The funkiest town on the Jersey Shore now has an offbeat film festival. Highlands is the home town of Kevin Smith, the creator of "Clerks," and we want to capture that spirit with our Highlands Film Fest. Our 2021 theme is "Horror and Suspense." We are interested in seeing anxiety-inducing psychological terror as well as blood and guts--everything from A (for Alfred Hitchcock) to Z (Rob Zombie, of course)

2020 meant some adjustments to cope with the pandemic. We were able to screen a dozen of our official entries at our two night DRIVE-IN MOVIES, It was so popular that we are considering making it a permanent part of the Film Fest weekend! All of the official entries received play at our online Digital Theater hosted by Festivee.

2021 winners will receive a Yorick Award. Named after the bone-headed character in the famous graveyard scene in Shakespeare's Hamlet, the Yorick is a skull mounted on a beautiful wooden base that will instantly make you the envy of all your film making friends and impress all others around you! You must attend to receive the award.

The individual or corporation submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to commit the film for screening, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations. The undersigned shall indemnify and hold harmless Highlands Film Fest from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.

Overall Rating
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Value
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Hospitality
Networking
  • Manny Serrano

    Rob Kneller and his team did a great job with this fest. They had a great lineup and some of the coolest awards! They really do what they can to make everyone feel like a part of the festival, whether you're a filmmaker or just a fan. I hope they stick around because I'm excited to return!

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    We were very honored to have you and Lindsay at the Film Fest. Your film DARK TALES FROM CHANNEL X was a great addition to the lineup!

  • Rafael De Leon Jr.

    I had a great time at the Highlands Horror Film Fest! It had a perfect atmosphere and setting with awesome Halloween decorations. A huge thank you to festival director Rob Kneller and the festival team for being kind, welcoming and for awarding my short film "Momma, Don't Go" the Best Short Film award! I highly recommend submitting to this festival and I hope to be back in the future.

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you for the kind words! Please do keep us in mind when you complete your next film!

  • Highlands Horror Film Festival was a blast! From the welcoming staff to the awesome horror decor, you could really tell this festival cares immensely about independent horror filmmakers. Thank you so much to the entire team for screening our film 'For Roger' and for awarding it 'Best Debut Feature Film'!

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thank you for joining us for the Film Fest. It was a tremendous honor to screen your film and have the attendees get to speak with you in person. Very much appreciated!

  • Jay Kay

    What a blast to be part of this festival! Not only does Rob and the HHFF team care but they make the experience more than cinema but a community experience at a beautiful backdrop. Well worth for filmmakers to submit in now and be a part of this rising film fest. Ty so much for screening [Within the Frame] and awarding it Best College short!

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Your presence definitely enhanced the entire Film Fest! Not only did you submit a great short film, your contributions to the discussions were informative and interesting!

  • The Highlands Horror Film Festival was a kick-a** experience. It’s clear the entire team are super passionate about independent film and giving filmmakers a great platform. Rob, Jay, and everyone involved hosted a great event…with great films…and an all around great vibe. Do yourself a favor and submit here….we had an enthusiastic crowd turn up for a packed screening of The Andy Baker Tape and we were lucky enough to walk away with the COOLEST film festival trophy ever conceived.

    Thank you Highlands. This was a great weekend.

    October 2021
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    Response from festival:

    Thanks Bret! Having you and producer Caitlin Borek attend was a highlight of the weekend!