Punishment Park (1971) - News Poster

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‘Carnage Park’ DVD Review

Stars: Ashley Bell, Pat Healy, James Landry Hébert, Michael Villar, Bob Bancroft, Larry Fessenden, Graham Skipper, Darby Stanchfield, Alan Ruck | Written and Directed by Mickey Keating

Sometimes I’m sure people think I’m just being contrary in my reviews – there are films I like that Many don’t (if you remember the first Frightfest I covered in 2009 you’ll know what I’m talking about); and there are films that are critically acclaimed, be it by other movie blogs, big name film critics, whomever, that just don’t resonate with me. One such film was Mickey Keating’s previous film Pod. However, not to be put off by one bad experience, and thanks to good word of mouth I decided to give his latest film, Carnage Park, a go…

Carnage Park sees two criminals rob a bank and go on the run. However things don’t go to plan
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

On Mubi / Off #1: "Terminal Island" & "Spectre"

  • MUBI
The parameters, mutually agreed upon by my editor Danny Kasman and myself, are these: A bi-weekly (every two weeks) column, entitled "On Mubi / Off," covering two films—one currently available on the Mubi streaming platform in the United States, the other screening offsite (in theaters, on VOD, Blu-ray/DVD, etc). The movies may share some similarities in approach, execution and theme, or they may not. Mostly, my own interests and curiosity will dictate what films are covered and in what way, and I hope you'll find the prose, the pairings, and/or the analysis compelling enough to follow along.On MUBITerminal Island (Stephanie Rothman, 1973)Sight unseen, I thought Stephanie Rothman's 1973 exploitation cheapie Terminal Island would make for a good inaugural article lead-off—something Z-grade disreputable to complement the A-level sleaze (not necessarily a criticism) of the other movie covered in this column. (We'll get to you momentarily, Mr. Bond.
See full article at MUBI »

Turkey Shoot

Brian Trenchard-Smith's outrageous futuristic gore-fest imagines an Australian extermination camp run by the sadistic Michael Craig and Roger Ward, where jaded rich folk come to hunt human prey. The leading targets for this week's jaunt are Steve Railsback and Olivia Hussey. It is snarky? Is it subversive? An alternate title was Blood Camp Thatcher! Turkey Shoot Blu-ray Severin Films 1982 / Color / 2:35 widescreen / 93 80 min. / Escape 2000, Blood Camp Thatcher / Street Date September 22, 2015 / 24.98 Starring Steve Railsback, Olivia Hussey, Michael Craig, Carmen Duncan, Noel Ferrier, Lynda Stoner, Roger Ward, Michael Petrovitch, Gus Mercurio, John Ley. Cinematography John McLean Film Editor Alan Lake Original Music Brian May Special Effects John Stears Second Unit Director / Executive Producer David Hemmings Written byJon George, Neill Hicks, George Schenck, Robert Williams, David Lawrence Produced by William Fayman, Antony I. Ginnane Directed by Brian Trenchard-Smith

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson

Who cannot appreciate a movie that carries the alternate title Blood Camp Thatcher?
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

‘Punishment Park’ a stark reminder of how little has changed in world affairs since it emerged in 1971

  • SoundOnSight
Punishment Park

Written and directed by Peter Watkins

1971, USA

Images of the heavy-handed police response to protests of the fatal shooting of unarmed Missouri teenager Michael Brown have re-ignited discussion about the increasing militarization of U.S. police forces.

They are also reminiscent of this indelible image from Punishment Park, a powerful faux documentary that brought police militarization to its extreme but inevitable conclusion over 40 years ago.

While hardware is a large part of the Ferguson story, Punishment Park’s $95,000 budget (per the original press kit, which is included with a 2005 DVD release) perhaps precluded director Peter Watkins from equipping the cast with anything quite as threatening, but the film’s impacted is hardly blunted. The press kit insists “Punishment Park takes place tomorrow, yesterday or five years from now. It is also happening today.” And this can still be said of it.

Punishment Park is not only a prescient
See full article at SoundOnSight »

‘Punishment Park’ Blu-ray Review (Masters of Cinema)

Stars: Patrick Boland, Kent Foreman, Carmen Argenziano, Luke Johnson, Katherine Quittner, Scott Turner, Stan Armsted, Mary Ellen Kleinhall | Written and Directed by Peter Watkins

“Under the provision of Title 2 of the 1950 Internal Security Act, also known as the McCarran Act, the President of the United States of America is still authorized, without further approval by Congress to determine an event of insurrection within the United States and to declare the existence of an “internal security emergency”. The President is then authorized to apprehend and detain each person as to whom there is reasonable ground to believe probably will engage in certain future acts of sabotage. Persons apprehended shall be given a hearing, without right of bail, without the necessity of evidence and shall then be confined to places of detention.”

Peter Watkins, a British filmmaker who would work for the BBC in the 1960’s before finally directing Punishment Park in
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

In Defence Of... Found Footage, the unfairly maligned horror subgenre

In Defence Of... Found Footage, the unfairly maligned horror subgenre
Found footage films get a bad rap - and worse reviews. But the genre combines the vitality of punk rock with the reach of a video viral, and it has earned, if not respectability, then at least a respectful reappraisal. Some found footage (hereafter Ff) films are, admittedly, unwatchable (see The Devil Inside or, better, don't). But others, such as recent West Country-set religious chiller The Borderlands, or Bobcat Goldthwait's creepy Bigfoot hunt Willow Creek (out on May 2), are closer to unmissable.

Beyond an ominous title card, Ff films require little backstory, and the genre has only a brief history of its own. An uncompromising, hand-over-the-camera-lens look at totalitarianism in Vietnam-era America, Peter Watkins' 1971 mock-doc Punishment Park is considered Ff's chief forebear. Ruggiero Deodato's still-troubling Cannibal Holocaust (1979), however, is the most striking early archetype. Following a gonzo film crew into tribal Amazonia, it puts video-nasty atrocities through a film-school filter,
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Camerimage to honour John Turturro

  • ScreenDaily
Camerimage to honour John Turturro
Cinematography festival will also honour Avatar production designer Rick Carter and documentary cinematographer Joan Churchill.

Camerimage, the International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography (Nov 16-23), is to hand honourary awards to John Turturro, Rick Carter and Joan Churchill.

Turturro, best known for roles in O Brother, Where Art Thou? and the Transformers franchise, will be presented with the festival’s Special Award to Actor-Director at a ceremony in Bydgoszcz, Poland.

A regular collaborator with the Coen brothers, Turturro most recently wrote and directed comedy Fading Gigolo, which will receive its Polish premiere at the festival.

Carter, who won Oscars for his work on Lincoln and Avatar and received nominations for Forrest Gump and War Horse, will receive Camerimage’s Production Designer with Unique Visual Sensitivity Award.

The production designer and art director also boasts credits including Amistad,A.I. Artificial Intelligence, Cast Away, War of the Worlds, What Lies Beneath, Jurassic Park, and Back to the Future Part II
See full article at ScreenDaily »

After Dark's Ritual Heads Home Right Before the New Year

A part of After Dark Films' second series of After Dark Originals, the satanic flick Ritual has just been set for a December 31st release on both DVD and digital platforms. Learn all about it here!

From the Press Release

After Dark Films proudly announces the sixth film in its After Dark Originals 2 series (ADO2), Ritual, a horrific tale that craftily brings you into the world of sadistic satanic rituals.

Ritual marks the feature film debut of director and writer Mickey Keating. It stars Lisa Marie Summerscales (Water for Elephants), Dean Cates (You, Only Better), and Derek Phillips (42, "Friday Night Lights").

"There is a stark and lonely reality to these characters that makes the film so terrifying. We are excited to add this to our line-up." - Stephanie Caleb.

"Ritual is a love letter to pulpy 1970s horror films like Race With the Devil, Punishment Park, and Hardcore. I've
See full article at Dread Central »

Horror ‘Ritual’ Poster Ready To Check-In

Here in the UK we don’t have much need for motels. We’re just not big enough. But having watched my fair share of films and TV shows, I gather they are places where murder and unpleasant goings on occur. I don’t know why Obama doesn’t just shut them down. Ritual, a film from Mickey Keating, sees a man arrive at a motel after his estranged wife calls him for help. It appears she’s killed a man connected to a cult, and you can bet your bottom dollar there’s going to be reprisals.

I really like this poster, and were it on the cover of a DVD, I would pick it up without a second thought. Skulls and candles are always great ingredients when concocting a creepy main course, but that word “Motel” is just loaded with sinister spine-tingling spookiness.

Keating speaks of his influences and love of the project,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

After Dark Films' Official Poster for Ritual Revealed...

After Dark Films has revealed the one-sheet for Ritual, the latest film to join the After Dark Originals 2 series.

Ritual is a horrific tale that craftily brings you into the world of sadistic satanic rituals; it marks the first feature debut for director and writer by Mickey Keating, starring Lisa Marie Summerscales, Dean Cates, and Derek Phillips.

"Ritual is a love letter to pulpy 1970s horror films like Race With The Devil, Punishment Park, and Hardcore. I've loved the works of After Dark Films since their first Horrorfest broke onto the scene and I couldn't be more excited that my movie found a home with them," says Keating.  Head inside for a larger look at the one-sheet!

Read more...
See full article at shocktillyoudrop »

This week's new film events

London Spanish Film Festival

This year's festival includes a separate focus on Catalan cinema, just weeks after Catalans came out in droves to campaign for independence. Partisan or not, Spanish cinema still looks to be in decent shape. There are accessible commercial movies here – Los Pelayo is a sort of Mallorcan Ocean's Eleven; A Game Of Werewolves is a Galician horror. But there's also more pensive cinema, such as Los Pasos Dobles, a Mali-set meditation on art and memory.

Ciné Lumière, SW7, Fri to 10 Oct

Safar: A Journey Through Popular Arab Cinema, London

Call yourself a global cinema aficionado? If names like Soad Hosny or Adel Imam mean nothing to you, you're still a few regions short of all-encompassing movie omnipotence. So here's the place to quickly fill that gap. Despite the title, what we're mostly talking about here is Egyptian cinema – the biggest player in the region. Hosny, who
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

This Week In DVD: January 24th

Welcome to This Week in DVD! Lots of titles hitting shelves today, and we’re covering nineteen of them below. High profiles like Real Steel and Paranormal Activity 3 are releasing alongside indies like The Woman and Beware the Gonzo. There’s also several older titles worth checking out including Punishment Park, The Arena with Pam Grier and a Criterion release of Godzilla. As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. The Whistleblower A female cop (Rachel Weisz) from the Midwest takes a temporary but high paid job as a Un peacekeeper in Bosnia and discovers despicable crimes and criminals in her midst. Her instinct as a cop is to help people and bring the guilty to justice, but the systematic corruption may be too widespread and unbeatable. Weisz gives a strong and emotional performance, and the film pulls no punches in its exploration of the sex trafficking trade that
See full article at FilmSchoolRejects »

Blu-ray Review: Punishment Park – A Timely Re-Release

Rating:

There is a period in American cinema history commonly referred to as the ‘New Hollywood’ era, in which filmmakers sought to undermine the prevailing conservative ideology of Nixon’s America from within the studio system itself. American directors such as Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, Brian De Palma, Dennis Hopper and Robert Altman are usually linked to such films. While they remain interesting films today, their power – or perceived radicalism – is arguably diminished through the sands of time. One film from this period, which is largely unseen, has refused to allow the corrosive passing of time liquidate its message. Punishment Park was stubbornly ignored by the Hollywood studio system, was written and directed by an Oscar-winning Englishman – Peter Watkins – and is undoubtedly one of the most persuasive and revolutionary films from the Vietnam period of American history. The film is as hauntingly relevant and prescient today as it was then.
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

This week's new DVD & Blu-ray

Punishment Park

When this film was released in 1971, the events that inspired it (such as the Kent State shootings and the Vietnam war) were still fresh in the audience's minds.

When it arrived on DVD a few years back, it was the incarcerations at Guantánamo Bay that drew obvious comparisons. It's only fitting that this latest release, on Blu-ray (and DVD again) arrives soon after rioting and general unrest in Egypt, London, America and, sadly, plenty of other locations. Highly influential director Peter Watkins again uses the documentary style he developed with earlier classics The War Game and Culloden to great effect. A collection of student, arty types and suspicious-looking longhairs are paraded in front of a community tribunal (more a kangaroo court) for various crimes against society (some no more than daring to question the status quo). They are told they can have their long prison sentences commuted to
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Daily Briefing. Senses of Cinema's 2011 World Poll

  • MUBI
It's an annual event as well as a browse that could suck up an entire weekend: Senses of Cinema's worldwide poll of… well, they're not all critics, so let's just call them friends of cinema. You'll want to scroll up and down the whole thing, but take a look, too, at the best of 2011 according to Notebook editor Daniel Kasman and contributors Celluloid Liberation Front, Christoph Huber, Olaf Möller and Dan Sallitt as well as a major presence here in the Forum and elsewhere, David Ehrenstein.

London. This is the year we'll be seeing the results of Sight & Sound's poll of more friends of cinema regarding the greatest films of all time. It happens only once every ten years and in the magazine's pages, Graham Fuller argues a mighty case for the return of Jean Vigo's L'Atalante (1934) to the top ten. The film's opening today for an extended run at BFI Southbank,
See full article at MUBI »

Win: Punishment Park On Blu-ray, We Have 3 Copies To Give Away

Punishment Park (Masters of Cinema) is to be released in the UK in a new Dual Format Blu-ray + DVD edition on 23 January 2012. We have three copies of the Blu-ray to give away.

Both controversial and relentless in its depiction of suppression and brutality, Punishment Park was heavily attacked by the mainstream press and permitted only the barest of releases in 1971. However, like Haskell Wexler’s Medium Cool (1969) and Robert Kramer’s Ice (1969), Peter Watkins’ film has established itself as one of the key, yet rarely seen, radical films of the late 1960s/early 1970s. Giving voice to the disaffected youth of America that had lived through the campus riots at Berkeley, the trial of the Chicago Seven and who were witnessing the escalation of the Vietnam War, Punishment Park was named by Rolling Stone as one of their top ten films of 1971 and has earned many admirers in the four decades since its release.
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

Gareth Edwards interview: directing Monsters, Werner Herzog, Godzilla, Monsters 2 and more

As the mighty Monsters arrives on DVD and Blu-ray, we caught up with director Gareth Edwards for a chat about filmmaking, mockumentaries and Godzilla

One of last year's very best sci-fi movies, Monsters gained a great deal of attention, thanks to its stunning acting, direction and special effects. On a shoestring budget, filmmaker Gareth Edwards acted as writer, director and effects creator, with actors Whitney Able and Scoot McNairy largely improvising their dialogue on location in Guatemala.

The result was a low key, tender sci-fi drama, a touching journey through a near-future Central America that has become a war zone, with the Us army engaged in a perpetual war against vast, octopus-like creatures from outer space.

Monsters' critical acclaim has propelled Edwards into the movie industry's attention, and over the past few months, he's been developing a sci-fi project with Russian filmmaker, Timur Bekmambetov, and most excitingly, developing a
See full article at Den of Geek »

This week's new film events

Take One Action, Edinburgh & Glasgow

Want to save the world but not sure where to start? This festival should at least give you some pointers, if not rouse you into action. Its mission is to bring together audiences, film-makers and activists and to highlight pressing global issues through film. There's no shortage of material. Big issues such as global warming, hunger, the oil industry and Israel-Palestine are well covered in fiction and documentary, but it's not necessarily all bad news. There are inspirational stories, such as Persona Non Grata, about a crusader for slum justice in Venezuela, or classic doc Powaqqatsi with a live score, and even a Namibian HIV drama, in which the audience decides the ending.

Filmhouse, Edinburgh & Glasgow Film Theatre, Thu to 5 Oct; visit takeoneaction.org.uk

Branchage Film Festival, Jersey

There aren't that many cinemas on Jersey, but this festival doesn't need them anyway. When it
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

FrightFest 2010 Interview: Eli Roth

In the second part of the two interviews I was invited to take part in for the promotion of The Last Exorcism, I met the film’s producer, Eli Roth. Writer, director and sometime actor, Roth is laid back (both figuratively and quite literally), sharply dressed and surprisingly handsome in person. As opposed to director Daniel Stamm’s enthusiastic joy for talking about his movie, Roth is more reserved, although clearly in his element – the filmmaker evidently knows not only how to direct a scene but also an interview. He feeds us information at his own pace, casually displays his encyclopaedic knowledge of horror and sets himself up nicely for some witty jokes. Roth was a compelling orator, as is hopefully evident below.

I was watching your Carson Daly interview this morning and in that you were saying that the reason you produced as well as directed your first couple
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

Close-Up Blu Ray Review

  • FilmJunk
Close-Up Directed by: Abbas Kiarostami Written by: Abbas Kiarostami Starring: Hosein Sabzian, Hassan Farazmand, Mehrdad Ahankhah Abbas Kiarostami's 1990 docudrama Close-Up completely buries the defining line between documentary and drama. It's a subversive piece of meta filmmaking that comments on the value of art and cinema through the trial of one overzealous man whose desire to live vicariously through the films -- and filmmaker's -- he loves drove him to deception. The opening ten minutes of Close-Up manages to lay out the entire plot of the film while still keeping the audience completely in the dark. Two dashboard mounted cameras capture a taxi ride -- in what seems to be real time -- as a journalist and two police officers arrive at the home of an upper-class family to arrest a man who's been fraudulently impersonating Iranian filmmaker Mohsen Makhmalbaf. We slowly learn that the suspect, Hosein Sabzian, had told the family he was Makhmalbaf,
See full article at FilmJunk »
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