Kicking off day five of Frightfest was the oddly prescient Video Nasties: Moral Panic, Censorship and Videotape. Jake West’s documentary explores the period in British film history in which the infamous video nasties list was made and the work of various people who sort to cut and ban horror videos that they felt were too extreme for UK audiences. West’s documentary is not remarkable in form, mostly consisting of talking heads and clips, but the content provided by excellent interviewees makes this documentary indispensable. Particularly wonderful are the interviews with Martin Barker, who steals the film with his intelligent insights and impassioned arguments.

Following Video Nasties and a lively on stage discussion about censorship came the Ford brothers Zombie film The Dead. Setting the film in Africa and casting a White main lead was a tricky decision due to the potentially problematic allegorical readings that this could result in. The Ford Brothers seem to avoid this by making a film that is quite shallow. They also infuse the film with a ‘why don’t we all just get along’ style sentiment that is trite and mawkish. The Dead could have been an impressive zombie film with stunning locations and interesting social commentary but is disappointing on almost every level. In a recent outburst on Twitch Jon Ford commented that “This is the most original Zombie film since the original Dawn of the Dead!”. This is very very far from true.

Korean thriller Bedevilled was next on the main screen and was introduced as a slow burn. This was certainly true and the film gradually built to a violent and bloody climax that felt entirely earnt by the proceeding narrative developments. With intriguing and well drawn characters and a beautiful location Bedevilled is certainly a very watchable film and one that wasn’t particularly bad in any way. It was though somewhat unremarkable overall.

Red White & Blue received its UK premiere next. You can read our coverage of the film here including my full review of the film and exclusive interviews with Simon Rumley and Amanda Fuller.

The UK premiere of The Last Exorcism closed the day and the festival. The Last Exorcism is a film that I was impressed by on initial viewing and when discussing and decontructing it further I realise the incredibly cleverly crafted work that it is. The Last Exorcism is released in UK cinemas this week and is definitely worth checking out.

Just before Bedevilled Frightfest we were also treated to a preview of the forthcoming series The Walking Dead and I was very impressed. The promo material, talking heads etc, was quite terrible but following that we were shown the opening scene from the first episode in which Andrew Lincoln’s character (Rick Grimes) awakes in a hospital to find death and devastation surrounding him. You can watch the trailer here and I suspect this is going to be a must see series when it begins airing in America in October and the UK in November.

Embedded below are the trailers for all the features on the main screen on Monday.