I love October. It's my favorite time of year—and this weekend is no exception, since all the goths and nerds will cram into the Hollywood Theatre to check out the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival. This year's fest feels like it's going to be an extra-special treat, as almost everything in this year's film lineup is brand new. Whether you want to check out the full-length features, the shorts, or a mix of both, there should be something for everyone. (And this year, each block of shorts is only being screened once—so check out the schedule, and plan accordingly.)

I'm most excited by Dead Birds, which follows a group of Confederate soldiers in the Civil War who take refuge in an abandoned house—and commence to go batshit crazy on each other. Dark Waters looks promising too—I mean, how can you go wrong with a bunch of evil nuns on an island? Other interesting bits to check out include a sneak peek at the new Hellboy animated series and a "Writers vs. Filmmakers" panel, in which you'll learn about what it takes to adapt horror stories to film. And, if you can't walk away without a T-shirt, video, or other kind of wares, there'll be plenty of vendors—everyone from Lurker Films and Dark Horse Comics to the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society and Kthulhu Kitsch will be selling stuff.

One more thing to keep in mind: As with anything, some people take this sort of thing far too seriously and become idiots. As much as you want to punch that annoying douchebag wearing a Cthulhu mask in the front row, remember that if you get kicked out, you'll miss all the films. So have fun, and save the douchebag mockery for afterwards at the pub.

See Film Shorts on pg. 53 and Movie Times on pg. 55 for more info.