Unnamed Footage Festival Serves Up Cryptids and Creeps in Its 2024 Edition First Wave

Found footage fright-fare fanatics, rejoice! The Unnamed Footage Festival is back for its 7th edition, and its first wave selections are a dizzying doozy! The festival runs March 28–31, 2024 in San Francisco. Following is the official press announcement.

The Unnamed Footage Festival is excited to announce the first wave of films for the 7th edition of the Found Footage Horror, First Person POV, and Faux Doc film festival. Every year, our programmers scour the globe for the greatest, weirdest, and most obscure films in the In-World camera genre, and this year is shaping up to be our best and biggest year yet, complete with cryptids, liminal horror, possession and live streaming. 

UFF7 will feature two nights of pre-fest events. On Tuesday March 26th, UFF will present a 10th Anniversary screening of AS ABOVE SO BELOW at Terror Tuesday in collaboration with the Alamo Drafthouse at their New Mission location. Wednesday March 27th will be our first ever badgeholder-only pre-festival event & mixer at the Artists’ Television Access in the Mission district, with details to be announced soon.

Our annual Recalibration Party kicks off opening night on Thursday March 28th, followed by a weekend of in-world camera films, including premieres of HORROR IN THE HIGH DESERT 3: FIREWATCH and the new film from the STRAIGHT EDGE KEGGER filmmakers LOOKY-LOO. Supernatural mystery DO NOT WATCH comes to the festival after its sold out premiere at Screamfest LA, and the final cut of the Timur Bekmambetov produced internet thriller, #BLUE_WHALE will finally be screened after vanishing into obscurity after its 2021 Fantasia Film Festival premiere. MIND BODY SPIRIT is not to be missed on the big screen, a smash hit from the last #UFF24hr virtual festival. More information on the first wave of titles, including FLESH GAMES, FROGMAN, and LIVESCREAMERS is listed below.

The complete schedule and second wave will be announced soon with more premieres, special events, and retro screenings. Badges are on sale now via FilmFreeway.

FIRST WAVE OF UFF FILM SELECTIONS

HORROR IN THE HIGH DESERT 3: FIREWATCH (2024, dir. Dutch Marich)

UFF is proud to present the first theatrical screening of Dutch Marich’s Horror In The High Desert 3: Firewatch. The much anticipated 3rd entry in the Horror In The High Desert series has been cloaked in mystery thus far. UFF has discovered that Firewatch will explore [REDACTED] in the desert of [REDACTED]  and this time [REDACTED] . [REDACTED] [REDACTED].  [REDACTED] [REDACTED]. Always remember that just because you can’t see them doesn’t mean they can’t see you.  

FROGMAN (2023, dir. Anthony Cousins)

On a family vacation, a young boy named Dallas captures footage of a cryptid known as the Loveland Frogman with his video camera. Mocked and accused of faking the sighting, he is haunted by the footage he captured. Years later, Dallas (Nathan Tymoshuk) has grown up to be a filmmaker, and he is determined to film the Frogman once again. 

Frogman isn’t your dad’s faux doc. Frogman is YouTube era Patterson/Gimlin footage shot on Toad Road. Frogman vibrates like The Blair Witch Project if Heather and the boys were after the X-Files’ Flukeman. Frogman’s merch reads FROGMAN FUCKS. And you know what? He does. Catch Frogman on the big screen at UFF followed by a Q&A.

FLESH GAMES (2023, dir. David Dawson)

“FLESH GAMES was a group of virtually unknown “stuntmen” and “comedians” hailing from the mighty cornfields of Northern Illinois. They achieved little to no success. This is their tape…” 

Flesh Games explores a rarely-visited realm of found footage that many dismiss: Reality Stunt Comedy. Flesh Games follows a group of no-name “stuntmen” in their ill-begotten attempt to create a stunt comedy ála 2002’s Jackass: The Movie. While the Jackass crew birthed massive success, Flesh Games’ titular stuntmen fail spectacularly. Watching Flesh Games is like finding an unlabeled VHS tape at a thrift store, hitting play, and feeling a building sense of dread as this group of scarred and tattooed rural backyard skateboarders keep upping the ante and their stunts become increasingly dangerous and bizarre.

LOOKY-LOO (2024, dir. Jason Zink)

An aspiring filmmaker obsessively captures footage everywhere he goes, but his hobby takes a dark turn. As he hones his craft and his crimes begin to escalate, the viewer is trapped watching everything he sees and does through his camera lens. Exploring themes of voyeurism, obsession, and the power of images, Looky-loo is reminiscent of Angst (1983) and Peeping Tom (1960) with a chilling atmosphere and gritty, disturbing imagery. Juxtaposing a horror audience’s enthusiasm for the black glove killer imagery of Giallo film with the cold reality of recorded home invasions, Looky-loo distorts that black glove into a grimy rubber kitchen glove. It is a true meditation on the paralysis and helplessness incited by watching awful acts.

#BLUE_WHALE (2022, dir. Anna Zaytseva)

Rebellious schoolgirl Dana grieves for her younger sister, a once-happy kid who suddenly stepped in front of a train. Desperate to learn what happened, she explores her sister’s online history, discovering a sinister social-media game known as #BLUE_WHALE. This screenlife story from Russian filmmaker Anna Zaytseva delves into global truths about loneliness and insecurity, how young people experience these feelings and seek community online – and what happens when bad actors enter these communities to prey on them. Fans of death games and MTV teen dramas will love this psychological thriller, paced like a rapid doom scroll into insanity. #BLUE_WHALE is a wild ride, often funny, and sometimes a little bit sweet. 

DO NOT WATCH (2023, dir. Justin Janowitz)

Do Not Watch is a cautionary tale of madness that is told through the lens of an unseen Editor who has constructed a film depicting the events surrounding the disappearance of a post-production crew and the growing darkness that drove them insane. A decades-spanning mystery is interwoven across three timelines: a present day documentary; several missing person cases; and scientific research footage from old VHS tapes. At UFF, we always say found footage horror is truly made in the editing room, and Do Not Watch highlights and twists that idea into a supernatural psyop of darkness – this footage worms into your psyche. Mixing media, perspectives, and timelines into a mind-melting smorgasbord of techniques unique to the found footage horror genre – Do Not Watch is as entertaining as it is impressive. 

MIND BODY SPIRIT (2023, dir. Alex Henes, Matthew Merenda)

Following the death of her mysterious estranged grandmother, aspiring yoga influencer Anya begins to research her family history for the first time. But delving into her past is bringing something to life in the present… Now, Anya’s yoga videos are starting to take on a new tone and her already fractured relationships are straining, sending Anya into a terrifying downward (dog) spiral that may have permanent consequences. Mind Body Spirit employs frightening camera movement and incredibly strong performances that when paired with a sharp, smart script elevate the film into a piece that can stand alongside the most authentic, polished, and downright scary films the format has to offer.

LIVESCREAMERS (2023, dir. Michelle Iannantuono)

In this video game live stream-inspired screenlife film, Michael Smallwood (Halloween Kills, Righteous Gemstones) leads a group of popular streamers and one contest winner who unknowingly enter a haunted video game. Now they must work together to survive its trap riddled corridors and weapon wielding enemies. Tensions as well as dormant resentments begin to rise once they realize: when you die in the game… you die in real life.  

Livescreamers is an evolution of its predecessor, 2020’s Livescream, but this sequel features a larger cast of clashing and complementary personalities, original videogame content that pays homage to popular game trends, and several twists you won’t see coming. Whether you’re a fan of watching twitch streams and playthroughs or a newcomer to the scene, Livescreamers offers a gameplay walkthrough to horror for all of those adventurous enough to attend.

Joseph Perry
Joseph Perry fell in love with horror films as a preschooler when he first saw the Gill-Man swim across the TV screen in "The Creature from The Black Lagoon" and Mothra battle Godzilla in "Godzilla Vs. The Thing.” His education in fright fare continued with TV series such as "The Twilight Zone" and "Outer Limits," along with legendary northern California horror host Bob Wilkins’ "Creature Features." His love for silver age and golden age comic books, including horror titles from Gold Key, Dell, and Marvel started around age 5.

He is a contributing writer for the "Phantom of the Movies VideoScope" and “Drive-In Asylum” print magazines and the websites Horror Fuel, Diabolique Magazine, The Scariest Things, B&S About Movies, and When It Was Cool. He is a co-host of the "Uphill Both Ways" pop culture nostalgia podcast and also writes for its website. Joseph occasionally proudly co-writes articles with his son Cohen Perry, who is a film critic in his own right.

A former northern Californian and Oregonian, Joseph has been teaching, writing, and living in South Korea since 2008.