The 12 most anticipated films of Fantastic Fest 2022

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By Rob Hunter Published September 22, 2022

This article is part of our coverage of the 2022 edition of Fantastic Fest, which will take place from September 22 to 29. Follow along with our reviews, interviews, and festival features in our Fantastic Fest archive.


It’s that time of year again when movie lovers in Austin gather for a full week of movies, fun and weird antics – it’s Fantastic Party 2022! The festival is once again a hybrid model with a full lineup for in-person attendees and a reduced lineup for virtual festival attendees. Once again, we cover as much of the festivities as possible and our team will be similarly divided. Neil Miller, Brad Gullickson and Lisa Gullickson will be on the ground in Texas, hoping not to run afoul of the authoritarian, fascist state, while Will DiGravio and I will be safely covering from afar.

There are nearly a hundred titles at this year’s festival, from critically acclaimed releases like decision to leave Y The Banshees of Inshirin to documentaries like king on screen Y living with chucky to classic shark horrors like blue shark Y attack to comedies like sick of myself Y smoking causes cough weird things like Birdemic 3: Sea Eagle Y All up and full of worms. Fantastic Fest is literally a festival for all tastes.

Read on for our most anticipated/recommended movies and events at Fantastic Fest 2022!


The 12 most anticipated films of Fantastic Fest 2022

bad city

Fantastic Fest 2022: Bad City

While Fantastic Fest is known for featuring all sorts of genre features over the years, from horror and sci-fi to dark comedies and twisted dramas, they also often host some stellar action finds. This year sees a few contenders, including South Korea. Wolf Hunting Projectbut it is bad city that makes me dizzy. Director Kensuke SonomuraThe second film of (after its fantastic debut, Hydra) once again sees him pulling double duty as a fight choreographer, and if you’ve seen him killer babies, Hunt, and many others, you know that’s a very good thing. The story follows a tough cop who is tasked with taking down some vicious criminals, and what follows seems to be a lot of knife fights, shootouts, and beatings. Throw in the fascinating Tak Sakaguchi in a badass supporting role, and I’m in the bag. (steal hunter)


end cut

Fantastic Festival 2022: Final Cut

A cut of the dead remains one of the best screening experiences I’ve had at Fantastic Fest. When the movie was finally released to mass audiences on streaming services and records, I spent six months traveling from friend’s house to friend’s house trying to recreate that screening of FF seeing their stunned reactions. I don’t think this French remake can achieve the same effect, but I’m very curious to see how they reimagine Shin’ichirô Ueda’s original gonzo ode to cinema. Making things even a little weirder is that end cut is led by The artist‘s Michel Hazanavicius. Hey. I can’t reconcile those two vibes, but again, I’m looking forward to seeing how this all plays out. Also, end cut was meant to play at this year’s Sundance, but when the film festival went online, Hazanavicius canceled the screenings. Respect. If it’s something like A cut of the dead, you just have to play in front of a crowd. (Brad Gullickson)


give me mercy

give me mercy

As an unapologetic horror music fan, I feel compelled (if not compelled) to do a blurb on Fantastic Fest’s solo musical, Give me mercy!of the writer/director Amanda Kramer. Disco superstar Sissy St. Clair basks in the glitz of taping her own TV special. That is until a shadowy figure begins to stalk her, giving her an alternate meaning of triple threat! From the plot synopsis, I’m going to cautiously state that it could be a version of Phantom of the opera – the diva gets a creepy pattern that eventually drives her crazy, but maybe with a bit more cutting edge. The trailer appears to be teetering precariously on the precipice of cheesy and embarrassing, but, as we know from ladyworld (2018), that’s Amanda Kramer’s happy place. (Lisa Gullickson)


kids vs aliens

kids vs aliens

the V/H/S anthology franchise is now five films deep, and 2013 V/H/S/2 still the best installment. The big hit of that entry is “Safe Haven,” obviously, but the other three shorts are still a lot of fun. that includes jason eiener‘s “Slumber Party Abduction,” and now Eisener and co-writer John Davis have expanded it into their own feature film. Two groups of kids, some punk teens and some imaginative tweens see their feud interrupted by an invasion of vicious aliens. Chaos ensues. The short’s singular drawback was the utterly cruel final shot of the family dog, but I’m happy to report that in addition to dropping the found footage angle, Eisener also wisely left the dog out of the film entirely. (steal hunter)


Eleanor will never die

Eleanor will never die

I may be an irredeemable sentimentalist, but I’m also a fan of movies about cinema: the more maudlin and belly button, the better. In Eleanor will never diedirector Martika Ramirez Escobar pays enthusiastic homage to Filipino action movies of the 1970s and 1980s and the women who dared to make them. Leonor is a retired screenwriter who discovers that she has one last story that she is dying to tell. Her son, however, wants her to focus less on her stocky, well-oiled protagonist, Ronwaldo, and more on being a more conventional old lady. I had the privilege of seeing Eleanor will never die at Sundance, and it gave me a roundhouse kick to the senses. It is about the passion, the pain and the healing power of cinema. (Lisa Gullickson)


Lynx/Oz

Lynch Oz

Since the release of his 2010 documentary The people against George Lucas, filmmaker Alexander O Philippe has built his filmography around exploring the relationships between audiences and Alfred Hitchcock’s iconic filmmakers (78/52) to Ridley Scott (Memory: The Origins of Alien) to William Friedkin (Jump of faith). His latest is an exploration of David Lynchthe obsession of The Wizard of Oz which promises appearances from John Waters, David Lowery and Karyn Kusama. That sounds like a delicious fall. (Neill Miller)


The menu

The menu

Sometimes all you want in a movie is delicious porn food, dark laughs, and a wicked comment about the class. If that’s your mood mylod brand‘s The menu looks ready to whet your appetite. Anya Taylor-Joy and Nicholas Hoult play a couple invited to an exclusive island restaurant where a legendary chef (Ralph Fiennes) is preparing an epic and one-of-a-kind meal for them and other esteemed guests. A straight horror movie would make this a simple cannibalism story, but Mylod and writers Seth Reiss and Will Tracy seem to have much richer goals in mind. (steal hunter)


Wolf Hunting Project

Wolf Hunting Project

As mentioned in the bad city previous comment, Fantastic Fest knows how to present action gems from all over the world. Combine that with South Korea’s high consistency when it comes to delivering exciting action movies, and you just know that kim hong-seon‘s Wolf Hunting Project it’s going to be a bombshell. Audiences of Midnighter at TIFF reported that this is one of the bloodiest movies they’ve seen in recent years, and that’s no small feat considering the likes of The sadness Y scary 2 they are also shedding gallons of blood. The film is set on a freighter carrying dangerous prisoners and…something else. (steal hunter)


secret projections

Fantastic Fest Screening

fantastic festival

Fantastic Fest has a long, wonderful and strange history of Secret Screenings. From some legendary screenings early in the festival’s history (there will be blood Y Bread of Labyrinth) to some extremely strange choices (RoboGeisha Y hell driver) to those who came out of left field and melted all the brains in the room (Pull apart Y Good night mom), these secret screenings are always the hottest ticket to the festival. Can 2022’s return to a major in-person festival deliver surprise screenings that rise to the level of The lighthouse either i saw the devil? We certainly look forward to it. (Neill Miller)


ultraman shin

ultraman shin

Ultraman gets the shin godzilla treatment? Sold out. Director shinjihiguchi It retains the delicious cheese found in the classic Japanese TV show, but seeks to add modern purpose to kaiju antics. Acting alongside drive my carHidetoshi Nishijima’s Hidetoshi Nishijima is writer/editor Hideaki Anno, portraying the massive silver protector through motion capture. ultraman shin does not address environmental hazard. Instead, Higuchi and Anno consider how our love of 1960s-era monster mashes possibly inspired a cultural fetishization of the military. Explosions “Yay!” on the big screen. Explosions “Boo!” In the real world. What responsibility does the moviegoer have for the infernal environment that surrounds him? (Brad Gullickson)


King Solomon

King Solomon

It’s not Fantastic Fest without rescuing some movies from oblivion. King Solomon is a great seventies funk action extravaganza that came straight from the skull of the producer, writer, director and star. salt watts. The narrative involves a murdered princess, the CIA, and an oil kingpin. Good good good. What’s more exciting is how those plot mechanisms were achieved on a shoestring budget, using properties that Watts already owned as locations, as well as supplying the wardrobe directly from his closet. King Solomon hits screens with a crisp restoration by boutique dealer, Deaf Crocodile. (Brad Gullickson)


unicorn wars

unicorn wars

Call me nutty, but the palace of my mind is a corner of broken down Victorian caddy at the intersection of cute and creepy. And guess what? Alberto Vasquez‘s unicorn wars looks right up my artfully cobwebbed alley. His eight-and-a-half-minute short film, “Unicorn Blood,” starring Toxic Bear Moffy and his twin, Gregorio, is a translucent, twisted, water-colored, candy-coated, repulsive fairy tale. But, from the trailer, his feature-length extrapolation, unicorn wars, looks like a much more saturated and specific takedown of the animated fantasy-adventure genre for kids. As much as I would have liked to see Vasquez’s trademark illustration style expanded into an irreverent and mind-blowing 90-minute fantasy film, I look forward to the nauseating nostalgia of unicorn wars. (Lisa Gullickson)


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Rob Hunter has been writing for Film School Rejects since before you were born, which is strange considering he’s so young. He is our chief film critic and associate editor and lists ‘Broadcast News’ as his favorite movie of all time. Feel free to say hi if you see him on Twitter. @FakeRobHunter.

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