As culture in our fair city of film continues to recede, bulldozed aside by the careless and artless to stick up a few more hotels, it is more important than ever to encourage those who share art for art’s own sake. Those who genuinely embrace the wonderful, the wild and the weird of cinema, rather than simply Press Up against it….
Cabaret Noise introduced themselves during the summer with their efforts to bring “cinemas greatest and most forgotten oddities” to venues and locations around Dublin and they will be returning in the weeks and months ahead with their second series, THE HARVEST BLOOD MOON, a selection of horror films about seasonal change that are set to take place at The Darkroom this autumn and winter, with admissions free of charge (and donations welcome).
Of all the seasonal changes throughout the year, says Cabaret Noise, none are so pointed as the fall from summer into autumn. These shifts occur in the colours of our landscapes and the confusing temperatures in the air. Our bodies get sick and our minds can’t process it. There’s no better time for fear to take hold.
From September to November, the film company will tackle the latest bout of seasonal scares with The Harvest Blood Moon. It features three horror films where the stress of real life alters the characters in irreversible ways. In Marina Sargenti’s Mirror Mirror, enigmatic actor Rainbow Harvest plays a bullied goth who has just moved house and school, and becomes prey to the dangerous force lurking in her new home. Marina de Van is a danger only to herself as she directs and stars in In My Skin, in which an unfortunate accident leads to an unhealthy compulsion for the director and star. Finally, Stephanie Rothman directs screen legend Celeste Yarnall in The Velvet Vampire, a work of tense erotic entanglement set in the stifling sun of the Californian desert.
These screenings will all be taking place at The Darkroom , Stoneybatter and while admissions are free, donations are welcome for this examination of oddities. See below for further details of the screenings for The Harvest Blood Moon, with descriptions courtesy of Cabaret Noise themselves.
See more info about the films being screened in this series below:
Mirror Mirror 27/09/19 at 19:00
A major reason why the autumn is such a potentially frightful season has to be the return to school. Every kid in existence dreads it and it is only made worse by being at a new school. This is what faces Megan as she and her recently widowed mother move to a posh new town, to try bring stability back to their lives. Played by woman of mystery Rainbow Harvest, Megan is a goth who dresses in the most incredible and weird outfits but whose disposition is clouded in sadness. Stripped of any power by her bullying classmates and her unconcerned mother, Megan turns to the alluring aura coming from the old mirror in her bedroom. Desperate, she feeds off its ancient powers and finds a modicum of autonomy over her identity. Megan’s displaced anxiety at the many changing aspects of her life become a great rage in the hands of a supernatural force. She achieves her return to power through the unbearable heat of the gym showers or the frighteningly quick rotting of cooked meat on the plate of her mother’s new boyfriend. Director Marina Sargenti fully understands the stresses of Megan’s life and gives her chances at catharsis that always carry grave consequences.
In My Skin 18/10/19 at 19:00
CW: Self Harm
Change can be triggered by something far more innocuous than moving home or starting at a new school. For Marina de Van’s Esther, it was merely a fall. A young successful, seemingly happy woman, Esther is at a party one night and while wandering around outside she falls over and gashes her leg quite badly. Ignoring it at first, she seems to almost forget it until she looks to see the blood trail down her leg. Finding herself numb to the pain, Esther grows a compulsion to continuing lacerating herself. Maybe to try feel something or maybe because there’s something else inside her that she wants to get out. The more she cuts, the more she seems to learn about herself and about how she does not fit into society. Working norms, gender norms, every type of societal pressure starts to slip away from her as she feels more at ease dissecting her own skin in hopes of finding what lies beneath.
The Velvet Vampire 15/11/19 at 19:00
The most enduring monster myth of the 19th century, the vampire first made its mark as an ancient, unchanged evil preying on the modern world. In the Velvet Vampire, Rothman transposes the Dracula myth from the Carpathian Mountains to 70s California, trading the gothic castle for a modernist villa, the foggy forests for a dusty desert and the paean to the moral character of Victorian society to a challenge of liberal hippie values. The narrative is kick-started by change, too: to satiate her growing appetite for blood, Celeste Yarnall’s velvet vampire Diane LeFanu invites a young, liberated hippie couple to a weekend getaway in her desert mansion in an attempt to seduce them both and harvest their blood. What follows are fetishistic mind games, oneiric Magritte installations, creepy daylight excursions into mines and graveyards and Celeste Yarnall’s gallery of improbably luminous costumes that can only be described as aristocratic 50s sci-fi haute couture. Trippy low-budget thrills aren’t all Rothman has on her mind, however. By colliding timeless myth with a specific time and place, she upends our conception of the Vampire figure as a scheming prince of darkness and twists him into a female Frankenstein analogue – a tragic figure whose longing for social and emotional connection is betrayed by her cursed, beastly nature.