Phantom menaces - Page 3

Another Hole in the Head unleashes multiple malevolent ghosts. Plus: our guide to the film fest's horror highlights

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HoleHead includes some OK faux-docs -- and locally-filmed vampire amnesia mystery Apocrypha

Auschwitz (Uwe Boll, Germany, 2010) It takes serious cojones or at least a healthy dose of self-delusion, for Uwe Boll to decide he's the one to give us a realistic depiction of Auschwitz. Boll is often considered cinema's most reviled director, known more for his schlocky video game adaptations than for his sense of morality. But in Auschwitz, he does his best to reflect on a horrific atrocity, bookending his portrayal of the death camp with a short documentary in which he questions German youth about the Holocaust. The mind-boggling ignorance on display is somewhat effective, but these teenagers likely know about as much as most American high schoolers — if not more. And Boll's gritty Auschwitz isn't the answer: it's hard to watch at times, and it's certainly more to the point than Spielberg's Schindler's List (1993). But Boll shows his trademark lack of restraint, and the legitimately stirring moments are undercut by shock value violence. June 10, 9:20 p.m.; June 13, 7:20 p.m. (Louis Peitzman)

Helldriver (Yoshihiro Nishimura, Japan, 2010) Leave it to Japanese director Yoshihiro Nishimura (2008's Tokyo Gore Police) to give us a joyous, blood-soaked twist on zombies. Helldriver's living dead are distinguished by the antlers growing out of their foreheads — antlers that can be removed and ground into powder for use as a popular street drug. There's more of a plot to Helldriver than the set-up, but it's admittedly a little tough to make sense of it with body parts and buckets of blood flying in all directions. Short version: Kika (Yumiko Hara) has to take down her evil stepmother, who has become the Zombie Queen. To say there are casualties along the way is an understatement — nearly every character is flayed, decapitated, or torn into pieces, all with gleeful abandon. However gross Helldriver may be, it's an awful lot of fun, an over-the-top, distinctly Japanese reinvention of the genre. Fri/3 and June 13, 9:20 p.m. (Peitzman)

The Mole Man of Belmont Avenue (Mike Bradecich and John LaFlamboy, U.S., 2010) What happens when a pair of slacker brothers (writers-directors-stars Mike Bradecich and John LaFlamboy) inherit a dilapidated apartment building with a perilously low occupancy rate? What if that building also has a pet-eating monster scrambling between its walls? And what's that ever-hungry monster gonna eat once all the pets are gone? Dilemmas — all of them absurd, some of them gory, and most of them hilarious — abound in this clever, fast-paced cracker featuring Robert "Freddy Krueger" Englund in a cameo as a cranky, horny tenant. Chicago-bred comedians Bradecich and LaFlamboy have Simon Pegg-Nick Frost levels of chemistry. Is it too much to hope that the dreaded Mole Man will return so there'll be a sequel? Sun/5, 7:20 p.m.; Tues/7, 9:20 p.m. (Eddy)

The Oregonian (Calvin Lee Reeder, U.S., 2010) More an experiment in tedium than terror, Calvin Lee Reeder's The Oregonian will look familiar to anyone who has seen their share of David Lynch movies. Only unlike Lynch, Reeder offers little in the way of narrative or structure to counterbalance all the creepy randomness he throws at us. One can truly sympathize with the film's nameless heroine — a frightened young woman who, upon waking up in a station wagon covered in blood, embarks on a hellish journey through the Oregon countryside — for in watching The Oregonian in its entirety the audience also undergoes a seemingly endless slog, only the succession of borrowed gestures merely exhausts rather than frightens. If you really want some good backwoods scares, watch Gummo (1997) or the Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) instead. Sat/4, 9:20 p.m.; June 16, 7:20 p.m. (Sussman)

Comments

I have been on the set of GAC and the Host Zak Bagans (former film student by the way), came in and asked if he could use some of the space in the room...to do what I thought...he was rehearsing! Everything on that show was crap...thougth it was a cool halloween gig, till I found out it was all fake. We set our cameras up and watched the smoke and mirrors show. The guys were cool, but total frauds. We were introduce to the "stunt quardinator"...why would we need him, unless ohhh that's right, the falls, jumps, runs and screams are all fake...he makes sure that they don't get hurt and the make up artist makes sure that when they do...it looks real. From start to finish its a short movie...done quick and ad-libbed I was hoping for the real deal, instead it was BS!

Posted by Bob T on Jun. 01, 2011 @ 7:19 am

The more I think about it, the more I'm certain that show exists only to fuel drinking games!! Hilarious that they have a stunt guy on-set.

Posted by cheryl on Jun. 01, 2011 @ 10:52 am

Are you sure he wasn't doing this for stunt work or the cheesy "re-enactment" sequences? I had a friend who was on the set on their Niagra episode (filmed on the Canadian side at an old fort) who reported literally the opposite experience as yours.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 01, 2011 @ 5:19 pm

the "rehearsals" they film are for the interviews you see before they investigate and BoB T your just a jealous liar... keep hating on them cause this show is the best...dork LMAO

Posted by Guest on Jun. 02, 2011 @ 12:00 am

all you bastards hatin on Ghost Adventures including you Bob T with your little make up story abou being on the "set" of Ghost Adventures I was a guest investigator on their show and they are the MOST realistic paranormal team on TV...they have NO ONE in these locations except for them. So heres a message to all you trash talking JEALOUS haterz. They are the #1 paranormal show on televisiom that gets the best evidence of any tv shows. So do you think with all that success they would have haters???? Keep hatin folks for biggest bad asses in the paranormal. Bob T you will be cursed for makin up your stupid ass story

Posted by Bob T nice fake name dum ass on Jun. 01, 2011 @ 11:49 pm

they DO rehearsals and stuff for the reenactments for the interviews BEFORE the lockdown...I filmed with them as guest investigator on an episode....during the "Lockdown" its just the 3 of them and they are the most authentic investigators on television....Ghost Hunters is the show that has the "scenes"....and here's a message to all....being the #1 Paranormal Show on telelvision and all their success in the spotlight...if you dont have haters like the writer of this stupid blog....then you dont have success KUDOS to Ghost Adventures and we look forward to seeing many more seasons....shit they even have movies copying them!!!!!!!

Posted by Guest on Jun. 01, 2011 @ 11:56 pm

UR AWESOME! U calmed me down so thanks(:

Posted by AW YEA! on Jun. 07, 2011 @ 5:04 am

Zak had a stunt coordinator for a stunt he did for fun at Bonnie Springs Ranch....I laughed when the Bob T guy commented and made up the story funny dude.... they are super legit my friends dad owned one of the locations they filmed at and when they get locked down they actually have the owners watch the outside of the building proving they are in there by themselves... Ghost Adventures are awesome and go to their events they they will show you to your face its not a "smoke-n-mirrors" show like the loser said at the top comment

Posted by Guest on Jun. 02, 2011 @ 1:14 am

wow zak got pissed

Posted by chelsea on Jun. 02, 2011 @ 8:16 am

Ghost Adventures is a compelling show and I can personally attest to the presence of paranormal entities. Articles like this are the reason I only pick up the SF Bay Guardian for the weed ads in the back!

"If these films are fake-real, then shows like Ghost Adventures, which follow regular people through actual abandoned prisons, sanitariums, and the like, are real-fake."

No. The authenticity of people's experiences and life-changing encounters with unexplained phenomena are the inspiration to many of these "fake-real" films. To the writer of this article, I suggest you enter the abandoned USS Hornet docked in Alameda. Spend the whole night there and let me know if your opinion has changed.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 04, 2011 @ 8:53 am

Ghost Adventures is a compelling show and I can personally attest to the presence of paranormal entities. Articles like this are the reason I only pick up the SF Bay Guardian for the weed ads in the back!

"If these films are fake-real, then shows like Ghost Adventures, which follow regular people through actual abandoned prisons, sanitariums, and the like, are real-fake."

No. The authenticity of people's experiences and life-changing encounters with unexplained phenomena are the inspiration to many of these "fake-real" films. To the writer of this article, I suggest you enter the abandoned USS Hornet docked in Alameda. Spend the whole night there and let me know if your opinion has changed.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 04, 2011 @ 8:56 am

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