14 items from 2015
The 2015 Sundance Film Festival kicks off Thursday and with it come some of the most groundbreaking, experimental, and challenging independent films from Hollywood and around the world.
From films about infamous psychological experiments to degenerate gamblers, and the post-apocalyptic worlds to ill-fated emotional journeys, these are the nine films from this year's Sundance Film Fest that we can't wait to watch.
Sundance Film Festival
What It's About: The Stanford Prison Experiment tells the real life story of an infamous psychological study examining the effects of imprisonment. Two dozen student volunteers are randomly assigned to be guards or prisoners in this mock jail and, as the experiment unfolds, the students begin to disturbingly fall into their roles.
Why We Want To See It: The real experiment was a frightening yet fascinating examination of psychological conditioning and the man who ran the »
Fitness model Greg Plitt killed in train accident: Plitt was the 'body' of Dr. Manhattan in 'Watchmen' movie Fitness model Greg Plitt, best known for adorning countless fitness magazine covers and for his participation on the reality TV show Work Out, was killed by a passenger train while being videotaped last Saturday afternoon, January 17, 2015, in Burbank, about 20 kilometers northwest of downtown Los Angeles. Authorities are now trying to figure out how Plitt and his two-person crew were able to access a restricted area -- without a filming permit -- and what exactly they were doing there. Online tabloids claim to have the answer, asserting that Greg Plitt's death was the result of a failed thrill-seeking stunt. The athletic Plitt, who had previously shot at least one workout video on a train track, was purportedly trying to outrun the passenger train, but tripped and fell on the tracks. »
- Zac Gille
On the heels of her second Golden Globe win and fifth Academy Award nomination, Julianne Moore, flanked by her husband and two children, sat back and soaked up the Museum of the Moving Image’s salute in her honor.
“You know when you’re young, you’ll pursue things without any knowledge of where they’ll lead, and not knowing how they’ll shape your life,” Moore professed to the crowd. “But because this is a retrospective, it’s forcing me to look back and consider what it was that led me here. A lot of it was luck, (and) it was almost certainly my interest in story.”
The 29th annual Mmi Salute served as a monument to her own story.
The event came at a time of change for the museum, which in 10 days will welcome Sony Pictures Classics founder and co-president Michael Barker into the co-chairman role previously assumed by Herbert S. »
- Alexa Harrison
There’s a reason Lars Von Trier decided to premiere his sexually explicit “Nymphomaniac” at the Sundance Film Festival last year. The mountainside gathering has a history of attracting edgy and boundary-pushing fare.
The Danish auteur won’t be showing anything explosive in Park City this time, but the 2015 edition of Sundance promises to have plenty of controversial documentaries and feature films about everything from sexual abuse to Scientology that are certain to spark debate.
Here’s a look at some of the most controversial projects looking to heat up the snowbound festival.
Director: Kyle Patrick Alvarez
Why It Pushes Buttons: Based on the true story about a Stanford University psychological survey that had students create a mock prison setting to look at the root causes of abuse, the film will bring to mind recent clashes with authority ranging from »
- Brent Lang
Filmmaking careers are born at Sundance, as evidenced by directors Kevin Smith (“Clerks”), J.C. Chandor (“Margin Call”) and Damien Chazelle (“Whiplash”). This year’s festival features plenty of returning artists as well as new voices with something fresh to say. TheWrap talked to buyers and sellers before whittling down this list of 10 buzzworthy filmmakers on the eve of Sundance. Something tells us we’ll be hearing about them for years to come.
Nikole Beckwith, »
- Jeff Sneider
The Sundance Film Festival 2014 selection Rudderless has just made its home video debut on DVD and Digital HD. The film marks the directorial debut of William H. Macy and features an all-star cast including Anton Yelchin, Billy Crudup, Selena Gomez, Felicity Huffman and Lawrence Fishburne.
Thanks to Paramount Home Entertainment we have three copies of Rudderless on DVD that are up for grabs in this contest. For a chance to win one, please fill out and submit the short entry form below. The odds of winning can be increased each and every day you stop back to enter for as many days as the contest is open.
You must be a resident of the U.S. or Canada to enter.
Award-winning actor William H. Macy makes his directorial debut in this heartfelt and inspirational drama lead by an exemplary cast. Sam (Billy Crudup), a former high-profile ad executive, is devastated »
Exclusive: The Kings Of Summer actor Moises Arias has joined the cast of Ben-Hur, the historical epic Timur Bekmambetov is directing for MGM and Paramount Pictures. Arias will play Gestas, a teenage Jewish zealot whose family has been murdered by the Romans, who is desperate to fight for his people’s freedom. Jack Huston, Morgan Freeman, and Toby Kebbell star in the production which will lens in Europe ahead of a February 26, 2016 release. Arias is an alumnus of Hannah Montana and The Wizards of Waverly Place who starred in Jordan Vogt-Roberts’ 2013 Sundance Grand Jury Prize-nominated The Kings Of Summer. He also lent his voice recently to Despicable Me 2 and appeared in Summit’s sci-fier Ender’s Game. Next up is a role in the Sundance 2015 drama Stanford Prison Experiment opposite Ezra Miller, Michael Angarano, and Billy Crudup, in which Arias plays one of several university students tapped for the »
- Jen Yamato
Buyers will be out in full force this week in Park City but with so many options to choose from, it helps to have a cheat sheet to prioritize the must-see acquisition titles at Sundance. After talking to buyers and sellers alike, here are the 10 most promising titles with the loudest buzz heading into this year’s festival.
The Bronze (WME)
What’s the Deal?: The highlight of Sundance’s opening night lineup is this raunchy comedy from director Bryan Buckley featuring co-writer Melissa Rauch in what could prove to be a star-making performance. The “Big Bang Theory” actress plays a washed-up Olympic gymnast whose local celebrity is threatened by the arrival of a promising young gymnast seeking a mentor. Sundance describes the foul-mouthed protagonist as “a lovably loathsome character who makes Tonya Harding look like Grace Kelly,” so perhaps this will be the next “Bad Words?”
First Screening: Thursday, Jan. 22, 9:30 p.m. – Eccles
What’s the Deal?: Jake Johnson and Rosemarie DeWitt play East L.A. parents on the verge of a nervous breakdown as they juggle marital and parenting duties. Things get weird when she enjoys a night on the town with her girls and he takes the opportunity to invite his buddies over for smoking, drinking and carousing. Joe Swanberg’s latest may be his most commercial film yet, and it certainly features his most high-profile cast. Between Anna Kendrick, Orlando Bloom, Brie Larson, Sam Rockwell, Chris Messina, Jenny Slate, Melanie Lynskey, Timothy Simons, Ron Livington, comedian Mike Birbiglia and veterans Sam Elliott and Judith Light, there’s someone for everyone.
First Screening: Monday, Jan. 26, 9:45 p.m. – Eccles »
- Jeff Sneider
Paramount Home Entertainment has released the hit drama Rudderless on DVD, which marks the directorial debut of actor William H. Macy, who also co-stars in the drama. Following its debut at the Sundance Film Festival last year, Rudderless was acquired in a joint venture between Paramount Home Media Distribution and Samuel Goldwyn Films back in April. The film debuted in theaters this past October in limited release, and to celebrate the DVD release, we have a new contest lined up.
Rudderless tells the story of Sam, a father (Billy Crudup) whose life is torn apart by the sudden death of his son. When Sam discovers a box filled with his son's demo tapes and lyrics, his own child's musical talent is a revelation for him. Sam learns each song and eventually musters the will to perform one at a local bar. When Quentin (Anton Yelchin), a young musician in the audience, »
Chicago – Actor William H. Macy’s directorial debut “Rudderless” is a film of open mic songwriting that tackles a recovery from grief with neat lyrics and easy metaphors. Instead of standing out, Macy has provided another sap’s ballad that has the cuteness of “Kumbaya”, one that aims to please the crowd without challenging emotions, only showing them.
The film drifts on a performance from Crudup that isn’t so spectacular so much as the loudest instrument in the movie’s atmosphere. Crudup certainly acts as to how Macy directs, in an obvious way on a simple background. Fittingly, Crudup’s best moment is not anything during the movie when he is coming out of his shell, but his final performance towards the end of the film - a restrained moment that provides smoother catharsis and emotional recognition, without the obviousness.
Macy’s first endeavor behind the camera is memorable in the wrong ways. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Rudderless Sam (Billy Crudup) is an advertising executive whose life comes to a halt when his son dies unexpectedly. Unable to face what happened he leaves his world behind and retreats to a blue collar job on a tranquil lake, but when his son’s belongings make their way to him he discovers several recordings of the teen’s own music. Slowly, Sam begins to find a connection with his dead son by playing the music at a local bar, but the lyrics attract the attention of another lost young man (Anton Yelchin) and soon Sam finds himself a popular part of the local music scene. William H. Macy’s feature directorial debut is a fantastically affecting look at grief, redemption and the willingness to admit when you don’t have all the answers. Crudup »
- Rob Hunter
The directorial debut of the great actor William H. Macy, Rudderless, is available today on DVD, and we have three copies to give away. Read on to learn how. (Spoiler: it's easy!) The film debuted at the Sundance Film Festival last year. Here is the official synopsis: Rudderless tells the story of Sam, a father (Billy Crudup) whose life is torn apart by the sudden death of his son. When Sam discovers a box filled with his son's demo tapes and lyrics, his own child's musical talent is a revelation for him. Sam learns each song and eventually musters the will to perform one at a local bar. When Quentin (Anton Yelchin), a young musician in the audience, is captivated by the song, the unlikely...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
Tim Burton is perhaps one of the most unique and exciting filmmakers working today. With a vision inspired by classic horror and a dry wit, his films are often fiercely entertaining and endlessly clever. Of course, that’s not to say that there aren’t dark spots on his filmography. Like every filmmaker he’s had his missteps but even when the movies don’t quite work Burton manages to create films that are visually stunning and artistic. With the recent release of Big Eyes and a possible sequel to Beetlejuice in the works, examining Burton’s work and influence is more important than ever.
17. Planet of the Apes (2001): Even when a Burton film has issues there are usually some redeeming factors (see Darks Shadows’ amazing style) but, oh man, one really has to look hard to find something good in this disaster of a movie. Sure, the makeup »
With January being the traditional low point of the movie season, cinephiles from around the world look to the Sundance Film Festival for some glimmer of hope. America’s preeminent independent film festival has graduated some heavy-hitters over the years, including Whiplash, Ida, and Boyhood from last year’s class. 2015’s program boasts an unprecedented balance between drama and comedy premieres, ensuring that everyone from general audiences to discerning film students will leave happy. Like any good buffet table, however, Sundance simply has too much good stuff to consume, unless you don’t mind unbuckling your belt in a crowded movie theater. With that in mind, here are a few of the more hotly-anticipated titles from this year’s festival.
The Psychology Triumvirate
Psychology buffs rejoice! This year’s Sundance is presenting three movies that might someday be found in a Psych 101 course syllabus. From the U.S. Dramatic Competition, »
- J.R. Kinnard
14 items from 2015
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