Stuart Wright , July 31st, 2012 08:25
Event co-founder Alan Jones chats to Stuart Wright about this year's bountiful offerings. Poster by Graham Humphreys and Paul Johnstone
FrightFest is back and this year it's the unlucky for some 13th edition of London's annual 'Woodstock of gore' (copyright Guillermo Del Toro). The five-day bonanza of blood, guts and scares was created in 2000 by producer Paul McEvoy, journalist and broadcaster Alan Jones and distributor/booker Ian Rattray. During that time it has outgrown the Prince Charles Cinema (2000-2004) and Odeon West End (2005-2008) to finally settle down, for the time being, at the Empire in Leicester Square.
Other surprisingly recognisable names and faces at FrightFest include the Elijah Wood-starring remake of Joe Spinell and William Lustig's 1980 video nasty Maniac, plus Jennifer Lynch's purportedly unsettling Chained. Hailed by Jones as the "best film I've seen in years", the latter stars Vincent D'Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket, TV's Law & Order: Criminal Intent) as a cab-driving serial killer who raises a kidnapped child to be his sidekick.
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Monday, July 30, 2012
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Soooo, who is this Jennifer Lynch? Often referred to as 'the daughter of David Lynch', Jennifer has been through hell and back to carve her niche in a tough industry where making a name for oneself is easier said than done. Despite who your father is.
I chose the particular photo of Jennifer I posted above, from the many available on the web, because it struck a chord in me. I have sported many hairdos in my life, including the one above, and had the subsequent snickering from family, friends and strangers. Didn't matter, my need to express myself outweighed any criticism I was the recipient of. I saw the photo and recognized a kindred free spirit. Not to be outdone, Google her father and see his hairdos. The man has a mean head of hair.
Jennifer Chambers Lynch was born on April 7, 1968 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She is the daughter of David Lynch, filmmaker, TV director, visual artist, musician and actor, most notably known for 'Twin Peaks', 'Mullholland Drive', 'Blue Velvet', 'The Elephant Man' and 'Eraserhead'. Her mother is a painter. They separated in 1977, and her father is now married for the fourth time, he and his current wife are expecting a child. When she was six years old she began practicing Transcendental Meditation, influenced by her father who was introduced to the spiritual techniques in 1973 although being raised Presbyterian himself.
She attended school in Los Angeles and the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. As a teen, she had the role of a little girl in her father's film, 'Eraserhead', a cult classic film. Jennifer also worked as a production assistant for 'Blue Velvet' and wrote 'The Secret Diary of Laura Palmer' to accompany 'Twin Peaks', directed and created by her father, respectively.
At 19 years old, in 1993, she wrote the commissioned screenplay for 'Boxing Helena' that she also ended up directing. The subject matter raised the hackles of feminists far and wide, caused accusations of nepotism and involved a law suit with Kim Basinger who was at first slated to take the female lead.
Kim Basinger, on the advice of her agent, backed out of her verbal agreement to be in the film. Upon reconsideration, the personality of the character, the script written by someone so young and the graphic sex scenes made her uncomfortable. She was sued for breach of contract for $6.4 million, a dollar amount that the studio claimed it lost, and ended up costing Basinger $8.5 million. [LA TIMES]
Also considered for the part was Madonna, who walked away when Andrew Lloyd Weber caught wind of it and issued an ultimatum, 'You can't have Evita, Madonna, if you do Boxing Helena.' Madonna later wrote Jennifer Lynch a letter followed up by a personal phone call, crying. Say what you want about Madonna, and I personally like her, she paid back every dime knowing that she had not honored the contract and recognizing the time spent by production. [THE INDEPENDENT]
'Twin Peaks' star, Sherilyn Fenn eventually took the role.
'Boxing Helena' tells the tale of a lonely lovelorn surgeon obsessed with a woman named Helena, whom he previously had an affair with but cannot accept the reality she has moved on from him . As fate would have it, Helena is injured in a hit-and-run accident in front of his home. He kidnaps her and initially treats her, amputating both of her legs. After a time, he amputates her healthy arms as well. Limbless and held captive, Helena spends her time ridiculing Nick's shortcomings in an attempt to emasculate him becomes lonely herself and succumbs to his admiration of her.
Reality imitating her film, Jennifer herself was knocked down, age 19, and injured in a car accident that later progressed into debilitating spinal injuries, leaving her bedridden for a year after the birth of her daughter, Sydney. She had left Sydney's father and was a single parent. To alleviate the pain, Jennifer took up smoking weed, ignoring her condition until an alarmed doctor told her that her spine was being 'held together by a prayer'. She abstained from drugs and alcohol, had three spinal surgeries and endured a rigorous rehabilitation. [THE INDEPENDENT]
'Boxing Helena' came out when she was 24 years old receiving the worst reviews ever on record. It was nominated for a Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival but did not win. She dropped out of the public eye, to regroup and lick her wounds and did not return for 15 years when she came back with her offering of 'Surveillance'.
'Surveillance' took took top prize at the Festival de Cine de Stiges in October of 2008 [where her 'Chained' will screen this October] and one month later, Jennifer Lynch became the first woman to receive the New York City Horror Film Festival's 'Best Director' award.
Two years later, 2010, Jennifer returned with the film 'Hisss', about a man in the last stage of brain cancer who has only six months to live and decides to extract the 'Nagmani' from a shape-shifting snake who can take human form. 'George' captures a nag [male snake] to coax the female nagin to free her lover and obtain the nagmani by force. The nag is kept in a glass case where it is electrocuted and tortured eventually bringing the nagin to him as part of his plan. She is helped by a police inspector dealing with his own personal issues with an infertile wife that has caused a strain on their relationship. The nagin helps them and other women who have been victims of brutality by men, killing those men who captured her mate and the ones victimized. The inspector helps her to find our where her mate is located, at George's hideout, and once reunited the nagin and nag engage in sexual intimacy during which George tries to take her nagmani by disguising himself in a suit that hides his heat signature. At the same time he captures her, the inspector arrives, saving her. So angered by her now dead mate, she shape-shifts into half snake, half woman, and throws George into the same glass case that held her mate captive and electrocutes him. I won't give away the ending. [WIKIPEDIA]
The film was shot in India with a Bollywood actress as lead. The critics in Bollywood hammered the film for its 'bad script, careless directing, special effects that appeared more funny than eye-grabbing and the poor acting.' The box office in India labeled the film 'Disaster'. It screened at the Cannes Film Festival, where a grateful-to-be-able-to-walk Jennifer Lynch appeared on the red carpet with her daughter, Sydney in tow. 'Hisss' was also scheduled to premiere at the Montreal Festival du Noveau Cinema and the Gotham Screen Film Festival & Screenplay Contest in NYC but was pulled from both before they opened.
A documentary entitled 'Despite The Gods' chronicles the trials and tribulations of the filming of 'Hisss' and is set to be screened at the Fantasia International Film Festival along with the world premiere of 'Chained'.
Not to be discouraged, filming began on 'Rabbit' later changed to 'Chained' in July of 2011. Lending support was Julia Ormond who had previously worked with Jennifer in 'Surveillance'. In a surprising move to those who follow Vincent D'Onofrio closely, he agreed to portray the lead character of 'Bob', a cab-driving serial killer who kills Ormond's character 'Sarah' and kidnaps her son to become his protege'.
After horrific research in preparation and eventual filming of 'The Cell', Vincent has lamented about the ramifications--and nightmares he's experienced--that it cost him. So it was unexpected when in an interview on 'Good Things Utah', while promoting a charity event, he revealed that he was going to portray the 'darkest character I have ever done.' And, it was to be on his terms, filming to be done consecutively for the three days so as not to 'break character'.
Shane Daly, First AD, Jennifer Lynch, Director and Damian O'Donnell, Script Writer
Initial reports of the filming, though scant, were details of amazing techniques Vincent was coming up with to enhance his 'Bob'. A mouth piece was inserted to achieve a speech impediment and a shuffling of the feet was added. The entire filming was done in Lynch's beloved Canada and fitting that its world premiere will also be there.
Then the bad news came that the MPAA had slapped the film with an NC-17 rating that resulted in an attempt by Jennifer and her producer to have it overturned. It was not to be. The rating stands, as deemed by the MPAA for its 'explicit violence' for a scene that involves a throat-slashing.
'Chained' is also scheduled to be screened at the 'Film4 Frightfest in the UK and 'Fantasy Filmfest' in Germany in August and .'Stiges' in Catalonia in October.
I can't for the life of me figure out why? Maybe it's because no one wants to take the risk on a Jennifer Lynch film, or thoughts that the film will do poorly in a theatrical release because of the deleted scene or maybe the subject matter is 'too sensitive'. Maybe all.
In a recent interview, 'Observations: Keep it in the family: the dark visions of Jennifer Lynch', Jennifer Lynch shared her thoughts about 'Chained'.
“The subject matter is upsetting, no doubt about it. It should be. It is a horrible thing, violence,” says Lynch. “When the project first came to me I was not 'turned on'.”
Instead, Lynch wanted to create a study of “how monsters are made”. “In my mind, real-life monsters are born of wounds: of sorrows. Of pains not spoken or healed. I wanted to promote a dialogue about child abuse. I did not want to excuse terrible acts, but to bring the human monster to light.”
What real-life events or films influenced her? “Everything I have ever seen or done influenced me,” she says. “Truly. The love I was given. The fears I had and still have. The questions I ask each day. All of them were part of my telling this story.”
There have been some hints/rumors of a limited theatrical release and I hope it's true. I hope it makes it to the big screen in some lucky people's cities. If only for the sake of an actor of Vincent D'Onofrio's calibre, movie magic and acting brilliance to be truly appreciated on a big ass screen. You can save the DVD to cut your lunch meat.
Jennifer Lynch is currently in pre-production for 'A Fall From Grace'.
Good luck at the festivals, Jennifer, I think you've got a good one here. And, if I could say one thing to you, always stay true to yourself despite what the others may think or say. At the end of the day, you only have yourself to answer to and not the others who should find themselves having 'no place at the in(n).'
Oh, in case some of the details of the movies have left you unsettled, here's a photo sent to me from Marian of two pups whose mother was rescued in the nick of time...she was in labor!
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
FILM THE HAMPTONS
OSCAR WINNERS AND ESTEEMED FINE ARTISTS SHOWCASE DURING HAMPTONS WORLD PEACE INITIATIVE
(JULY 20, 2012) Hamptons World Peace Initiative is pleased to announce
the program line up for August 3-5th 2012, at Southampton Inn, in
Southampton New York. The initiative consists of Artisan Festival
International with its World Cinema Festival, and Renaissance Art Fair
branches. The evening festivities will comprise of fashion fused with
music in addition to the film and fine art. “Bridging the gap of
cultural diversity is imperative to creating social change in an
environment where one individual can make a significant impact. We all
have the gift to manifest, create and aid in peace relations. By
bringing individuals together from all walks of life, to focus on
enjoying culture through an appreciation of the arts, we can create
the needed dialogue for change and cross cultural acceptance. Some of
the films showcased are not necessarily a promotion of peace: thus the
goal is to congregate and explore dialogue. Where there is conflict we
must resolve, and agree to differ,” stated multi-media talent Princess
Angelique Monét, AFI World Peace Initiative founder and Executive
ARTISAN FESTIVAL INTERNATIONAL (World Cinema Festival)
Over 20 films from around the world will have world premieres or be
featured during Artisan Festival International (World Cinema
Festival). Spotlighted films are:
Bryce Dallas Howard’s directorial debut ‘When You Find Me,” produced
by her father Ron Howard for Canon C300. (Short)
“Crackers” by Gregory Principato Starring Vincent d’Onofrio (Men In
Black, Brooklyn’s Finest), Oscar and Emmy nominated Brenda Vaccaro,
Anthony Laciura (Boardwalk Empire) (Short)
“Voice Of Love” by Gary Keys starring Whitney Houston, Dionne Warwick,
Cissy Houston, Sweet Inspirations, The Drinkard Singers, Roberta
Flack, Gary Houston, and the Drinkard Singers II,
Veteran Filmmaker Melvin Van Peebles scores sound track for “Death is
No Escape,” by Franklyn Strachan
Pulitzer Prize Nominee Kevin McKiernan and Oscar winner Haskell Wexler
(Medium Cool, Latino) “Bringing King to China,”
Fela Anikulapo’s historic visit to NY in the mid 80′s “FelaNYC” by Jaheed Ashley
“Ante,” by Emilio Rosa starring Angel Salazar(Scarface), Jaime
Tirelli(Girl Fight, Carlito’s Way)
“Pay It Forward” by Frank M. Calo, a reality show that showcases real
events of specific people or organizations that go unnoticed. (Reality
In addition to the film line up, workshops and panel discussions will
- Technology, Culture and Connectivity in a Digital Environment
- Booking the part
- How children can be successful in the entertainment business
- Making Dreams Reality
- Industry tastemakers provide a talk back and answer audience
For ticket prices and general information, please visit,
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Sherman Alexander Hemsley was born on February 1, 1938 in South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is most noted as portraying the character of 'George Jefferson' on 'All In The Family'. Sherman was raised by a single mother who worked as a factory worker. He dropped out of school to join the Air Force and served four years. Once discharged from the Air Force, Sherman began work at the Post Office while he attended acting school at night. He moved to New York and did the same thing, working for the Post Office while continuing his studies in acting at night. Sherman performed mainly with productions of plays and worked with various groups. During that time, Norman Lear called him to play the role of 'George Jefferson' but Sherman did not want to leave the current theatre role he had. Norman Lear told him he would keep the role open for him and two years later Sherman joined the cast for what would be his most memorable association. The success of the teaming of Isabel Sanford and Sherman Hemsley as husband and wife got them their own spinoff in 'The Jeffersons'. In reality, Isabel was 20 years older than Hemsley but it did not matter. The audience accepted them as a credible match. After the cancellation of 'The Jefferson's, Sherman teamed up with original cast members for a Broadway production of the show. He then joined the cast of 'Amen' playing an 'unscrupulous' church deacon. In the past decade, Sherman appeared in guest spots on different shows with his fellow cast member, Isabel Sanford. They are also seen together in different commercials and enjoyed occasional appearances until Isabel fell ill and passed away in 2004. Little know fact is that Sherman was a bit of a 1970's progressive rock band fan. He especially enjoyed the works of Yes, Gentle Giant and Nektar. In 1999, he collaborated with Yes founder Jon Anderson for an album that was never released. Today, Sherman Hemsley passed away of natural causes at this home in El Paso, Texas. He was 74 years old. Find the connection!
From the writer/director of BOXING HELENA From the mind of writer/director Jennifer Lynch comes the shocker that panicked ratings boards and stunned audiences worldwide: When he was 9 years old Tim and his mother were abducted by taxi-driving serial killer Bob (an intensely disturbing performance by Vincent D'Onofrio). Tim's mother was murdered. Tim was kept as a chained slave forced to bury the bodies of young women Bob drags home and keep scrapbooks of the crimes. Now a teenager Tim (Eamon Farren) and Bob share a depraved father/son/prot+ªg+ª relationship. But who will ultimately sever the bond between 'family' and unimaginable horror? Jake Weber ("Medium") Evan Bird ("The Killing") and Julia Ormond (THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON "Mad Men") co-star in what critics are calling one of the most controversial and uncompromising thrillers of our time.
- Number of discs: 1
- Rated: R (Restricted)
- Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
- DVD Release Date: October 2, 2012
Let me make this real clear...this is the Blu-ray version. You get one disc in that format. Do not confuse it with the Bonus Blu-ray and DVD combo pack.
Monday, July 23, 2012
A twisted tale from the director of
Boxing Helena and Surveillance
ANCHOR BAY FILMS PRESENTS
A FILM BY JENNIFER LYNCH
Blu-ray™Combo Pack and DVD To Include Unrated Deleted Scene;
Unfettered Starting October 2nd
Beverly Hills, CA – Perhaps the most terrifying human relationship is the one between a serial killer and his target. But what if it starts that way, and becomes something...more? From the visionary mind of director Jennifer Lynch (Boxing Helena, Surveillance, Hisss) comes the dark fable Chained, coming to Blu-ray™ Combo Pack and DVD October 2nd from Anchor Bay Films.
'With a stellar cast including Vincent D’Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket, Men In Black, “Law and Order: Criminal Intent”), Gina Phillips (Jeepers Creepers, “Ally McBeal”) Conor Leslie (“90210”), Evan Bird (“The Killing”), with Jake Weber (Dawn of the Dead, “Medium”) and Julia Ormand (My Week With Marilyn, “Mad Men,” The Curious Case of Benjamin Button), Chained is an unforgettable ride into the darkness that can reside in the human heart – no matter what your age. The Chained Blu-ray™ Combo Pack and DVD also includes, as a bonus feature, the scene that prompted the MPAA give the film an NC-17 rating! SRP is $26.98 for the DVD, and $29.99 for the Blu-ray™ Combo Pack. Pre-book is September 5th.
Coming home from a routine trip to the movies, eight-year-old Tim (Bird) and his mother, Sarah (Ormond) are picked up by a psychopathic cab driver named Bob (D’Onofrio). It ends up being their last ride together. Bob murders the young boy’s mother and keeps Tim as his unwilling protégée, making him clean up the mess following each murder he commits. After a couple of aborted escape attempts, Bob chains Tim – now renamed Rabbit -- allowing just enough length to move freely within the house. As the years pass, Bob starts instructing Rabbit, teaching him anatomy and human behavior. Now a teenager, Rabbit (Eamon Farren, X: Night of Vengeance) is slowly being pressed by Bob to start his own homicidal spree. Slowly but surely, he must soon choose whether to follow in Bob’s serial killer footsteps or make one final, desperate attempt to break free...
Bonus features on Chained Blu-ray™ and DVD include feature-length audio commentary by writer/director Jennifer Lynch and actor Vincent D’Onofrio; the alternated unrated version of “Mary’s Murder;” and the original theatrical trailer.
Saturday, July 21, 2012
Read more: http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20120721/coney-island/law-order-star-cleans-up-at-coney-island-sand-sculpture-contest#ixzz21Ia3SmIv
CONEY ISLAND — He didn't bring a search warrant for his weekend exploits, but actor Vincent D'Onofrio, who plays a TV detective, tore up the beach in Brooklyn anyway.
With no cameras rolling, he put on quite a show in his civilian clothes — or bathing suit — and with his family won first-prize in Coney Island's Sand Sculpture contest.
It was a perfect beach day, and sand castles abounded, but the serious sculptors arrived at noon to begin shaping their giant mounds of sand into something a bit greater.
By 2:45 p.m., as the judges began to make their rounds, the stretch of beach between West 10th and West 12th streets along the boardwalk was decorated with larger-than-life sea turtles, mermaids and palatial kingdom estates.
Curious beachgoers watched from Riegelmann Boardwalk or strolled between the artists at work. Some looked fearful of taking an errant step into the delicate works-in-progress.
Judges handed out awards in five categories, child alone, adult alone, group of adults, group of children and mixed groups.
D'Onofrio and his 8-member family took home the first prize in the 'mixed' category, for an elaborate treasure chest that was guarded by sand skeletons, and decorated with gold coins.
"We love pirates!" said a Carin van der Donk, a former model and D'Onofrio's wife, as they sculpted.
Read more: http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20120721/coney-island/law-order-star-cleans-up-at-coney-island-sand-sculpture-contest#ixzz21Ia3SmIv
Friday, July 20, 2012
Thoughts and prayers to those involved with the tragedy in CO. The guns used were bought at Gander Mountain. Don't post me your hate...I am not against people owning guns but I question the purpose of owning and being able to purchase high capacity munitions.