Whether scaly, one-eyed, furry, slimy, winged, shambling or even undead, monsters are a near-universal fascination. Yet lurking among us are a cult of zealots for whom they have almost religious significance. For that sickly sect, Monsterpalooza is like a three-day Christmas in Hades. (That’s a good thing.) A mind-rending compendium of makeup and effects artists, filmmakers, actors, vendors, panels, screenings and general hoopla, this is the most horrific gathering anywhere. (Again, trust us: That’s good.) Friday’s highlights includes the premiere of a new documentary on stop-motion genius Ray Harryhausen and a special 80th-anniversary celebration of King Kong. Saturday has a Q&A with makeup maven Tom Savini, as well as a reunion of the original cast of Japanese small-screen sci-fi fave Ultraman. And Sunday features 2001: A Space Odyssey’s Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood discussing Kubrick and, yes, HAL, along with nonstop screenings and appearances by the legendary horror empress Barbara Steele, the one and only Linda Blair, the one-man horror encyclopedia Johnny Legend, a gaggle of Karloff, Chaney and Lugosi family members and monstrously more. Expect cultural fetishism at its lowest — and most rewarding.

Fri., April 12, 6-11 p.m.; Sat., April 13, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun., April 14, 11 a.m.-6 p.m., 2013

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