Feminist horror film collective The Final Girls is back with a second superb short film showcase, bringing a selection of shorts from around the world and some of most exciting new female voices in genre with We Are The Weirdos 2.
Since their first event screened Claire Denis’ Trouble Every Day back in 2016, The Final Girls have staged screenings and events highlighting cult gems like The Craft and Office Killer as well as more recent stand-outs such as Prevenge, The Love Witch and XX. This second instalment of We Are The Weirdos features short films from South Korea, Ireland, the UK, the US, Mexico and Finland, and offers a carefully curated blend of styles, tones and themes.
With We Are The Weirdos 2 currently touring the UK (upcoming locations include London, Newcastle, Glasgow, Manchester and Nottingham, click here for more info), we took the chance to ask co-founders Anna Bogutskaya and Olivia Howe about what’s in store for horror fans.
What can audiences expect from the We Are The Weirdos short selection?
Weird, nightmare-inducing images. Female characters that defy tropes.
Was there anything in particular you were looking for when putting this collection of shorts together?
We try to look beyond the slick production skills and try to see what it is that the filmmaker is trying to say: are they saying something new, something personal that no one else out there is tapping into? And, as programmers and film buffs, we’re also always putting the new work we see in context, so we’re always looking out for filmmakers that are breaking the established rules and conventions of the genre.
What is the process like of sourcing and selecting short films?
Thankfully, there are so many to choose from! We approach it as a two-part process. On one hand, we open up submissions, which are always free, so that we can get the films in from filmmakers who we might not be aware of. And, at the same time, we are constantly scouring film festivals around the world and receiving recommendations from friends and colleagues about films. So it’s, ultimately, a combined effort of submissions and curation.
Is there something in particular that you love about the short film format?
The sheer creativity that the limited running time generates. Sometimes, a well-told, effective story told in five minutes is a lot more impressive than a feature length film.
This is probably an impossible question but do you have a personal favourite of the shorts selected, or is there one in particular that you’re excited for audiences to see?
We both have different favourites. Anna’s is Blood Runs Down, because it’s steeped in Southern Gothic traditions and creates a creeping sense of dread and oppressive atmosphere that’s very difficult to achieve. Olivia’s is Cerulia .
There is an incredible range of subjects and styles in the shorts selected but it does sometimes still feel like people are keen to designate “horror films by women” as a subgenre. Do you feel like we’re moving past this point?
It does somewhat depend on each filmmaker — being a female filmmaker doesn’t necessarily mean you’d want to explore female-centric themes in your work! Creative interests and themes shouldn’t be determined by one’s gender.
It’s always exciting to see what The Final Girls are going to bring us. What’s coming up next?
Witches! We’ve been working on a programme exploring the figure of the witch across film and television for a while now, and we can’t wait to unleash a film programme, and more…
We Are The Weirdos 2 is currently touring the UK. For information on dates and the films included, visit The Final Girls website.