So, back again, and this time we're counting down from five to one and giving you the finest of what Film Gutter enjoyed this year. To have Baskin – a film I rated 10/10 – missing out on the top five is a testament to the quality of the movies enjoyed this year, and all of the movies below were serious contenders for the top title. If you love your horror from the very edge, then all of these are well worth your time.
FILM GUTTER'S TOP TEN OF 2016 – PART ONE
Well, 2016 was another epic year here at Film Gutter, with some phenomenal films to enjoy from the range of extreme classics as well as some stunning new releases. Last year's top ten list was hard enough to develop, but taking into account the fact that I dished out full marks to no less than six movies, this is going to be a seriously thorny task ahead. Once more into the breach then...
The criteria, as always, is for movies watched in 2016 and not necessarily movies made or released in 2016. The ratings are also based on the overall quality of the film rather than its shock value or 'disturbingness'.
Come on in, the water's twisted...
ILSA: SHE WOLF OF THE SS (1975)
Dir. Don Edmonds, Canada/USA, 96 mins
Time for another delve and dive into the strange world that is Film Gutter, and this week we're travelling back in time just over forty years for one of the best-known entries in the short-lived but popular Nazispolitation subgenre. Sure, we still have the likes of Dead Snow and Nazis at the Centre of the Earth coming out these days, but there's not quite the sinister undertone and gruesome stylings that we 'enjoyed' in the 1970s.
BY ALEX DAVIS
Come on in, the water's squamous...
Guzoo (Or The Thing Abandoned by God) (1986)
Dir. Kazuo 'Gaira' Komizu, Japan, 40 mins
Japan is a country that has always had a proud tradition of extreme cinema, and has always been extremely prolific in producing movies that would give plenty of people cause to pause. We've had some great experiences – well, let's say unforgettable – with Japanese film, but we've hardly touched the tip of the iceberg in terms of what was produced in the 80s. In a bid to remedy that, I've just sat and watched Guzoo – also marvellously known as The Thing Abandoned By God, and will be settling in for a bit more 80's madness from Japan in the coming weeks.
Come on in, the water’s baffling…
A Garden Without Birds (Kotori Tachi No Inai Hanazono) (1992)
Dir. Akira Nobi, Japan, 22 minutes
Of late, I find myself on something of a short film kick. I’ve always been a big fan of short stories in my reading, so there’s a certainly logic that I probably would like shorter, snappier movies, right? What’s interesting is that – because short films don’t always get the same fanfare and coverage as their longer counterparts – very often you go into a movie with no idea what it’s all about.
That was very much the case with A Garden Without Birds.
By Alex Davis
COME ON IN, THE WATER'S APPALLING...
Well how could you go wrong with a title like that? After all, we've had great fun with the likes of Nekromantik and Nekromantik 2 around these parts. There's also a Japanese movie by the very same name, which I will be coming to some time, but this is the cult 1998 short film from the US. And of course the clue is rather in the title...
BY ALEX DAVIS
Come on in, the water's roving...
So, today marks the return of Film Gutter from what was – in all honestly – a totally impromptu break. It wasn't a plan to take some time off, but it has been a fraught couple of months that has seen me chair a British Fantasy Convention, run another event here in my native Derby, start and quit one job and start and distinctly like the look of another. So to call September and October eventful kind of sums it up, and there's been precious little time to indulge the extreme horror hobby. I think this is the first time I've missed more than a week in the better part of two years, so it's not been bad going.