The 12th London Short Film Festival

LFF 2015
LSFF 2015

The 12th London Short Film Festival

Dates: 9-18 January 2015

ICA, Hackney Picturehouse, Oval Space, London

LSFF website

For its 12th edition, the London Short Film Festival presents another exciting and jam-packed line-up, inluding 34 themed film programmes alongside a number of live shows and inventive events. Running from 9 to 18 January, the LSFF core programme of selected shorts will screen across Hackney Picturehouse and the ICA, where the festival kicks off in style with a screening of the British Council Best UK Short Award nominees, followed by the ever popular Funny Shit selection.

Other themed programmes include the ever popular Fucked Up Love, Lo-Budget Mayhem, Night of the Living Docs, Surreal Worlds, Teenage Girls Go Crazy! as well as new additions Tales of the Unexpected, WTF: Outside the Box, Gothic! and A Musical Box.

We are particularly excited about the music and film crossover event that sees Gazelle Twin working alongside experimental animator Carla MacKinnon to create a new live show at the ICA on 15 January. Also worth checking out is the London premiere of the Branchage Festival commission of Jersey-based band Semu Ca’s new score to outlandish silent documentary-fiction hybrid Häxan: Witchcraft through the Ages (in association with Filmphonics live scores at the Hackney Attic).

Other noteworthy events include analogue synthesizer obsessives documentary I Dream of Wires (in association with Dazzle London), followed by a live set by electronic duo Shitwife and analogue visual projections by Julian Hand; The Errorists‘ ‘The Ascendant Accumulation of Realism’ featuring live cello by Andreas Köhler and the videowork of Hilary Koob-Sassen; and the world premiere of Silver Shoes, the portmanteau feature by Jennifer Lyon Bell, who works with feminist erotic content.

Throughout the Festival Hackney Picturehouse will host DVD-Bang, a pop-up micro cinema based on the South Korean movie rental shops, as well as the industry programmes, including workshops and happy hour drinks. The ICA will screen LSFF’s experimental new short film programmes, including the regular Leftfield & Luscious, alongside Celluloid Traces and a showcase of the best of UK animation.

For more information and the full programme, please visit the LSFF website.

School of Shock: Pain and Pleasure in the Classroom Safety Film

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Fur Coat Club

Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies – London

Instructor: Kier-La Janisse

Date: 8 January

Time: 7-10pm

Venue: Horse Hospital

Address: Colonnade, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 1JD

Prices: £10 advance / £11 on the door / £8 concs / £50 full season ticket

Miskatonic website

For many genre fans, a love affair with horror and the grotesque began early on, sometimes fueled by unlikely sources. One of these was the classroom safety film, which for many kids was their first time seeing other children threatened by true danger, being confronted with a combination of gore effects and actual accident footage, and being offered a pictorial glimpse at things their parents didn’t want to talk about. Thousands of these films were made in North America from the 1940s through the 1980s, when companies like Centron, McGraw-Hill, Coronet, Encyclopaedia Britannica Films, Avis Films, Crawley Films, Bell Labs, the NFB and others thrived on the burgeoning market for classroom or workplace educational films.

Subjects ranged from safety in and around vehicles, to drug abuse and venereal disease, teaching children scary lessons about everything from dental hygiene to how to spot a pedophile. The most memorable of these films deliberately used horror visuals to entice and/or shock children into paying attention – such as those by prolific producer Sid Davis (1916-2006) – and some were even made by directors with genre film pedigrees, such as Carnival of Souls’ Herk Harvey, a key figure in the industrial film scene.

This lecture and screening by Kier-La Janisse, founder of The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies, will present some of the most notorious educational films of the 40-year golden age of social hygiene onscreen. We’ll also briefly look at educational television PSAs, from the British Public Information Films through the incredibly grisly Australian drunk driving commercials of the 1990s.

The classic era of classroom films may be over, but viewed from today’s perspective, some of these films offer up a fascinating survey of changing social mores and cultural preoccupations (not to mention fashions!). Being safe has never looked so grim.

WARNING: This program contains graphic imagery, including real accident and casualty footage.

About the instructor:

Kier-La Janisse is a film writer and programmer, the founder of The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies and Owner/Editor-in-Chief of Spectacular Optical. She has been a programmer for the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Austin, Texas, co-founded Montreal microcinema Blue Sunshine, founded the CineMuerte Horror Film Festival in Vancouver (1999-2005) and was the subject of the documentary Celluloid Horror (2005). She has written for Filmmaker, Shindig!, Incite: Journal of Experimental Media, Rue Morgue and Fangoria magazines, has contributed to The Scarecrow Movie Guide (Sasquatch Books, 2004) and Destroy All Movies!! The Complete Guide to Punks on Film (Fantagraphics, 2011), and is the author of A Violent Professional: The Films of Luciano Rossi (FAB Press, 2007) and House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films (FAB Press, 2012). She co-edited Spectacular Optical Book One: KID POWER! with Paul Corupe, and is currently writing A Song From the Heart Beats the Devil Every Time, about children’s programming in the counterculture era.

The next course dates are 12 February, 12 March, 9 April, 14 May, 11 June. For the full details of the courses please check the Miskatonic website. For all enquiries, please email Miskatonic.london@gmail.com.

Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies – London unveils full Jan-June line-up

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Miskatonic London will be based at the Horse Hospital from January 8

Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies – London

Pilot season: Jan-June 2015

Dates: 8 January, 12 February, 12 March, 9 April, 14 May, 11 June

Time: 7-10pm

Venue: Horse Hospital

Address: Colonnade, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 1JD

Prices: £10 advance / £11 on the door / £8 concs / £50 full season ticket

Miskatonic website

THE MISKATONIC INSTITUTE OF HORROR STUDIES – LONDON UNVEILS FULL JANUARY-JUNE LINEUP

The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies has revealed the full curriculum for the pilot season of its branch in London, which opens on January 8th, with intensive film classes on a wide range of topics from safety films to cannibals by some of the horror world’s most renowned critical luminaries.

Canadian founder Kier-La Janisse will make a brief UK appearance to launch the season with a lecture on classic classroom safety films and the shocks they deliver. She will be followed in February by Mark Pilkington, who will explore the exotic horrors of cannibal films. In March, Virginie Sélavy will look at 1960s-70s sado-masochistic erotica and the meanings of the various power games represented. The following month, Stephen Thrower will talk about Jesús Franco’s unique style of art, erotic and commercial filmmaking, marking the publication of his new book on the director. In May, Jasper Sharp will investigate the psychological and supernatural significance of landscapes, from Onibaba to Dust Devil. Closing the season, Kim Newman will discuss Gary Sherman’s 1972 Death Line the and the film’s use of cannibalism and political subtext.

Named for the fictional university in H.P. Lovecraft’s literary mythos, The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies is a non-profit, community-based organisation that started in Winnipeg and Montreal, Canada, founded by Kier-La Janisse in March of 2010. Miskatonic London operates under the co-direction of Kier-La Janisse and Virginie Sélavy.

All classes take place at the historic Horse Hospital, the heart of the city’s underground culture. Registration for the full season is £50. Individual class tickets are £10 advance / £11 on the door / £8 concessions and will be available 30 days in advance of each class.

For the full details of the courses please check the Miskatonic website. For all enquiries, please email Miskatonic.london@gmail.com.