The 2017 Sundance Film Festival took place from January 21 to January 31. The festival is a premiere showcase for independent film held each January in Park City, Utah. Sundance is also an early predictor of the year’s movie trends; paying attention to the festival is a good way to catch the first talking of Oscar buzz (for instance, La La Land and Manchester by the Sea were both showed in at Sundance last year and both movies are frontrunners for the Oscars this year). In 2017 Sundance proved once again, that there are plenty of movies to get excited about this year. With that in mind I decided to do a list of the Indie movies that premiered in the festival that I am most excited to watch. Full disclosure, I did not watch any of these movies yet, my selection was simply based on the trailers, interviews and reviews that I watched and read during the festival. So here we go!
The Big Sick
This is a comedy brought by the producer Judd Apatow with Silicon Valley’s Kumail Nanjiani as the leading man. Nanjiani wrote the script with his wife Emily V. Gordon and the movie was directed by Michael Showalter. This is autobiographical movie, Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon tell the story of their relationship, which involved Nanjiani trying to appease his Pakistani parents by dating lots of potential brides for an arranged marriage. People that watched it commented that they never laughed so hard in a movie and Amazon paid $12 Million for the rights of the movie.
This movie is based on a Pulitzer-finalist play, Jon Hamm from Mad Men plays a holographic “younger version” of an old woman’s deceased husband. The purpose of the hologram is to help the 86-year-old Marjorie reconstruct a past she can barely remember. Lois Smith reprises her role as Marjorie, after playing her onstage in New York, and Michael Almereyda directed the film.
An Inconvenient Sequel
This is the follow-up of the Oscar-winning documentary An Inconvenient Truth. The sequel was directed by Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk, and follows vice president Al Gore around the world as he continues his fight for international climate policy change. As crazy as it sound these days (you know, because of Trump) I believe in global climate change and I am very curious to watch the film and I hope it brings some hope.
I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore
This movie has an interesting premise: a depressed nursing assistant purpose is restored by her pursuit of the criminals who broke into her home. Elijah Wood plays her erratic Metalhead neighbor and Macon Blair best known as the vengeful protagonist in Blue Ruin directs the flick. If they can find the right mix of darkness and humor this might just be a very fun movie to watch.
Based on the graphic novel by Daniel Clowes (who also wrote the script) and directed by Craig Johnson (The Skeleton Twins) Wilson stars Woody Harrelson as the title character, he plays a hilariously awkward middle-aged man who finds a purpose in life when he discovers about a daughter he never knew he had. The trailer is really funny and I am looking forward to check this out when released.
Manifesto was written and directed by Julian Rosefeldt, the film began as a multi-screen film installation in 2015. The 130-minute exhibition was shot over 12 days in Berlin but the cut showed in Sundance is only 90 minutes long. Cate Blanchett plays 13 different roles performing various artistic manifestos such as a punk, a housewife and a TV anchor. It looks very interesting and I am very curious about it.
This sci-fi romance directed by Charlie McDowell set in a world where the existence of the afterlife is scientifically proven and this revelation has prompted a huge increase in suicide. Robert Redford stars as Dr. Thomas Harbor, who’s made a scientific breakthrough, Jason Segel, Rooney Mara, Jesse Plemons, Riley Keough, and Ron Canada also star. The Discovery launches globally March 31 on Netflix.
The Little Hours
Another comedy that got my attention. The year is 1347 and a young servant named Massetto, played by Dave Franco, fleeing from his master takes refuge at a convent full of emotionally unstable nuns played by Alison Brie, Kate Micucci and Aubrey Plaza the nuns got all hot for Massetto, he pretends to be deaf mute so that they will leave him alone but his plan does not work leading to a sort of medieval comedy of errors.
That is probably the most bizarre (in a good way) movie of this lot, maybe even of the year, Gloria (Anne Hathaway) is a party girl who, after losing her job and her boyfriend, is forced to leave her life in New York and move back to her hometown only to discover an unbelievable connection between herself and a Kaiju monster attacking Seoul. The movie is directed and written by Nacho Vigalondo and will hit theaters April 7, 2017.
A young vegetarian and brilliant student starting out at veterinary school, undergoes a carnivorous ritual and develops an unbidden taste for raw meat, with unexpected consequences. According to the movie info it was rated R for aberrant behavior, bloody and grisly images, strong sexuality, nudity, language and drug use/partying. Sounds like a must watch film for me!
Well that was what I found most interesting among the 2017 Sundance Festival movies selected, I hope you liked it. Next month I will make another preview but this with all the Hollywood blockbusters set to be released this year, until next time!