Five Fingers for Marseilles
Five Fingers for Marseilles

This year’s 41st Portland International Film Festival will once again include the popular, boundary pushing fare that constitutes the PIFF After Dark program, showcasing late night movies like Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani’s (Amer, The Strange Color of Your Body’s Tears) giallo-inflected, spaghetti western Let the Corpses Tan, Joseph Kahn’s (Torque) caustic, rap battle comedy Bodied, Can Evrenol’s (Baskin) riff on 1970s Italian horror Housewife, Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead’s (Spring) looping, sci-fi thriller The Endless, Lukas Figelfeld’s folk-horror tale Hagazussa: A Heathen’s Curse, and Michael Matthews’ western set in South Africa Five Fingers for Marseilles.

All PIFF After Dark at PIFF 41 screenings are at the Northwest Film Center’s Whitsell Auditorium, located in the Portland Art Museum (1219 SW Park Ave.)

2018 PIFF After Dark

Bodied (Dir. Joseph Kahn) – United States
A UC Berkeley grad student whose thesis explores the use of racial slurs in rap battles finds himself drawn into the ring in this Eminem-produced feature directed by hip-hop/pop music video director Joseph Kahn and written by battle rap legend Alex “Kid Twist” Larsen. Winner of the Midnight Madness Audience Award at the Toronto International Film Festival, “Bodied is pure zany fun disguised as a pure provocation, and sometimes vice versa, mainly because any attempt to characterize its narrative as problematic proves its point.”—IndieWire. (120 mins.)

Tickle Monster (Dir. Remi Weekes) – United Kingdom
A wannabe rapper doesn’t believe his girlfriend’s claim that her apartment is home to a tickle monster. (4 mins.)

Let the Corpses Tan (Dir. Hélène Cattet, Bruno Forzani) – France/Belgium
A gang of ne’er-do-wells rob an armored truck, getting away with the gold bars. Hiding out, trouble ensues when unexpected guests AND the cops arrive, resulting in epic and complexly staged action. Cattet and Forzani (Amer, The Strange Colour of Your Body’s Tears) continue to channel their love of giallo cinema, but stretch in new directions, gloriously borrowing from spaghetti Westerns and Italian crime films. “Boiled down to a blurb, it’s like Alejandro Jodorowsky (El Topo) directed Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire.”—Birth. Movies. Death. (90 mins.)

Manila Death Squad (Dir. Dean Colin Marcial) – United States/Philippines
A journalist embeds herself with a violent vigilante group leader during the Philippine drug war. (13 mins.)

Housewife (Dir. Can Evrenol) – Turkey
A woman who experienced a tragic loss as a child comes under the spell of a mysterious and charismatic cult leader. Pivoting (mostly) from the H.P. Lovecraft and Anton Levay influences of his debut film (Baskin), Evrenol instead projects a mélange of cosmic horror and giallo influences mixed with a 1980s European soft-core production aesthetic. “Evrenol shows that he’s more than a one-trick pony. Housewife is an intriguing and strangely sensual tale of the descent into madness.”—The Hollywood News. (82 mins.)

Setaceous (Dir. Tel Benjamin) – Australia
A neighborhood is terrorized by a car alarm in the dead of the night. (11 mins.)

Five Fingers for Marseilles (Dir. Michael Matthews) – South Africa
A recent parolee returns to his hometown, vowing to turn his back on his criminal ways. Before long he finds that some of his friends from the Apartheid era have internalized and recreated the tyranny they struggled against. “Director Michael Matthews and scripter Sean Drummond skillfully employ recycled genre elements to enhance the mythic qualities of their slow-burn narrative and reinforce the underlying sense that their archetypical characters are fulfilling destinies as inescapable as the fates that might befall major players in a conventional Wild West saga.”—Variety. (120 mins.)

Catherine (Dir. Britt Raes) – Belgium
An animated look into the origins of a crazy cat lady. (10 mins.)

Hagazussa: A Heathen’s Curse (Dir. Lukas Feigelfeld) – Austria/Germany
In a small Austrian mountain village in the 15th century, a single mother is ostracized by the other residents, who claim she is a witch. With his debut feature, director Lukas Feigelfeld has constructed a folk-horror tale that hews more closely to a black metal aesthetic than any other film in recent memory. “It looks and feels far more substantial than most indie debuts, confidently bending genre rules with its minimalist dialogue and hallucinatory plot, which owes more to David Lynch or Lars Von Trier than to more orthodox horror.”—Hollywood Reporter. (102 mins.)

Möbius (Dir. Sam Kuhn) – United States/Canada
Following the death of her true love, a high school poet describes what led her there in this highly textured, neo-noir short film. (15 mins.)

The Endless (Dir. Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead) – United States
After receiving a cryptic video in the mail, two brothers return to the Southern California cult they left a decade ago. They discover that no one they left behind has aged, and the event that the cult’s doctrine foretold has yet to happen. The directors make the most of the sci-fi tropes at the center of their micro-budget film, which has more in common with My Dinner With Andre and Primer than it does with the Hollywood-produced spectacles that pass for science fiction today. “The Endless isn’t just terrific—it’s poised to be that breakout genre hit that It Follows and The Babadook were.”—Slash Film. (111 mins.) (111 mins.)

Zarr-Dos (Dir. Bart Wasem) – Switzerland
Two giant heads blow shit up. (7 mins.)

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