As you’ve seen from the videos posted direct from the festival I had an awesome time at Abertoir 2012, but I still felt like there was room for a further write-up on it now that I’ve had some time to reflect on the whole thing.
What is wonderful about Abertoir is the fact that you don’t have to choose between screenings as you might with some larger festivals so its easier to take a chance on films that you’re not sure about or would probably not normally make the effort to see. As a result, you can stumble upon some real gems and in some cases, even change your mind about certain sub-genres. This was certainly true for me this year as before attending I had it set in my head that I was not a fan of body horror – however the cold and heartbreaking Errors of the Human Body and Brandon Cronenberg’s stunning debut Antiviral have changed my mind about that and I definitely want to find more films like them. Suggestions via Twitter always welcomed.
There is truly something for everyone at Abertoir and that was certainly highlighted this year through the wide selection of classic and newly restored films showing alongside new projects from experienced and up and coming directors. This is without even mentioning the wide range of sub-genres on offer, including musicals, thrillers and monster movies, as well as short films.
Another thing that Abertoir has is an incredible sense of community. The organisers are incredibly welcoming and this obviously extends to the guests they are able to secure for Q&As. Even those who are unable to attend send videos (some hilarious introductions like the directors of Resolution) and are usually well-received by the audience. I would challenge anyone to find such a selection of films, talks and special events for as little as Abertoir charges.
So with all that said, I’ll discuss my personal favourites from the festival. I had several favourites throughout the festival that changed in order throughout the week, but all remain very strong contenders and certainly future additions to my DVD collection. Ultimately American Mary was my favourite film, closely followed by Sightseers (which was shown with wickedly funny short Him Indoors) with Errors of the Human Body, Antiviral, Resolution and Citadel close behind. An honorable mention has to go to Sleep Tight, which actually had me checking under the bed after I saw it! I’m hoping to have some full reviews of some up pretty soon.