Preview @ Prince Charles 18th of April, 2013 – In cinemas 26th of April


Anthology movies are risky. The quality of the narrative and the effectiveness of the whole picture can suffer dangerous downs as well as enjoying intense ups, and ABCs of Death is not the exception to this rule.
26 shorts crammed into one single film, $5000 each, complete freedom of creativity given to the various directors, they go from 30 to 300 seconds and the 2-hour ride is one hell of a bloody roller-coaster. It is hard to pick the best ones, the most inspiring (and inspired), the most intense, the most gruesome, the most original, the worst or the silliest (well, F might as well be the one), all of the 26 shorts give something to shout for and each one of them will make you cringe and hold on to the chair very tightly.

Nacho Vigalondo opens the dances with A (for Apocalypse) and sets the mood for the rest to come, while the extremely oriental, weird and surreal Z (for Zetsumetsu) by Yoshihiro Nishimura closes the curtain. The highest bar for quality film-making is set by D (for Dogfight), directed with brutal precision and crude realism by Marcel Sarmiento, whereas the peak of gore and sickness is reached by L (for Libido), where Timo Tjahjanto portraits an onanistic and perverted death match dressed with a chainsaw topping, and by X (for XXL) where Xavier Gens’s talent and over-the-top twist help to sell the message of discomfort and inadequacy. Other notable letters are S (for Speed), directed by Jake West, an oneiric downward spiral into the darkness of addiction, P (for Pressure), where Simon Rumley displays his usual discreet and yet powerful touch to describe everyday struggle and drama, M (for Miscarriage), directed somewhat hastily by Ti West, but effective in its straightforward brutality, and U (for Unearthed), by Ben Wheatley, a POV rush whose immediacy and rawness will surely glue your eyes to the screen. Best artsy short is surely O (for Orgasm), by Bruno Forzani, a close-to-videoart concept yet visually astonishing and emphatically powerful.
Despite a few obvious shallow or not-so-original-nor-horror ideas, ABCs of Death succeeds in earning the tagline of Anthology to end all anthologies, allowing its directors to show off their best shots, or at least their best intentions.
Now repeat, A for Apocalypse, B for Bigfoot, C for Cycle, D for Dogfight, E for Exterminate….

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