If you’re going to enjoy a horror film festival, there is no better way than Telluride’s Horror Show.
Day 3 of the Telluride Horror Show was by far the best. It also appeared to be the most successful as it had several sell-out performances.
My day began with The Boxtrolls, a stop-motion animation film about an orphaned boy who must save his family of trolls from being exterminated by a group of characters obsessed with cheese and power, in that order. Not only was this film incredibly charming and entertaining, but it was followed by an engaging presentation from Mark Shapiro of animation studio LAIKA of how the film was made.
I followed up The Boxtrolls with Backcountry, a film about two campers stalked by a black bear through a Canadian wilderness. Going into this film, I was told a number of times that Backcountry was considered one of Canada’s scariest films. This film could become the black bear version of jaws.
The day concluded with The Babadook, a fairy tale-like film about a little boy who must save his mother from a monster. The film ends with an unexpected twist that cements the film’s storybook quality. Make no mistake, even though I compare this film to a fairytale, parents should watch this film before showing it to their children due to content that might scare or confuse their children.
The Telluride Horror Show is a wonderful way to experience the horror film genre. The venues are warm and eclectic (though, lighting in the Nugget Theater was at times too bright and the sound system in the Sheridan Opera House strained). The movie selection is smart and entertaining, and the lineup astutely designed to start lighter in the mornings, building up on thrills, horror, and suspense as the day ages. The audience couldn’t be beat—curious and enthusiastic, with no reservations about making new acquaintances or friends. Because the audience is so engaged and derives from places outside Telluride, more social events would make the experience even better. Still, there are ample avenues for entertainment outside the show’s venues, all within a few blocks of the theaters: chilling over coffee or tea at The Steaming Bean, watching football at Brown Dog Pizza, shooting pool at the New Sheridan Hotel bar, catching a gondola ride, or hanging out in one of the other nearby bars or restaurants. If you’re going to enjoy a horror film festival, there is no better way than Telluride’s Horror Show. | Ashby Walters