March 19The Boston Underground Film Festival kicked off with a grimy, gooey bang this Thursday, with a screening of Frank Henenlotter/R.A. the Rugged Man team-up Bad Biology (an uproarious romp involving genitals run amok, which I cover briefly here, and the Mondo Movie podcast guys discuss pretty thoroughly here). The icing on this stunningly lewd cake was the special guest appearances by Henenlotter, R.A., and cast members Charlee Danielson and Anthony Sneed).
Science dropped and hilarity ensued, particularly when one spastic
audience member asked hip-hop artist
(and self-proclaimed "American lowlife") R.A. to "do a rap."DOWNLOAD: Cast and creators of Bad Biology (live at BUFF '09 at the Kendall Square Theatre) [mp3] March 20"It's
a shame that people don't get to see enough amazing short films," BUFF
executive director Anna Feder remarked yesterday at the Brattle Theatre. That was right before J. Cannibal
launched "Tapas of Terror," a gore-drenched horror platter that
included: bounty-hunter bonanza Dead Bones, the tasty Robot Chicken-y nugget I, Zombie, the absurd little-old-church-ladies-wielding-heavy-artillery flick Guns and Butter, the genuinely horrifying (and pedorific) Popsicle, the unspeakably awesome Treevenge, the super-slick and spooky The Facts in the Case of Mister Hollow, and the Silent Hill-meets-Eraserhead-y Heart of Karl.So
yes, if you didn't catch "Tapas," you definitely missed out. But BUFF
still has plenty of short-film showcases left up its sleeve, all screening at the Kendall. Here's a full rundown, complete with highlights.Sunday, March 22
Illustrated Oddities @ 2:30 pmBirdy
underground film is a dish best served short, indie animation done well is like cinematic foie gras. On the "Illustrated Oddities" menu
are slew of notable shorts, including the aforementioned Mister Hollow (an atmospheric little gem that plays like a collision of Myst, Edward Gorey illos, and Blade Runner's futuristic forensic photo scan scene) and the stop-motion-animated Birdy, about a flightless bird with a wish for wings that work.Ill Logic @ 3:15 pmPrison_beta
Take a twisty-turny trip through the mental corridors of roughly
one dozen filmmakers with this handful of sense-defying cinema. The two
I'm most jazzed about: the absurdly meta 'Charlie Rose' By Samuel Beckett, in which everyone's favorite talking head grills himself, and Prison_beta, which takes a hilarious swipe at E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, the Atari game so heinous, truckloads of its unsold copies had to be buried in a New Mexico landfill.
In Lucas Dimwick's 8-bit short, "Catastrophic events are set in motion
after millions of E.T. Atari video game cartridges become radioactive
as a result of being buried near the Trinity nuclear bomb test site."
Monday, March 23Paranoia (Does It Annoy Ya?) @ 7:30 pm
In Case of an Emergency
Bring your tinfoil hats, folks -- this is a showcase that watches you.
The films sure to get under your
skin include the Despotic Brume: Omen series from Ataxia Films (MySpace motto: "Plasma Baron is Vague Unease as Entertainment"), the Unabomber-inspired I Know Who Sent the Anthrax Letters, and In Case of an Emergency,
in which the apocalypse-obsessed hypochondriac CoCo Lee gets sandbagged
by another catastrophe: the demise of her relationship.
Tuesday, March 24BUFF Family Values @ 5:45 pm
The Gingerbread House
Full House this ain't. (But you knew that already.) Notable entries in this blood-spattered family album of fussin' and feudin' kinfolk: The Gingerbread House,
a hallucinogenic fever-dream take on "Hansel & Gretel" that
gleefully dishes up more taboo than you can shake a coke-smeared
lollipop at (incest ahoy); the locally spawned Sister Stuff, in which two sinister sibs take their bitter rivalry to the grave and beyond; and the exquisite Excision,
a film that cuts close to the bone with its tale of a girl who aches to realize her grisly fantasies about performing surgery.Illustrated Oddities @ 7:30 pm
Wednesday, March 25Ill Logic @ 7:30 pm(see Sunday)Midnight Transgressions @ 9:45 pmElectric Fence
If you're looking for cringe-inducing depravity, then "Midnight Transgressions" is your oyster. Of the plethora of perversity on tap: Stupid Junkie Faggot plays like the dwarven flipper-baby love child of an Anal Cunt song and a Troma film, Electric Fence injects new horror into castration anxiety, and Mi amor vive en las alcantarillas (My Love Lives in the Sewers) uses black-and-white to spare viewers the full assault of the Vaseline-caked filth lurking within.
BUFF Awards Ceremony @ March 22, 10 pm
Also, don't miss the BUFF Awards Ceremony on Sunday, where the fest's famed vibrating rabbit trophies will be doled out to select filmmakers (full disclosure: I am on the judging panel). It's gonna be a nail-biter, at Tommy Doyle's, 1 Kendall Sq, Cambridge | March 22 @ 10 pm | $10 | www.bostonunderground.org or www.tommydoyles.com.