SUFF is a Sydney gem. The annual weekend of warped, outré and extreme cinema at the Factory Theatre goes to places the other festivals rarely do, exploring the outer limits of what it means to be human, zombie or mutant excrement demon.
The festival features films interrogating democracy, the media, the history of experimental film and the odd beliefs of people on the fringes of society. There are sessions of short films grouped around the themes of weird sex, psychedelia, documentary, Australian and just plain What-The-Fuck.
Last year they introduced a Saturday Morning All You Can Eat Cartoon Cereal Party, playing strange and retro cartoons and serving Froot Loops and Rice Krispies. This year they are adding a Late Night Cartoon Cereal Party on the Friday night and a 16mm Soirée celebrating the analogue medium. Also, direct from the US, comes the Found Footage Festival – the live comedy act that screens unbelievable kitsch videos from yesteryear.
But let’s get down to brass tacks inserted into flesh. What are the most gross, disgusting and twisted movies they are screening this year at the Sydney Underground Film Festival? Here’s our top ten, roughly ranked according to how likely you are to be pushed to your limits. Oh and before you scroll down? Not Safe For Work. You’ve been warned guys.
Sydney Underground Film Festival 2017 runs September 14-17.
This four-part body horror comedy depicts the survivors of an earthquake that has levelled Los Angeles and the mutations they have undergone. Highlights include a talking boil, a large bug that lives inside a doctor’s anus, a man who constantly needs to defecate who… I’m sorry, we feel sick talking about this film. If you dare watch it, it’s the closing night gala.
2 Meatball Machine Kodoku
The sequel to the 2006 Japanese splatter film Meatball Machine sees the return of the ‘necroborgs’ – humans infected by alien parasites and turned into mutated monsters. If a lot of blood spurting everywhere is your bag, book your tickets post haste.
A drug addicted couple inspired by Mephistopheles go on a bender and become the biggest assholes in New York. Fisting and shit demons feature in a very low budget film that is pretty perverse and disgusting.
4 The Evil Within
The late heir to the J Paul Getty oil fortune, Andrew Getty, spent a decade making this horror movie about a man whose demonic reflection inspires him to kill. Getty was addicted to methamphetamines and it shows: the film combines Lynchian surrealism with Tommy Wiseau-worthy amateurishness to spellbinding effect.
5 Tragedy Girls
Two small-town high school girls who love social media and killing people capture another serial killer in this US horror comedy that riffs on Mean Girls, Clueless and Scream.
6 The Crazies
A cult classic from 1973 directed by the recently deceased George a Romero (Night of the Living Dead), The Crazies depicts a biological weapon that infects the water supply of a small town turning the inhabitants homicidal.
7 Samurai Rauni
Japanese samurai tropes are transposed to a small Finnish coastal town in this wild mash-up from director Mika Rättö. A drunken sailor-samurai causes havoc leading to several assassination attempts and a mission of revenge.
Damn, this one’s not even funny. Documentary maker Ulrich Seidl followed a bunch of European tourists in Africa hunting magnificent wild animals for sport. What kind of sick person shoots a zebra for fun? The answer offers a dark, deep dive into the worst side of human nature.
9 Dave Made a Maze
Not twisted so much as twisty, this multi-award winning film has an irresistible premise: a guy builds a cardboard labyrinth inside his house but has become trapped inside his own creation. His girlfriend and a team of rescuers must overcome traps to rescue him. More than 30,000 feet of cardboard went into the building of the sets.
Written by: Nick Dent at Time Out Sydney