Fantastic Fest Day 1

The annual Fantastic Fest film festival gets underway in Austin this week. It’s the largest genre-based film festival in the United States and was founded in 2005 by Tim League of Alamo Drafthouse and Harry Knowles of Ain’t It Cool News. We sent special correspondent Brennan Foster on a quest to hunt down the weirdest films, the coolest parties and the biggest star sightings he could find. Here’s his first festival report. Be sure and check back throughout the week for more updates.

Shaking off the smoke from Texas wildfires and roadside rib shacks, I pulled into the South Lamar Alamo Drafthouse parking lot on a hot Thursday for bearded men in black shirts. But meat and heat was the day’s overriding theme.

This is because the festival’s premiere event was Dutch director Tom Six’s Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence.

The first film has dedicated fans; one of the Drafthouse’s projectionists tattooed the infamous first sequence diagram across his feet. Such ardent appreciation allowed Mr. Six to achieve something wholly appropriate: a movie with No. 2 in the title.

For anybody who does not yet know what a Human Centipede refers to, stay happy, click away and whistle a merry tune, for even a brief description will rape your mind.

Fans of the first film are free to appreciate it and argue for its worth. Of course, fans of the first film are also likely to volunteer for a “Poop-Sausage Eating Contest.”

While I did not entertain seeing the sequel, I admit that the build-up for it was a blast; undoubtedly, Mr. Six has created an historic meme with a knowingly humorous and sadistic sensibility.

Sadly, the audience reaction to HC2 was not positive. It currently holds the lowest audience rating on the festival site, an equally appropriate 2 stars. This will not stop anyone who enjoyed the first film from seeing the sequel, which drops into select theaters on October 7.

And, hey, maybe it will inspire more barbecue feats like the after party’s three roasted pigs sewn ass to mouth on a banquet table. That’s good eatin’.