest.
Argentine first-timer Mauricio Brunetti’s “The Innocents” marks an ambitious attempt at genre – an around-1850-set haunted house chiller – from Fernando Sokolowicz’s Aleph Cine, an Argentine production leader best known for its dramas.
A social-issue drama with genre elements, “The Window,” from Chile’s Rodrigo Susarte, chronicles a social protest mass suicide; psycho-thriller “Restless Sea,” from Brazil’s Fernando Martelli (“Limbo), stars famed Brazilian TV star Rita Guedes as an increasingly disturbed wife.
Also in BWIP, Miguel Urrutia’s real-time, multi-twist “The Game of the Hangman,” starring Jason Chad Roth as a kidnapped U.S. constructor, rolls off a good buzz at Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and Urrutia’s Ibero-American competish win at November’s Buenos Aires Rojo Sangre for his debut, “Wake Up and Die.”
Argentine Gabriel Grieco will present “Still Life,” described as a rural slasher involving vegan activists; Chilean Pablo Illanes, best-known for “Baby Shower,” will unveil zombie-outbreak-themed “Videoclub,” which won the Open Veins section at Argentina’s Mar del Plata Festival.
Round tables include “Darkness To the World.” Where panelists, such as XYZ Films’ Nate Bolotin, will analyze current fantastic film production and distribution.
BLOOD WINDOW, VENTANA SUR, DEC. 3-6
BEYOND THE WINDOW
“5/5,” (Diego Araujo, Ecuador)
“The Darkness,” (Daniel Castro Zimbron, Mexico)
“Eat Me,” (David Michan, Mexico)
“The Empty Kingdom,” (Gonzalo Gutierrez, Argentina)
“Good Manners,” (Juliana Rojas, Marco Dutra, Brazil)
“Guilty,” (Emiliano Romero, Argentina)
“The Heavy Suitcase of Benavidez,” (Laura Casabe, Argentina)
“Mannequins,” (Joao Alves, Brazil)
“Necronomicon,” (Marcelo Schapces, Brazil-Argentina)
“El Plata,” (Tamae Garateguy, Argentina)
“Resurrection,” Gonzalo Calzada, Argentina)
“Satori,” (Chiva DF, Mexico)
“Summer Hit,” (Pablo Stoll, Uruguay, Chile, Brazil)
“The Wolf’s Breath,” (Alfonso Acosta, Colombia)
“Zamudio Law,” (Francesc Morales, Chile).
BLOODY WORK IN PROGRESS (BWIP)
“Black Sea,” (Rodrigo Aragao, Brazil)
“The Game of the Hangman,” (Miguel Urrutia, Colombia
“The Innocents,” (Mauricio Brunetti, Argentina)
“Restless Sea,” (Fernando Mantelli, Brazil)
“Videoclub,” (Pablo Illanes, Chile)
“The Window,” (Rodrigo Susarte, Chile)
FFIP FANTASTICFILMS IN PROGRESS
“Hard Cop. Live and Let Kill,” (Juan Gabriel Conuel, Argentina)
“Hidden in the Woods,” (Patricio Valladares, Chile)
“The Marks,” (Marcelo Diez, Argentina)
“Necrophobia,” (Daniel de la Vega, Argentina)
“Ouija Board,” Amanda Maya, Brazil)
“Patient 27,” (Alejandro G. Alegre, Mexico)
“Rooster Blood,” (Mariano Dawidson, Argentina)