I’ve covered this 26-part horror anthology film since July 2012 (I was actually sold the instant I heard the pitch/set-up), and after much frustrating bumping around with the release date, The ABCs of Death will be available On Demand (The latest trailers say “Everywhere On Demand”, but obviously, you’ll need to check with your cable provider) beginning 12:01 AM January 31st, followed by a limited theatrical release on March 8th. After a 6-month wait, you think we’re not waiting up to watch it after midnight Wednesday, the second it shows on the menu?
They did finally release the list of every director, their letter, and the title of their segment. All we’ve known since late last year is Xavier Gens’ “X is For XXL” (supposed to be a huge standout, and gore-off) and of course, “T” contest winner Lee Hardcastle with his Claymation stand-out “T is for Toilet” (you can see it by hitting the link to this piece, some friendly advice. do NOT watch while eating, on hallucinogenics, feeling emotionally unstable, or if you have a rare fear of and/or nightmares about hungry carnivorous toilets).
There’s some of my favorite directors (especially international ones) at the helm here to sweeten the already-great set-up, and the segment titles alone are enough to tip me off that I shouldn’t watch while feeling nauseous. Ready? Here’s the 26! To give an element of surprise, and also because I’ve got a deadline zooming at me head-on, I kept the listing in alphabetical order of the directors, rather than the letters. The movie will be showing them in alphabetical order, though!
Kaare Andrews — segment “V is for Vagitus”
Angela Bettis — segment “E is for Exterminate”
Hélène Cattet — segment “O is for Orgasm”
Ernesto Díaz Espinoza — segment “C is for Cycle”
Jason Eisener — segment “Y Is for Youngbuck”*
Bruno Forzani — segment “O is for Orgasm”
Adrián García Bogliano — segment “B Is for Bigfoot”
Xavier Gens — segment “X Is for XXL”*
Lee Hardcastle — Contest Winning segment “T Is for Toilet”*
Noboru Iguchi — segment “F is for Fart”
Thomas Cappelen Malling — segment “H is for Hyrdo-Electric Diffusion”
Jorge Michel Grau — segment “I is for Ingrown”
Anders Morgenthaler — segment “K is for Klutz”
Yoshihiro Nishimura — segment “Z is for Zetsumetsu”*
Banjong Pisanthanakun — segment “N is for Nuptials” *
Simon Rumley — segment “P Is for Pressure”
Marcel Sarmiento — segment “D Is for Dogfight” *
Jon Schnepp — segment “W is for WTF?”
Srdjan Spasojevic — segment “R Is for Removed”
Timo Tjahjanto — segment “L is for Libido” *
Andrew Traucki — segment “G is for Gravity”
Nacho Vigalondo — segment “A Is for Apocalypse”
Jake West — segment “S is for Speed”
Ti West — segment “M Is for Miscarriage”
Ben Wheatley — segment “U Is for Unearthed”
Adam Wingard — segment “Q Is for Quack”*
Yudai Yamaguchi — segment “J is for Jidai-geki” *
We also took the liberty of marking (with an asterisk ) some of the segments that we’ve read consistently –and from several sources– were supposed to be especially impressive stand-outs …with the critics and the crowd’s biggest audience re-actions.
Oh, we’re sure those aren’t the only nine out of twenty-six good ones; these are just the ones that get mentioned the most. I wouldn’t be surprised (especially judging from some of the still photos and titles) if many of the rest are too outrageous or offensive to describe. I believe four minutes is the time limit for each segment, so if there’s a few that you find boring or stupid, you won’t have to wait long until a good one comes up. If even half of them are fun, we’ll be happy. I know there’s a few failed attempts, but with 26 segments and directors like Xavier Gens, Lee Hardcastle, and half the team responsible for the Thai horror classic Shutter (Banjong Pisanthanakun) in there, fine with me.
If you’d rather have as few surprises as possible and know the exact order of the ways to die, here’s the ‘spoiler version’ of the above list. Just high-light to read.
- A: Nacho Vigalondo (A for Apocalypse)
- B: Adrian Garcia Bogliano (B Is for Bigfoot)
- C: Ernesto Diaz Espinoza (C is for Cycle)
- D: Marcel Sarmiento (D is for Dogfight)
- E: Angela Bettis (E is for Exterminate)
- F: Noboru Iguchi (F is for Fart)
- G: Andrew Traucki (G is for Gravity)
- H: Thomas Malling (H is for Hyrdo-Electric Diffusion)
- I: Jorge Michel Grau (I is for Ingrown)
- J: Yûdai Yamaguchi (J is for Jidai-geki)
- K: Anders Morgenthaler (K is for Klutz)
- L: Timo Tjahjanto (L is for Libido)
- M: Ti West (M for Miscarriage)
- N: Banjong Pisanthanakun (N is for Nuptials)
- O: Bruno Forzani, Héléne Cattet (O is for Orgasm)
- P: Simon Rumley (P is for Pressure)
- Q: Adam Wingard, Simon Barrett (Q for Quack)
- R: Srdjan Spasojevic (R is for Removed)
- S: Jake West (S is for Speed)
- T: Lee Hardcastle (T is for Toilet)
- U: Ben Wheatley (U is for Unearthed)
- V: Kaare Andrews (V is for Vagitus)
- W: Jon Schnepp (W is for WTF)
- X: Xavier Gens (X for XXL)
- Y: Jason Eisener (Y for Young Buck)
- Z: Yoshihiro Nishimura (Z is for Zetsumetsu)
And there’s PLENTY more information on The ABCs of Death where that came from! Keep your eyes peeled…er, perhaps not the right phrase at the right time. Watch this space. That’s better!
If you want to see the Red Band trailer, it’s in this post here. Check it out!
- Shorter Is Scarier: Why Horror Anthologies Need to Make a Comeback! By Ian Buckwalter of The Atlantic (horrorboom.com)
- Short Film Zone: “Dead Man’s Lake” – Short Horror Film (Bloody Cuts) (horrorboom.com)
- The ABC’s of Death (puremassacre.wordpress.com)
- Sundance 2013: ‘S-VHS’ Movie Review. (horrorboom.com)
Will be watching the shit out of it as soon as it hits.
You see it yet?
“Young Buck” (it was the dunk shot that was the icing on the goddamned cake for me), “Libido,” “XXL” (which someone spoiled for me, but I saw where Gens was going with it early on) and “Speed” stuck out for me, among others… I tried to write a piece for the site picking ten of the best but I couldn’t narrow it down past a dozen, which I guess says something. I just loved the concept (the SECOND I heard the tagline/pitch last summer I was like, “fucking sold, how fast can I get my hands on a copy?”), the fact they got directors from all over the world, that they didn’t have to worry about the MPAA, and all in all, had a fucking great time. There were a few real stinkers (um, so to speak–blecckk) but I didn’t regret a penny of the rental fee, and I hope they follow through with the promise of a sequel! Also that Lee Hardcastle gets another film in it, if so. The films that worked really, REALLY worked… and a few were actually frightening and disturbing. I’m glad they didn’t show the word until the end, because I watched over a hundred of the “T contest” shorts and having the word at the start, especially if it was something specific like “Twig” or “Tapeworm” gets distracting from the short itself, so good call for the movie. I actually wished after it started that I hadn’t skimmed over the titles for each letter. So I took a break after a few, had some red wine, then I didn’t have as much of a problem getting caught up in the shorts themselves…
Oh ya! And I loved it. Libido was definitely my favourite; damn twisted. Speed was a great one as well! Exterminate was the most unnerving in my opinion, I hate fukkin spiders! Apocalypse was a fitting start to the film; oddly disturbing. The comic relief of Quack was great. You know what I could keep going on about the flick. What a wild ride, definitely a must-see. (apologies if I don’t make any sense, I am really hungover lol). Cheers.