Another year, another Overlook Film Festival is in the books! 2023 was a welcome return to form with several films that will likely make significant waves in the horror genre for years to come. Though we have loved most every version of the festival, even when it had to go fully digital, something felt renewed about this year’s event. The buzz was just bigger this year, and I am certain that there will be films that will be hugely influential for years to come that were just released at this festival.
The world premiere of Renfield, a Universal picture, as well as the premieres of the excellent real-world social media horror of Accused, the zealous misfortunes of Godless: The Eastfield Exorcism, the fear-of-menopause Clock, the stoner horror Trim Season, it appears that Overlook is once again an important platform launching showcase.
The Overlook Film Festival has a very important legacy for The Scariest Things. In 2018, I attended the New Orleans event for the first time, and it is where I met Liz, who has been an essential (if not THE essential) piece of The Scariest Things for the past four years. It also was the location of our first director interview (Darren Lyn Bousman), my first red carpet event (St. Agatha), my first big feature after-show party (Hereditary), and all of the wonderful immersive events that Overlook does so well.
This year, the immersive events that have been missing since the pandemic are now back in force. The inclusion of the repertory films was well used this time, with Joe Dante, John Goodman, and David Dastmalchian doing the great double feature of Matinee and The Tingler. The 1927 Hitchcock movie, The Lodger: A Story of The London Fog, his first thriller got a new live score. So, some very unique events, and a great time that isn’t going away.
Star ratings out of ★★★★★ possible
Intensity ratings out of 🩸🩸🩸🩸🩸
- Late Night with the Devil: ★★★★★, 🩸🩸🩸
- Talk To Me: ★★★★★, 🩸🩸🩸🩸
- How to Sell a Haunted House in a Challenging Market, a live performance with author Grady Hendrix.
- Eating at Turkey and the Wolf, Butcher Cochon, Rosedale, and Saba. New Orleans food rocks!
- The Tingler, presented in “Percepto!”, with Joe Dante and David Dastmalchian as Dr. Fearless.
- Renfield: ★★★★1/2, 🩸🩸🩸🩸
- Evil Dead Rise: ★★★★, 🩸🩸🩸🩸🩸
- Accused: ★★★★, 🩸🩸
- Meeting and greeting other patrons. Talking to other festival goers when in line and comparing notes. Making new friends. Seeing Old friends. Talking with the filmmakers.
- Brooklyn 45: ★★★★, 🩸🩸
- Godless: The Eastfield Exorcism: ★★★★, 🩸🩸
- Final Exam Horror Trivia: Overlook Edition, with Ted Geoghagn
- Ring, Ring,: A Doorbell Cam Fantasia
- Smoking Causes Coughing: ★★★1/2, 🩸🩸🩸
- The Wrath of Becky: ★★★, 🩸🩸🩸
- The line confusion for Evil Dead Rise.
- Eating cinema and mall food at the theater when I’m in the theaters when I could be in Greater New Orleans sampling awesome cuisine.
- Cinema audio was too loud at some of the movies.
- Mister Organ: ★★, 🚫
- My Animal: ★★1/2, 🩸
- No lounge to relax in next to the theater to talk with the other patrons.
- Missing out on the Short Films.
- Add a Wednesday! Need just a little more time to see everything. I still missed out on about six films I wanted to see including Aberrance, Clock, It Lives Inside, Monolith, Appendage, and The Five Devils. Just… not… enough… time!
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