Posted Jul 11, 2010 in Music | 0 Comments


Growing up in Montreal, no one can contest how the city comes alive in the summer. Whether it’s the Jazz fest, Just 4 laughs or any of the 1001 events thrown in this city. I got a little tired of all the activities and kind of figured that Montreal had all these festivals to keep it alive. Don’t get me wrong. There’s a spirit that doesn’t quit here, but let’s face it, it’s a mother… Trying to get a job. But during a summer of being unemployed and depressed I found the perfect way to drown my sorrows: FANTASIA!

Since ‘96, this festival has been making me call in sick from my odd jobs, skip bbqs and dates, and has helped me drift to another world, whether frightening, action filled, dramatic, or fantastical.

It’s an annual feast that I don’t forget. I’ve even helped sponsor the event in the past just so I could be involved somehow.

It’s now the biggest of its kind in North America showcasing imaginative cinema from around the world. With over 77,000 attendees a year, they’ve wowed us by presenting never seen before films and North American premieres. But the beauty of it all is that they support local, home grown talent. Not only do you get to see your movie of choice but you’ll see short films that are just as interesting as the features. Even the commercials get me going.
In 1997 they premiered “FUDOH” from Takashi Miike, who has since become a crowd favorite. If you see his name in the catalogue, buy your tickets quickly!

Another reason why this festival is special is that you can actually meet some of the actors, producers and directors and ask them questions.
Past guests include Kiyoshi Kurosawa, John Carpenter, Udo Kier, Shunji Iwai, Eli Roth, Kang Jegyu, Vincenzo Natali, Lau Ching-Wan, Larry Fessenden, Hideo Nakata, and Takashi Ishii.

Film buffs and producers are always encouraged to submit their films free of charge. Mad respect!
The festival has become a tad harder to obtain tickets for, only cause they sell out! Locals I’ve spoken to who know nothing about the fest are always surprised about how many people line up to buy in advance. Easily explained. TOURISTS! Who would have thought the freakiest movies around would be a touristic draw for people. Enough for people to have their eyes glued to the site waiting for the annual program of films and booking their days off.

The peeps at Fantasia are one step ahead and now offering accomodation packages, which suits me fine cause I’m tired of having to pillow my tub cause there’s no more room on my floors, bed, or sofa.
I kid.

The prices range from the high rollers to the penny pinchers. Though I work now and can afford a nice hotel, I’m ghetto through and through and will always love a hostel.

So do yourself a favour, visit the site, look at the trailers, and plan your excuses.
It runs from now till the 28th of July, and tickets can be bought online at the Admission network or at the Main Hall building of Concordia University. So run, children, run and see what triggers your fears or imagination.

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