Seasonal fun starts with the release of 80s shocker Silent Night, Deadly Night, uncut for the first time in the UK: killer Santa, heaps of gore and nudity, a dollop of sexual and religious guilt, it’s got it all. Being in the mood for terror, we take the opportunity of a new Blu-ray release to revisit The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and admire its ground-breaking soundtrack. Fans of spurting blood will be impressed by the geysers coming out of treacherous samurais dispatched by the hero of Lone Wolf and Cub. Although famous for its violence, the ultra-stylish 70s Japanese series has a lot more to offer than spectacular fight scenes. And we also look at Enzo Castellari’s macaroni war film Eagles over London – fun for the whole cult fan family. For a different kind of festive entertainment, watch out for British classic The Queen of Spades, a dark, dreamlike tale of bargains with the devil released as a special Boxing Day treat around the UK.
Out at the cinema this month is Jim Jarmusch’s latest, The Limits of Control. Jarmusch has become synonymous with American independent film, and our review of a revised edition of 100 American Independent Films is the occasion to look at the changes that have affected this sector in recent years. Things may be difficult, but the stunning Redland, which showed at Raindance in October, is proof that independent filmmakers are still able to produce work of remarkable quality â€“ read our interview with director Asiel Norton and writer/producer Magdalena Zyzak.
Continuing our coverage of Raindance’s Japanese women directors strand, we have an interview with the unique Sachi Hamano, one of the first female filmmakers in Japan and the director of over 300 pink films. We also talk to Apitchapong Weerasethakul about his video installation Primitive, which was presented at AND in September. And as omnibus film Germany 09 screens at the 12th Festival of German Films, we have an interview with two of the co-directors, Tow Tykwer and Fatih Akin.