Can't Tell the Flix Without the Pics

Fantastic Fest's pictograph reference guide to the films is an endlessly fun diversion

Icon Key
Icon Key

All week long, I've been digging this fun pictograph reference guide to Fantastic Fest's movies. The chart takes up a full page in the program book, and T-shirts have also been emblazoned with the hand-drawn symbols. 130 little squares depict handy tips to the movies' contents – everything you might imagine and more that you hope you can't.

Some of the pictures are straightforward: a doll with pins in it signifies "voodoo," a drawing of a 1¢ coin indicates "no budget" while a 2¢ coin ups the stakes to "low budget," a skull sucking on a ciggie means you should be ready for some necrophilia. Other pictures are more hilariously conceptual. Say you're looking for a movie with animal attacks, puppet sex, castration, and scenery chewing, Fantastic Fest has the pictograph to demonstrate the concept and also the movies to fit the tastes. The idea was borrowed from Fantastic Fest's pals at New Zealand's Incredibly Strange Film Festival, where the reference guide has been a longtime staple.

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