See some of the world's strangest and most unusual flicks at the Boston Underground Film Festival this weekend. This "bacchanalia of sound and vision" celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2018 with another far-out lineup of screenings at the Brattle Theatre and Harvard Film Archive. Here are five movies you have to see at this year's installment, according to festival director and director of programming's Nicole McControversy (and, yes, that's her name).
2018 Boston Underground Film Festival
"Tigers Are Not Afraid"
"Mexican writer/director Issa López is one of the most highly revered women in film south of the border. Her third feature as director, 'Tigers Are Not Afraid,' acknowledges the orphaned children of those murdered by Mexico’s cartels who remain caught in the literal and figurative crossfire of a society under siege. Left behind to fend for themselves, these children must find their own way in a world they did not create and cannot comprehend."
"Top Knot Detective"
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"For a fleeting moment in the '90s, 'Ronin Suiri Tentai' (or 'Deductive Reasoning Ronin') was a cultural phenomenon in Japan. It followed the journey of an Edo-era cop who roamed the land. Each week, he battled with samurai warriors, robots, monsters, time-traveling baseball players and/or his own inner torment. Its writer-director-producer-editor-star Takashi Takamoto was catapulted to fame before quickly spiraling into an ego-fueled abyss of sex, drugs and scandal. Within a year, the show was canceled. And in Australia, the series would become an endearing cult classic known as 'Top Knot Detective.' It is an incredible story – except none of it actually happened."
"The Queen of Hollywood Blvd"
"On her 60th birthday, the proud owner of a Los Angeles strip club finds herself in hot water over a 25 year old debt to the mob, leading her on a downward spiral of violence and revenge through the underbelly of Los Angeles. BUFF is honored and exultant to be presenting the World Premiere of Orson Oblowitz’s 'The Queen of Hollywood Blvd,' a sublime and stylish thrill ride along Tinseltown’s infamous mile-long haven of debauchery and debasement."
"Young Gaza lives in a small town on Turkey’s Aegean coast and dreams of escaping the soul-crushing drudgery of the family business: smuggling refugees. Studious and still imbued with a youthful sense of optimism and innocence, Gaza is pulled deeper and deeper into a dark, immoral world of human suffering and exploitation by his domineering father; will he avoid becoming the monster he’s being raised to be? Boasting screen-shattering performances from first timer Hayat Van Eck and brilliant actor Ahmet Mümtaz Taylan, Daha is the kind of debut that happens only once a decade."
"What starts as a weekend getaway between a married man and his mistress quickly devolves into a deadly game of cat and mouse when his hunting buddies arrive. Director Coraline Fargeat revamps and recalibrates the rape-revenge trope from a female perspective, creating a violent, visceral monomyth about the rebirth and survival of a woman wronged seeking to even the score."
If you go:
Through March 25, various locations, bostonunderground.org