Best For Film Presents 2 – the aftermath

Well, looks like we did it again. Last week saw the second incarnation of Best For Film Presents…, our immediately legendary film club, and Twitter has been alive ever since with joyful testimonials, chucklesome anecdotes and lighthearted threats of bloody recrimination. Our theme this month was shorts, and we were thrilled to be able to offer three films made by various members of the Best For Film writing team. (If you just shivered with longing at the words ‘Best For Film writing team’, why not join us?) So, here’s what you missed.

The evening got off to a cracking start thanks to the tireless efforts of the Genesis Cinema gang, particularly manager Ally and head barman Ali (you get used to it). On our special cocktail list for the evening were an outrageously cheap caipirinha, the short and sexy Brazilian cocktail, and a tall, fruity DVB, invented specially for the occasion. Why ‘DVB’? You’ll find out later. We kicked off the programme of events with Mike, an ultrashort film directed by veteran BFFer Cal King and starring our very own Duncan Vicat-Brown and Florence Vincent. It’s based on the premise that maybe zombies spend so much time chasing people because they really want a hug, which is clearly the best idea ever. Wishing you’d seen it now? Consider yourself catered for:

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Isn’t that wonderful? We followed up this screening and each of the others with an interview, videos of which will be available onsite very soon. More importantly, however, Mike was followed by an acoustic set from the legendary Felix Hagan, time-travelling troubadour and purveyor of peerlessly passionate songs. We can’t really capture the sheer grandeur of having him perform a ten minute beat saga about the First World War on what is, alas, only a website, so here’s the video for his latest song with his group The Family. See if you can spot another BFF stalwart among the disciples!

Maybe if Jesus had lightened up a bit and tossed a few doughnuts around he wouldn’t have ended up nailed to that tree, eh? There’s a message there, kids! And vicars. Anyway, on to our second film of the evening. You’re probably familiar with the work of Bustabowl Productions through their superb debut feature The Better Man, which premiered at the Genesis just a few months back. We were honoured to be instrumental in the completion of Cooks, a film shot three years ago but only completed in the last fortnight after we expressed an interest in screening it. Directed by Matt Tindall and Josh Bennett and written by Tom McInnes and Richard Wallace (we think that’s right), the story of TV chefs Adrian and Andy (David Sykes and McInnes) and their spectacular fall from grace is creatively obscene and endlessly watchable. We can’t show you the whole film, but here’s the opening scene – you miss out by seconds on Duncan Vicat-Brown’s inspired supporting role. Yes, him again.

Once the audience had spent twenty minutes asking the Bustabowl boys incoherent questions (“What happened to the gypsy?”), we led our troupe of dancing rats into the netherlands of the Best For Film Quiz. Last month’s quiz was largely predicated on everyone else emulating the Best For Film team’s habit of memorising Nicolas Cage trivia, but for the August contest we made things more interesting by splitting the focus – as well as our time-honoured ‘guess the film from its stupid foreign title’ round, we offered a round devoted to Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and a gruesome catalogue of death scenes curated by our resident horror columnist Duncan Vicat-Brown (look out for the next instalment of Abattoir Blues later this week, gore fans!). In fact, given that he’d managed to appear in all three of the films on offer, we went the whole hog and threw in a round about Duncan as well. AND we made him a drink (see above). We didn’t have time to show this mildly homophobic techno remix of his main scene in Cooks, but we do now so that’s alright.

Once the spot prize cakes had been distributed and the Quiz-Winning Dicks had claimed their prize as two-time quiz champions, it was time for the final film of the evening. Directed and written by Jamie Drew with appearances from our very own Janina Matthewson and (obviously) Duncan Vicat-Brown, haunting/housing department crossover flick Anna vs. the Dead took us two days to get working – and even then it was a bit out of sync. Since it’s a truly cracking film and you won’t have got the full effect even if you did come along, we’re pleased to present the entire short below. Fun fact: the noise at the beginning is a massively slowed-down female orgasm!

And that, as the impressively waterproof John said in A.A. Milne’s ‘Happiness’, is that. We have yet to announce the theme for Best For Film Presents 3, although we can tell you this: it’ll be on September 10th, and there’s a strong chance that you’ll be acacited about the film we’ll be showing. Acascuse me? Yes, we did say acacited…

Huge thanks as always to the Genesis, who have basically recreated Eden by putting a cinema, a cocktail bar and a pie shop in the same building. We’re also very grateful to our directors Jamie, Cal, Matt and Josh, our interviewees Cal, Florence, Duncan, Matt, Tom, Richard, Duncan, Jamie, Janina, Adam and Duncan, the incomparably organised Ella Risbridger and the sickeningly talented Felix Hagan. See you all next time!

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