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Harry Warden Turns 30 — FanExpo Recap

Did you make it to FanExpo in Toronto last weekend? If not, you missed a fun look back at one of the best Canadian slasher films of the 1980s, George Mihalka’s murderin’ miner tale MY BLOODY VALENTINE.

To celebrate the film’s release 30 years ago, Rue Morgue magazine organized this anniversary panel with eight cast and crewmembers chatting about bringing this classic slice of killer Canadiana to life. Of course, I’ve interviewed director George Mihalka and line producer Bob Presner in the past about their collaboration on this film (and on PINBALL SUMMER), but this was a nice opportunity to get some additional perspective from some of the cast and prolific Canadian B-film score composer Paul Zaza.

Here’s a few pics of the event courtesy of Rue Morgue and Canuxploitation contributor James Burrell.

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Canuxploitation on DVD: Fall 2011 Preview

With the bottom of the Hollywood barrell well-scraped, 2011 has again been a stellar year for DVD re-releases of classic Canadian B-films–ALIEN THUNDER, DOGPOUND SHUFFLETHINGS and, finally, the long awaited RITUALS. But there’s still a handful of great releases planned this year, mostly from Code Red and Scorpion Releasing, who have dug deep to come up with some nice Canadian B-film gems. Here’s the first in a new regular series of columns highlighting upcoming DVD releases that you might want to add to your canuxploitation collection. Note that list of upcoming and recent DVDs on the sidebar is always maintained and updated with the latest announcements throughout the year. 

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CanFilm Five: B-Movie Critic Allan Mott

“CanFilm Five” is the Canuxploitation blog’s ongoing guest column, which brings together prominent filmmakers, bloggers, critics and programmers to discuss their most loved offbeat Canadian films.

Allan Mott is the Edmonton-based writer responsible for such books as URBAN LEGENDS, GOTHIC GHOST STORIES and HAUNTING FIRESIDE STORIES. His least embarrassing literary achievement is his 2005 book, SCARY MOVIES, which documented the creation of six of his favourite horror movies—including David Cronenberg’s THE FLY. His reviews appear weekly on the B-movie blog FLICKATTACK.COM, and he attempts to update his own blog, THE HOUSE OF GLIB (now in its second—less content filled—incarnation), as often as inspiration allows.

For this CanFilm Five, Allan catalogues the five best (and worst!) performances by American actors caught slumming it in Canuxplotation cinema.  … Continue Reading

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2011 Festival of Fear Panels — Details Now Online

It’s almost time for Rue Morgue’s Festival of Fear again here in Toronto, and you know what that means–organizer FanExpo’s usual patience-testing parade of sweaty spandex, ungodly lineups, tweens with massive cardboard swords, ridiculous price gouging, awkward celebrity encounters and more fun, fun, fun!

For those who don’t know, I’m proud to have been a regular contributor to Rue Morgue magazine for the last seven (eight?) years, where I mostly focus on writing about classic horror films (and the occasional Canadian one too). Part of that ultra-glamorous writing lifestyle involves being at our annual convention at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, and this year I’ll be hosting two panels that fans of spooky CanCon might want to check out–hope to see you there!

Note that the MY BLOODY VALENTINE panel, previously scheduled Thursday, has now been moved to Sunday.

MY BLOODY VALENTINE 30TH ANNIVERSARY REUNION — August 28, 2pm
Celebrate 30 years of Canada’s classic slasher film with director GEORGE MIHALKA and cast members LORI HALLIER, PAUL KELMAN, CYNTHIA DALE, NEIL AFFLECK and ALF HUMPHREYS.

REMEMBERING FRIGHTENSTEIN — August 26, 5pm
Join VICTORIA PRICE and producer/co-star MITCH MARKOWITZ as we take a walk down memory lane of The Hilarious House of Frightenstein, Canada’s legendary monster kid’s show starring Vincent Price and Billy Van.

More details here.

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CanFilm Five: Horror Film Columnist Lauren Oostveen

“CanFilm Five” is the Canuxploitation blog’s ongoing guest column, which brings together prominent filmmakers, bloggers, critics and programmers to discuss their most loved offbeat Canadian films.

An professional history geek with an special interest in her province’s past, Halifax-based Lauren Oostveen writes “Smash Cut,” a biweekly film column focusing on cult and horror titles for the Chronicle Herald that often has an East Coast bent. When she’s not busy to digitizing and preserving some of Canada’s oldest films, Lauren blogs for Spacing Atlantic and her own site, Zombies Ate Lauren!. For this CanFilm Five, Lauren offers her five favourite Canadian low-budget masterpieces.

Lauren: I have a lot of love for this great country of ours. And despite all of the Tim Horton’s donuts I can eat and free healthcare to counter the donut situation, there’s nothing I love more about Canada than its films. I respect and enjoy Canadian films, even the cheesy, silly ones, because people here put just a little bit more effort into their work. A little more love. A lot more gore.

Choosing a top five is very hard, but I certainly do have a handful of films that I go to when people ask me for my Canadian favourites. I’ve already written about David Cronenberg, Bruce McDonald, Jason Eisener, and the PROM NIGHT series for my column, so this time I’m taking a step away from the usual suspects. I’ve selected five lesser-known movies that are weird, endearing and made for far less money than their American counterparts. … Continue Reading

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