Get yourself a goregasm! August 24, 2015Posted by Editor in Horror, Other news, Sweden.
Tags: fact book, indie, Printed matter
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In Sweden a group of horror film aficionados have joined forces to write and publish a horror film fanzine on paper (gasp!). Nordic Fantasy spoke to the chief editor.
In the 90s, yours truly was a paper fanzine editor. At the same time, I also worked for radio stations, the ephemeral media of its time. For example, I interviewed Julie Ege and reviewed Norway’s first independent splatter cult film, Bread & Cirkus. This was before the internet made paper oldfashioned, but I too segued over to the internet. Us chief editors between, nowadays it is not common that print fanzines see the light of day. Even though layout tasks can easily be done at home and printing is relatively cheap now that the old printing presses are not part of the equation, print fanzines have succumbed to websites, blogs, online forums, social media and email newsletters. However, in technologically advanced Sweden a team of horror hounds still enjoy the tangible format.
The first issue of the English-language Goregasmic came out in May and included interviews with such underground heroes as Zebediah Gammack, Alex Visani and Nils Härgestam ((whose upcoming film is called Mutant Apocalypse in Drugfuck Deathcamp), and the second edition, a H.P. Lovecraft special, landed in the mailboxes this month. But why? The fanzine’s editor Greigh Johanson knows.
Nordic Fantasy: Goregasmic, a horror film fanzine in Sweden, in the English language. How come you started a print fanzine about horror movies?
Greigh Johanson: I’ve always been interested in forwarding filmtips to like-minded people and in 2009 I started my first blog Surreal Goryfication – an inspiration I got from Ronny Carlsson and Preston Carnell of Filmbizarro. Over the years, when I had the blog, I also went through a few lectures and had random people dropping their chins. It was a very fun experience to argue about and people told me how sick in the head they thought I was, because I was able to be fascinated by extreme films and have it as a hobby. “It’s only serial killers who like this kind of weird stuff” they said. It was the most frequent comment among the adult audience, haha.
After a few attempts to boot various blogs (both in Swedish and English languages), I met Tomas Larsson – founder of Horrophobic Fanzine. He thought that I handled myself well in the reviews I made and it was actually director Jonas Wolcher‘s suggestion that Tomas and I should work together to revive Horrophobic. I therefore chose to put away the blogging and focus wholeheartedly on the magazine.
But something happened in the meantime and Tomas lost the desire, and his interest to continue fell apart. During that year we made two issues together, and after the fourth and final issue of Horrophobic I fully took over the controls. I decided to merge my early blog-concept together with a physical magazine and renamed it Goregasmic Cinema.
NF: Who makes up the Goregasmic team?
Greigh: Goregasmic serves as a community for all like-minded, and we welcome anyone to write reviews for us any time. But we who control Goregasmic is Greigh Johanson and Tim Nordstedt (with Tomas Larsson as producer. So he isn’t all gone.)
NF: Do you have some kind of special concept for the fanzine?
Greigh: Goregasmic is a mixed concept of independent films AND music, so not only films (this is to attract a larger audience within two frames we are truly passionate about). There is no profit concept with what we do. We are working with Goregasmic as a hobby, standard equal fellowship and sociability. We do this because we live for music and film.
NF: What kind of films do you cover?
Greigh: Gruesome stuff, films that get the regular film fanatics to turn the contents of their stomachs. Stuff that government agencies worldwide would ban in real life. Films that wants to offend you, to disgust and humiliate you [every minute], so that you even wonder why you live as an individual. That’s our thing and we love it.
NF: Do you have a strategy to “beat” the internet?
Greigh: We’re not looking to compete with anyone or anything. The secret that everyone may not know is that we’re writing paper zines as a preview to the material we are writing for the blog. The magazine is just a fun thing for an old school-experience and a collectible. Each number is printed only in a limited edition of 150 copies and the buyers are responsible for the cost of printing and shipping. The first issue started up as a crowdfunding event and went through, and all our content that we write in the magazine will later be available for free to read on the blog.
NF: Why an English-language fanzine?
Greigh: When I experimented with various blogs, I decided to test a Swedish variant of the concept I wanted to come forth with. It gave me a picture of how uninterested the Swedish people is about sharing information about extreme underground / indie films. So there is no market in Sweden who can cover our interests. Therefore, we chose to focus on the international market from all over the world and it has proven to be greatly appreciated.
NF: Do you expect to cover more Swedish and Nordic movies than other magazines and fanzines do?
Greigh: We try to take part of Swedish and Nordic films, but it’s not number one priority. We do our best to promote the project if there is something that’s interesting enough.
Anyway, we have thoughts on working with at least one Nordic article per magazine in future issues.
NF: How has the fanzine been received so far, after two editions?
Greigh: It has been surprisingly [well received], we have been in contact with people we never had one single thought about [being in contact with]. People have backed us from locked and private forums on the internet and dealers / retrailers in three different countries want to help us out and sell our magazine, and that’s a good start I think.
NF: What has been the greatest challenges so far?
Greigh: Running a blog is no major difficulty as long as you don’t see it as a job, which we absolutely don’t do. This is a leisure activity without any income and all of us involved have our own jobs and families. We spend late evenings when people around us are sleeping, then get a few hours of sleep and go off to private jobs. The greatest challenge is really to keep the mood when it comes to the paper magazine. When I made the first edition I had no experience whatsoever and it was awkward. But as I always say, we are working to learn and I’ve literally got to do it. The setback came when I was on the penultimate page of the issue and the hard drive crashed, without any back-up. I spent five days full of stress to restore everything that was lost. I was feeling crappy and was burnt out, but I felt like a hero when it was finally completed, this time with three back-ups.
We were all surprised by how appreciated Goregasmic Magazine come to be after the first release, despite a half shitty English in some articles and bad grammar. We have finally got a good proofreader named Jasmine Martinez, who reads and corrects our texts, if a few misspellings and so on show up.
NF: What are your favourite films today, the ones you watch again and again?
Greigh: If I am being honest, I have no such film. It’s enormously difficult to express myself about only one film. I would have to go through a whole library and carefully pick out the titles and raffle between them. Nah, I like to constantly discover new films, even if the old Italian giallos and zombie / cannibal flicks is what I grew up with.
NF: What does a horror film need to include for you to enjoy it?
Greigh: Haha, now the following readers need to give way. Here the entire contents of Goregasmic will be presented: A film must obviously contain a good plot, with an able and clever director and some cool layout and special-effects, of course with traditional and handmade effects. I also like psychological twists where the brain must be involved and thinking, drama-stuff is my thing. No brain-dead Hollywood nonsense, even if I can appreciate that sometimes when I am on a low standard level. But among the twists I talked about, it may well also contain vomit, faeces, urination, necromancy, pedophilia and all that obscure imaginable. That’s what Goregasmic is about in the first place. Stomped fetuses, penetrated carcasses, fist-fucked rape victims and all evil in pure revelation in the world of film.
NF: What films got you into horror in the first place?
Greigh: I watched William Friedkin’s The Exorcist when I was five years old or so. It was the first horror film that still remains as a personal favorite of mine. When I was six I got a doll-fetish during the discovery of the Child’s Play series, and after that it went forward. The big mainstream slasher-characters from the US are, however, a memory from the past, even though I keep them as a nostalgic memory to cherish.
From when I was 13 years old I’ve been in contact with David Jacoby from Swedish Gore Society and Jonas Wolcher’s Too86. That’s about 16 years ago today and I still have good contact with them. During this time I used to hang in Swedish horror forums on the internet and found inspiration from the contemporary horror shop Dark Disc / Dark Entertainment and SubDVD. It was easier for me to find the kind of movies I liked from such stores until I discovered that it is much cheaper to order from Germany and the UK.
NF: What’s your view on Nordic horror?
Greigh: I love Nordic horror, mainly the Swedish ones. I have a manic collection task to get every Swedish horror film on VHS / DVD / Bluray. I have around 150 in the collection right now, so it’s a long way to go to [find all] of them.
NF: As a Swede, how do you explain the lack of major horror films in Sweden?
Greigh: I think we are used to cuddle down in the American Hollywood swamp with cool special effects, repeated actions and stereotypic actors, without any major developments. The Swedes are far too naive and comfortable with what’s already on the market. Our country thus lacks confidence and the sad thing is that we don’t even invest in economic confidence in the Swedish film industry. The few enthusiasts who really deliver the cinematic profession in this country do realize pretty quickly that it’s a tough fight to successfully monetize their profession and therefore they’re turning their asses to the magnificent masses beyond Scandinavian waters. What remains is a bunch of young directors who stomps like stranded gulls and fight their way despite the meager budget they [managed] to save from odd jobs on the side of their hobby.
NF: Where do you think the best underground horror movies come from these days?
Greigh: I think Russia, Brazil, France, Canada, Austria and Italy got the most good underground stuff out there.
NF: Is there an “unusual” country that has some great horror films that few people know about?
Greigh: Oh, another tough question to answer, but I believe that each country has its own unique property when it comes to underground film. But I can not deny that Serbia and Greece has started to open up their eyes to the film industry.
NF: The 2nd edition just came out; what’s your publication plan for the future?
Greigh: As a concept, we usually have different themes for different numbers. In the first issue we focused a lot on the fledgling film company Last Exit Entertainment and in the new number the theme is H.P. Lovecraft, specializing in the films based on his books. The third one will contain a clown-theme, [without saying more]!
Goregasmic is delivered all over the world, the language is English and copies can be ordered from their website.
Quick fall 2015 overview August 23, 2015Posted by Editor in Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Upcoming.
Tags: Distribution, for children, indie, mainstream
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Not sure what to wait for? Too long between premieres? Forgotten that Scandinavia actually has some genre movies? Here’s a quick overview of
what to expect this fall.
This list is not necessarily complete, as new premieres can still be added over the next few weeks and months, but it does give you a fairly good overview of most genre premieres in cinemas this fall. The release dates point to country of origin premieres.
Villmark 2 / Dark woods 2 (horror)
Five contract workers have taken on the task of tracking a huge building for hazardous waste before it’s demolished. They realize that the job is more than a search for asbestos and mercury when they encounter the building’s frightening past. Directed by the original’s director, Pål Øie. Release date: October 9, 2015 (theatres).
Doctor Proctor’s timetub (comedy, fantasy)
Sequel to the successful Norwegian fantasy-comedy Doctor Proctor’s Fart Powder, based on Jo Nesbø’s children’s novel. The love sick Doctor has travelled back in time in an attempt to change the history. Directed by Arild Fröhlich. Release: October 16, 2015 (theatres).
Hevn / Revenge (exploitation)
Previously known as The doll in the ceiling, this rape-revenge drama is directed by Kjersti G. Steinsbø from a novel by Ingvar Ambjørnsen. Jammed in the majestic fjords of Western Norway, Rebekka (38) is looking for revenge. Under a false identity, she seeks out her deceased sister’s rapist and embeds herself into his idyllic family to destroy his life. Release: November 6, 2015 (theatres).
Julekongen: Full rustning / The king of Christmas (fantasy)
Feature sequel to the 2012 pre-Christmas daily drama series Julekongen. Evil reigns in Knight Valley and Christmas has been cancelled. Only the Gran family can save it! Directed by Thale Persen. Release: November 13, 2015 (theatres).
Solan & Ludvig 2 (children’s fantasy)
Solan & Ludvig: From here to Flåklypa is the sequel to the very successfull 2012 animated family comedy Christmas in Flåklypa. Solan gets into trouble when he puts Reodor’s workshop and house up on the table in a bet. Directed by Rasmus A. Sivertsen. Release: December 25, 2015 (theatres).
Evil rising (horror)
Swedish indie feature shot in English. Five paranormal investigators spend a weekend at a haunted mansion to investigate paranormal activity. When one goes missing they realize their lives are in danger. Directed by Jarno Lee Vinsencius. Release date: Fall 2015 (announced, not confirmed).
Escaping the Dead (horror, splatter)
A Danish horror indie. When drug pusher David and his partner in crime Ahmir gets in serious money trouble, they find out that the cocaine they decide to sell have terrible side effects. Directed by Martin Sonntag and Bastian Brinch Pedersen. Release: Halloween 2015 (announced, not confirmed).
Sorgenfri / What we become (horror)
Bo Mikkelsen directs Mille Dinesen, Troels Lyby, Benjamin Engell, Marie Hammer Boda and Mikael Birkkjær in this Danish movie, about an ordinary family which finds themselves under pressure when a virus breaks out in their town. Release: October 10, 2015 (theatres).
Emma og Julemanden / Emma and Santa Claus (children’s fantasy)
A children’s movie about 11 year old Emma, who loves mythological beings. One day she meets Santa Claus and his wife! Directed by Søren Frellesen. Release: October 30, 2015 (theatres).
Distractions (comedy, fantasy)
Distracted by life, Mr. Makkonen misses his engagement party by decades. From the cradle to the grave, life keeps interrupting, not only him, but a tired mother, a doomed superhero and the rest of the comrades. Directed by Aleksi Salmenperä. Release: September 11, 2015 (theatres).
Bunny the killer thing (horror, comedy)
A group of Finnish young adults are heading off to have a fun weekend at a cabin in the dark woods of Finland. The party becomes a game of life and death when suddenly a weird creature attacks from the forest! Directed by Joonas Makkonen. Release: November 6, 2015 (theatres).
Heavysaurs – The Movie (children’s fantasy)
A partly animated live action family adventure about two kids who find five dinosaur creatures that love to eat and play rock music. Directed by Pekka Karjalainen. Release: November 27, 2015 (theatres).