Blackhouse, AAFCA, VR, Panels, Interviews and Screenings always make my Sundance Film Festival experience fulfilling, exciting and the official kick-off for the next awards season. As one knows, there are several things needed to prepare to festival in Utah…
- Download the Sundance and Blackhouse Apps – Available at the App Store, these apps provide as a useful tool to get that schedule under control and know what films and activities you can hit without being broke down.
- Check the Box Office – A handful of tickets are available at the butt crack as soon as the box office opens the day of the film screening. The box office is located at 136 Heber Avenue in Park City and Trolley Square in Salt Lake City – after all what do you have to lose.
- If it’s FREE – It’s ME! During the festival FREE tix will be available Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 20 and 21, Friday and Saturday, Jan. 26 and 27 at the Park Avenue Theatre in Park City, and Sunday, Jan. 21, and Thursday, Jan. 25 at midnight at the Tower Theatre in Salt Lake City. The films playing will be announced shortly before the screenings, based on what’s hot as the festival goes on. Tickets will be distributed via the e-waitlist system available on the Sundance App.
- Hydration and Hand Sanitizer – With this year boasting one of this worse flu seasons in quite some time, drinking water to stay hydrated and keeping hand sanitizer on hand is an absolute necessity. Free souvenir water bottles are available and stations to refill are available at every screening venue.
- Free Transportation – Shuttle buses are available all over Park City and driving there is really not an option since there is literally NO place to park.
Here’s a sneak peek of some of the films I’m looking forward to checking out and you should too if headed to Park City..
Zoe Kazan took a note from her The Big Sick co-star Kumail Nanjiani, because the talented multihyphenate co-wrote Wildlife with her partner Paul Dano (for whom the film marks a directorial debut). Set in small-town Montana in the 1960s, Wildlife tells the story of an only child who witnesses his family life dissolve before his very eyes when his father (Jake Gyllenhaal) loses his job and leaves to fight wildfires along the Canadian border, while his mother (Carey Mulligan) begins an affair with an older man. Forced into sudden and unexpected adulthood, Joe, a sensitive 14-year-old, must come to grips with the fact that the nuclear family you see on TV isn’t always the one you’re born into.
Sorry to Bother You
If you went to go see any movie last year—including the phenomenal Get Out—there’s a 90 percent chance it starred Lakeith Stanfield. Stanfield is one of the most dynamic and talented young actors working today and his excellence continues with Sorry to Bother You . 30-something telemarketer Cassius Green suffering from self-esteem issues, manages to ascend the corporate ladder while selling truly vile products to unwitting customers. Featuring an all-star cast including Tessa Thompson and Armie Hammer – this is absolutely going to be one to watch.
Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind
When Robin Williams passed away in 2014, it felt as though the laughter had died. However, the comedian’s legacy lives on, inspiring generations of children, performers, and artists to create works of their own. In this new documentary, filmmaker Marina Zenovich unearths a treasure trove of rare footage, archival material, and never-before-seen interviews with the people who knew Williams best. The result is a portrait of a man who effortlessly touched the world while battling inner demons of his own, and a celebration of a life that always deserves to be celebrated.
Idris Elba isn’t just an in-demand DJ, engrossing actor, and smolderingly handsome haunter of your dreams; he’s now also a director. The mulitalented Elba makes his directorial debut with Yardie, a coming-of-age crime drama based on Victor Headley’s cult novel about Denis Dread, a young Jamaican man who gets caught up in a life of gang violence and winds up hunting down his brother’s assassin in the streets of London.
Following the true story of a woman who committed ax-wielding murders in Massachusetts in the late 1800s, Lizzie has got quite the hook. With Chloë Sevigny taking the lead role and Kristen Stewart playing her live-in maid, this has the makings of a daring look an little-known black mark in history. After a career-best performance in Personal Shopper, one hopes that Stewart continues her streak in this dark drama.
NANCY (Christina Choe)
One of the most intriguing films in the Sundance line-up is NANCY, which marks the directorial debut of Christina Choe, who has earned acclaim with a number of short films. For her first feature, she’s recruited the talents of James Bond producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson in the story of a mid-30s woman who spins a web of falsehoods under an Internet persona and things spiral out of control when fact and fiction blur. Led by Andrea Riseborough, it promises to be a role of demanding complexity for the talented actress.
The Miseducation of Cameron Post (Desiree Akhavan)
Based on the YA novel by Emily Danforth, The Miseducation of Cameron Post follows a high school student played by Chloë Grace Moretz who is forced into gay-conversion therapy when she is caught having sex with her best friend. It’s the second film by director Desiree Akhavan who took her time following-up her 2014 Sundance hit Appropriate Behavior.
The Sundance Film Festival runs from January 18 – January 28 in Park City, Utah. For more info and scheduling you can download the Sundance app or log onto www.sundance.org.