Alexandra Serio Talks TINGLE MONSTERS and ASMR Horror – Liz Whittemore interviews

Tingle Monsters is a short film that tackles online abuse in a new and frightening way through the gaze of horror and Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (aka ASMR), the popular YouTube phenomenon. An ASMR artist uses whispers into sensitive microphones or make intense noises by tapping on the microphone to cause a sensation often referred to as ‘tingles,’ a sort of euphoria. Alexandra Serio’ terrifying tale pulls from personal experience that reveal the gross culture of individuals hiding behind a keyboard.

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THE WRETCHED – Review by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas

Make no mistake, The Wretched is a strikingly polished feature debut that’s a thoroughly fun way to kill an hour and a half. A film that succeeds in its exploration of child abuse but is less accomplished in its broader gender politics, The Wretched is clearly driven by a spirit of nostalgia for older horror adventure films, it’s just a shame it let some pretty outdated clichés come along for the ride.

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MARY – Review by Liz Whittemore

Mary brings sea-faring scares but might be a sinking ship. Genuinely frightening visual moments and a fantastically effective score by The Newton Brothers add to the atmosphere of terror. What I was missing is the clarification between the siren legend and missing children specifically. Sirens tend to temp sailors to their death, while adding in an entirely separate curse aspect into the story feels a bit muddled.

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DEPRAVED – Review by Maitland McDonagh

Longtime independent Larry Fessenden, whose Glass Eye Pix has consistently supported young genre filmmakers, returns to a classic story he first tackled 25 years ago in No Telling, with a modern-day Frankenstein story that returns to one of the novel’s core themes: The dense and complex relationship between parents and children, however ambivalent the parents and however challenging the child. Fessenden pokes around some uncomfortable truths and the result is a discomfiting horror film for the social-media generation.

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KOKO-DI KOKO-DA – Review by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas

Harkening back to Nyholm’s earlier work, Koko-Di Koko-Da features a notable inclusion of the same shadow puppetry-like animation that in style and content recalls his 2009 short Dreams from the Woods. Bringing back some of that short’s key characters, the filmmaker again has proven his strengths lie in merging form in a simultaneously dark and playful manner with a sharp thematic edge.

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LUZ – Review by Maitland McDonagh

Luz is a sleepy, creepy slow burn that—like oh-so-many films about demonic possession—lives in the twilight zone of adolescent sexuality, a sleepy wasteland that breeds monsters of every shape and form. And like so many films whose origin lie in relationships between adolescent girls, Luz is rooted in the primordial horror of female sexuality that stops short of blaming female problems for all the troubles of the world.

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