Thursday 14 October
7PM: Alien on Stage
(2020) UK 83mins
Dirs: Danielle Kummer, Lucy Harvey
A group of DIY, Dorset-based bus drivers remake Alien for the stage, all on a shoestring budget, and triumphantly take to the West End stage. This behind-the-scenes documentary catalogues the journey from rehearsals to the first night and will leave you grinning from ear to ear and cheering the underdogs on to victory.
9.30PM: The Deep House
(2021) France/Belgium 85mins
Dirs: Alexandre Bustillo, Julien Maury
Camille Rowe, James Jagger.
An underwater ghost story! Reminiscent of the legendary opening scene from Dario Argento's Inferno, the directors of the envelope-pushing Inside plunge you into the depths of a submerged haunted house to create a literally immersive horror experience.
Friday 15 October
2.45PM: The Queen of Spades
(1949) UK 96mins
Dir: Thorold Dickerson
Anton Walbrook, Edith Evans
Up from the vaults, the archive at Mayhem opens its doors to present one of the least seen British horror films of yesteryear – and one in need of resurrection – a dark gem of British Gothic cinema. A gambler becomes obsessed with an old lady, said to have sold her soul to the devil in order to win at cards.
4:45PM: The Show
(2020) UK 115mins
Dir: Mitch Jenkins
Tom Burke, Ellie Bamber
A noir-fantasy set in Northampton, written by comics legend Alan Moore. Tom Burke (Only God Forgives, Mank) plays the mysterious Fletcher Dennis, newly arrived in town to find a missing man called Mitchum, but encountering much more in the way of offbeat characters and magical intrigues. Trippy, multi-layered and shot through with droll humour, The Show is an idiosyncratic delight.
8PM: Night Drive
(2019) USA 82mins
Dirs: Brad Burah, Meghan Leon
AJ Bowen, Sophie Dalah
Bowen (House Of The Devil) plays a ride-share driver whose life begins to fall apart when he picks up his last passenger and accidentally hits a pedestrian. Quirky, smart and a genuinely surprising sci-fi black-comedy indie that hits all the right notes and deserves a life on the big screen.
(2021) S Korea 103mins. With English subtitles
Dir: Oh-Seung Kwon
Jin Ki-joo, Park Hoon, Wi Ha-joon
A psychopath is interrupted in his latest crime by a young woman - and so begins a non-stop, all night, life or death chase. Director Kwon adds unique detail to this cat-and-mouse thriller – a deaf protagonist unable to find anyone who will help her, a serial killer who hides behind respectable identities, all the while ratcheting up the tension and twists.
Saturday 16 October
12PM: The Spine of Night
(2021) USA 93mins
Dirs: Philip Gelat, Morgan Galen King
Richard E Grant, Lucy Lawless, Patton Oswalt
All-animated dark fantasy horror - offering a psychedelic, hallucinogenic, over-the-top epic narrative of outrageous violence, ancient gods and courageous heroes, set in a land of magic and mysticism. Though drawing on the works of Frank Frazetta (Conan) and Ralph Bakshi (Fire & Ice), The Spine of Night is unlike anything we've ever screened.
(2021) Sweden 78mins. With English subtitles.
Dir: Freda Kempff
Cecilia Milocco, Krister Kern
A woman leaves a psychiatric ward after a breakdown and finds herself placed alone in a new apartment where she begins to hear mysterious knocking sounds. Knocking is a stylish, haunting and intense psychological portrait that deserves to be seen on the big screen.
4.15PM: Mayhem Short Film Showcase
International 120mins. Partly subtitled.
A selection of the scary, weird and wonderful from around the world and closer to home… showcasing the best up and coming talent. Mayhem Film Festival started out as a short film event and keeps its roots fed on the blood of new filmmakers.
7.30PM: Spiritwalker [UK Premiere]
(2021) S Korea 108mins. With English subtitles.
Dir: Jae-Keun Yoon
Kye-Sang Yoon, Yong-Woo Park, Ji-Yeon Lim
Genre-bending, high-octane sci-fi thriller that never lets up for the entire running time. From the producers of The Gangster, The Cop, The Devil comes a new experience in action – a man wakes up in a different body every 12 hours, each time forced to discover who he is - all the while being pursued by a secret organisation. He must find his way back into his real body before it's too late!
10PM: Phantom of the Paradise
(1974) USA 91mins
Dir: Brian De Palma
William Finley, Jessica Harper
Our Mayhem Midnight Movie is a genuine cult-classic mixing the plots of The Phantom of the Opera and Faust, adding a great score, cool songs (and Suspiria's Jessica Harper belting out the best of them) and De Palma (Carrie, Blow Out) at his most stylish and stylised – a genuine midnight movie masterpiece.
Sunday 17 October
12PM: Get the Hell Out
(2020) Taiwan 95mins. With English subtitles.
Dir: I.-Fan Wang
Megan Lai, Bruce Hung
Taiwan's parliament becomes a deadly battleground when a virus transforms politicians into bloodthirsty mutant zombies in this hilariously hyperactive, frenetic satire - and the blistering pace and surreal pop-culture references never let up for a single martial-arts moment of mayhem.
Dirs:John Adams, Zelda Adams, Toby Poser
Zelda Adams, Lulu Adams
There's hell to pay when a lonely teenager discovers her family's connections to witchcraft. A ground-breaking new feature from the incredibly creative Adams family – behind the cult movie The Deeper You Dig - occult coming-of-age story Hellbender premiered internationally at Fantasia recently, where it won rave reviews.
4.15PM: The Night Shift [European Premiere]
S Korea 106mins. With English subtitles.
Dir: Ba-Reun Jo
Jun Sung, Hong-Pa Kim.
Looking for inspiration an artist visits a run-down housing estate and interviews the building's caretaker, who has many strange and uncanny tales to tell… but the more he hears, the more his obsession grows… Stylish, funny, dark, and grizzly, this anthology zips from one grim story to the next, weaving them together into a sinister trap.
Sweden 106mins With English subtitles
Dir: Valdimar Jóhannsson
Noomi Rapace, Hilmir Snær Guðnason
A childless couple discover a mysterious newborn on their remote farm in Iceland. Soon they are experiencing the joy of family – but soon family will tear them apart. Strange and daring cinema from Jóhannsson, previously known for his stunning special effects work, here delivering a startling, assured feature debut that builds dread not unlike The Witch to tell a unique folktale rooted in a haunting landscape.
9.30PM: Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes
Japan 70mins. With English subtiles.
Dir: Junta Yamaguchi
Kozunori Tosa, Aki Asakura
"I am the future me. Two minutes into the future." Returning to his flat from work, Kato is surprised by a message from his future self on his TV screen… but soon this strange phenomenon gets chaotically out of hand. Praised by the creator of One Cut of the Dead for its inventiveness, this is a must-see one-take sci-fi comedy and a demonstration of a unique filmmaking process.