As October approaches the evil geniuses of Maine’s film community are putting the final touches on their contributions to this year’s “Damnationland.” The Maine horror anthology institution, which returns to terrify us all next month, annually gathers together the best of the best in Maine movie-making and turns them loose to create the best short horror films their insidious imaginations can unearth. This year’s lineup (the sixth annual “Damnationland”) promises the series’ signature blend of terrifying, unique, pine-scented horrors of all kinds. Having already profiled filmmakers Christian Matzke (“Last Flight Of The Freya 7”) and George Dalphin (“Neurophreak”), it’s time to talk to Krystal Kenville, creator and screenwriter of upcoming “Damnationland” film “Misandry.”
Q: So, traditional spoiler warnings in place, what is “Misandry?”
A: There’s a town in Maine that’s been completely shut off since the 50s. The women in the town are really messed up in terms of jealousy. Anyone who speaks to their men – husbands, sons, grandfathers, whatever – they’ll kill them. So when a young couple stops off in the town on their honeymoon to use the restroom at the local diner, one of the women in the town sees him… things do not go well for them. It’ll be funny and thrilling and disgusting and awesome, hopefully. [Laughs.]
Q: What was the impetus behind your movie?
A: The majority of “Damnationland” films, or Maine horror films, are zombies or apocalypse or crazy people in the woods killing campers. So I wanted to do something totally different, but still about Maine. I was inspired by a scene in Jeff Greicci’s film “A Bell In The Yard” from the first “Damnationland,” where you go underneath the ground and see all the layers – it just clicked. Originally my idea was darker, but the awesome interstitial shorts Through The Door Productions did for last year’s “Damnationland” made me realize how I could make it a comedy as well as horror. I brought in amazing co-writers Anna Cranage Conathan and Ty Gowen (and director Tim Lazimov), and Anna said we could turn the men into the opposite of “Stepford Wives,” put them in plaid, and make it a comedy that’s gruesome and funny at the same time.
Q: What brought you to “Damnationland” this year?
A: They asked me! [Co-founder] Allen Baldwin called and asked if I’d be interested and, literally while we were on the phone, I Facebooked the team I’ve been working with for 10 years, and in five minutes I had the whole team set up. Allen was tickled pink. Honestly, I’m so proud to be involved with “Damnationland.” Everyone was so supportive, too – Maine has a very close film community, but we can be a little clique-y. So I thought, “let’s pull out a couple of people from here and there,” and it worked out amazingly. It shows how cool the film industry is here. You can’t learn if you don’t bring new people into it – it’s how we get the best product out of it, to represent our state.
“Misandry” will be part of this year’s “Damnationland,” which will have its world premiere on Friday, October 16 at the State Theatre.
Congress Square Park | space538.org/events/ghostbusters
Wednesday: “Ghostbusters.” Still one of the funniest comedies ever, this 1984 classic starring Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Sigourney Weave, and the late Harold Ramis gets the free, outdoor treatment and more! The organizers are calling this and “interactive” screening, meaning everyone gets a noisemaker and is encouraged to yell things at the screen in sort of a “Rocky Horror Picture Show” experience. Screening starts at dusk. Don’t get slimed.
Nickelodeon Cinema | patriotcinemas.com
Wednesday: “Attack On Titan: Part 1.” The biggest thing (literally and figuratively) to come out of Japan this year, this blockbuster monster movie, based on the manga by Hajime Isayama, concerns an apocalyptic Japan where towering monsters are only kept at bay by the walls of a massive mega-city. Then an even bigger monster shows up, forcing the cast of young heroes to attack something that could use Godzilla for a soccer ball. Look for part 2 next month!