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News Release

Office of News and Information
Johns Hopkins University
3003 N. Charles Street, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21218-3843
Phone: (410) 516-7160 | Fax (410) 516-5251

November 1, 2002
CONTACT: Amy Cowles
(410) 516-7160

Inaugural Film Festival to Bring Thrills,
Chills to Johns Hopkins

The first ever ThrillerFest at The Johns Hopkins University will bring some classic creepy films to the Homewood campus throughout November and December, with four free screenings in the Donovan Room, Gilman Hall 110, 3400 N. Charles St. in Baltimore.

Organized by Johns Hopkins junior Andrew Moskowitz of Villanova, Pa., the series will treat the Homewood community and the general public to some relatively obscure films that are representative of the thriller genre, Moskowitz says.

"I am showing films that, I suspect, most of the public has not heard of, let alone seen," says Moskowitz, 20. "These movies are dying for some mainstream attention."

Headed for the Donovan Room screen are:

Thursday, Nov. 7
Donovan Room, Gilman Hall 110, 8 p.m.

George Sluizer's 1988 movie Spoorloos (The Vanishing). The plot centers on a man whose girlfriend disappears at a rest stop and his attempts, years later, to discover what happened to her. The film was remade by the director as an American film in 1993, but Moskowitz will present the original French version that he says "is far superior" to its stateside successor. "Whereas the American version had a typical Hollywood ending, Spoorloos takes a turn for the dreadful," Moskowitz says.

Thursday, Nov. 14
Donovan Room, Gilman Hall 110, 8 p.m.

Michael Powell's 1960 film Peeping Tom. Karlheinz Bohm plays a man who murders women only to film their dying faces. Universally reviled upon its initial release, "Peeping Tom" has since become considered one of the greatest films of all time, Moskowitz says. "Forget Scream -- Peeping Tom to be aware of the fact that its only a movie."

Thursday, Nov. 21
Donovan Room, Gilman Hall 110, 8 p.m.

Todd Hayne's 1995 film Safe. Considered by some the best film of the 1990s, Safe tells the story of a young housewife (played by Julianne Moore) who suddenly becomes allergic to everything around her. "Gently shot, Safe sneaks up on you and gets under your skin," Moskowitz says.

Thursday, Dec. 5
Donovan Room, Gilman Hall 110, 8 p.m.

Robin Hardy's 1973 film The Wicker Man. The story of a Christian police officer who travels to a pagan island, the film is likely to offend just as much as it terrifies, Moskowitz says. Following The Wicker Man, Moskowitz will show a 10-minute comedy/thriller he helped to make called Breathing Room, which recently won third place in the local Creative Alliance Movie Makers Slamm (Camm Slamm) contest.

The idea for the film festival was born last summer when Moskowitz, a Writing Seminars major minoring in film studies, had an internship with the University of Maryland Video Press, the Baltimore-based production company behind the Oscar-winning documentary King Gimp. As an aspiring film maker and a longtime film fan, Moskowitz spent his downtime watching movie after movie.

"I began to realize that the thriller has to be the hardest to do," Moskowitz says. "A thriller has to be so tight with no fat in the story. There can't be a plot hole in a good thriller. So they are one of the hardest things to write because the writer has to know how it's going to end before it starts."

Each screening is free and open to the public. Moskowitz will introduce the films, providing background about their creators. He will also be available to facilitate discussions after the shows. For more information, write to Moskowitz at moskow@jhu.edu.

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