MOVIE: MONSTER SEAFOOD WARS
DIRECTOR: MINORU KAWASAKI

It was quite the coincidence that Fantasia 2020 would have a big monster kaiju picture, because I just finished my Godzilla Criterion Collection, and I’ve been obsessed with these kinds of movies. Monster Seafood Wars is a bit too silly at times, but these types of movies are always that way, especially if they are in the spirit of the Toho Godzilla films. Minoru Kawasaki does a nice job of finding the independent spirit of Fantasia with a microbudget picture, entirely focused on putting a stop to three big fish from destroying Japan. Yuta drops a squid, an octopus, and a crab he’s delivering into a river and the results are monstrous. Now it is up to the Seafood Monster Attack Team to take them down, but finding out how is the problem. It has a bit of the spirit of a 70’s Godzilla picture, mixed with the current technology of YouTube videos and video games, so it has enough for you to enjoy. I was a bit annoyed with the diverted battle for culinary greatness, using the monsters to feed the world, but it’s not always easy making a kaiju movie work.
FOR TICKET INFO CLICK HERE

MOVIE: THE COLUMNIST
DIRECTOR: IVO VAN AART

In 2020 there is no better justice than a journalist getting even with the online trolls. When creating a reversed fantasy satire, where someone is able to get back at those who were mean to them, you need to have the right touch. And The Columnist has that. It begins with lead Katja Herbers- a rising star for sure - as Femke Boot, an editorial columnist for a newspaper and political commentator, who has the joy of seeing the hateful comments on her work. As one character tells her, “never read the comments”, but for Femke the hatred has gone too far. She takes things into her hands and decides to kill people who have expressed that hatred. What makes The Columnist work so well is how Femke balances being a mother, writing, and her love life, while also finding happiness in getting back at the haters. Director Ivo van Aart has a nice connection with why film critics will love this movie and he also follows Herbers who has an attitude and charisma that makes it one of the best movies at Fantasia this year. It just might be my favorite. Long story short, don’t piss off a journalist. FOR TICKET INFO CLICK HERE

MOVIE: CLAPBOARD JUNGLE: SURVIVING THE INDEPENDENT FILM BUSINESS
DIRECTOR: JUSTIN MCCONNELL

A documentary that caught me by surprise at Fantasia was Clapboard Jungle. It’s not necessarily the movie for everyone, but it is the perfect movie for anyone in the industry of movie making. The common filmgoer might not care much, but Clapboard Jungle is an important movie for anyone in this industry, including yours truly. I was fascinated with director Justin McConnell, who documents his struggle of getting his films funded, finding the right screenplay, the hustle, the connections, and the crippling pain of defeat. He balances his own personal struggles with talking head interviews. We see all levels of people trying to make movies: Oscar winning directors: Guillermo del Toro, cult film directors: Larry Cohen, and independent darlings such as Aaron Moorehead and Justin Benson. It’s both a sad and therapeutic film, reminding us that being an artist is an extremely painful process, and sometimes rewarding. Above it all, it’s a reminder that we’re all in it together. FOR TICKET INFO CLICK HERE

2020 Fantasia Film Festival- Preview 

And these are just a few of the great movies that Fantasia has to offer. To read more, get ticket and festival information CLICK HERE! 

AMovieGuy.com's Preview of the 2020 Fantasia Film Festival!


2020 is a strange year and it is just as strange for film festivals. For the first time, the Fantasia Film Festival will go completely online which is not ideal, but it’s the current world we are living in. And to be cliche, the show must go on. It’s at least a reminder of how much we miss the entire experience of going to the movies and seeing a great performance with a group of our peers; More than ever, I wish I could just sit with horror genre super fans, with a big bag of popcorn on my lap. This year, there’s good and bad at Fantasia, filled with a mix of films, ranging from the standard horror flicks, but there’s also a bit of weird sci-fi, excellent documentaries, and a monster picture Godzilla would be proud of. It’s Fantasia 2020 and you never know what you will get. Here are a few of the movies I checked out for AMovieGuy.com:

MOVIE: FEELS GOOD MAN
DIRECTOR: ARTHUR JONES

By far one of the best films at Fantasia this year is Feels Good Man. Where does one begin? This is a documentary about what happens when an artist has an animated character he draws that becomes a symbol of hatred. Matt Furie created the character Pepe the Frog, but little did he know that one day his bug-eyed walking frog would become the symbol for nazis, white supremacists, MAGA crazed bigots, and anyone who hates minority groups. What began as a caricature made by Furie was no longer his, no longer something silly, and Feels Good Man does an excellent job of tracking it’s transformation. Director Arthur Jones also does a unique job of capturing the toxicity of the internet, a place that continues to be the death of intellectual thought, and the cesspool for angry, hateful people. This is an incredibly scary documentary. It captures everything that is wrong with the world today and how a collection of online goons hide behind their keyboards. Feels Good Man proves that it’s important for artists to protect their work more than ever and the character of Pepe will never be anything, but a symbol of hatred. It’s hard not to feel bad for Matt Furie. He’s a good artist. FOR TICKET INFO CLICK HERE