Sundance Film Festival 2010 Out-Of-Competition Films Unveiled
by Alex Billington
December 3, 2009
Every new year brings us another Sundance Film Festival and with 49 more days left until Sundance 2010 kicks off, Sundance has officially announced the first half of this year's complete line-up. Yesterday they announced all of the films playing in their four competition categories, today they've announced the remaining 46 films that make up their out-of-competition categories. This is the list we've been waiting to see, as there are some fantastic films that will be premiering at Sundance that I've been waiting to see, like The Killer Inside Me and The Company Men and Buried. So what are you waiting for, read on for the list!
To showcase the diversity to contemporary independent cinema, the Sundance Film Festival Premieres section offers the latest work from American and international directors as well as world premieres of highly anticipated films. Presented by Entertainment Weekly.
Abel / Mexico, USA (Director: Diego Luna; Screenwriters: Diego Luna and Agusto Mendoza) — A peculiar young boy, blurring reality and fantasy, assumes the responsibilities of a family man in his father's absence. Cast: Jose Maria Yazpik, Karina Gidi, Carlos Aragon, Christopher Ruiz-Esparza, Gerardo Ruiz-Esparza.
Cane Toads: The Conquest / USA (Director and Screenwriter: Mark Lewis) — In 3D, Mark Lewis explores one of Australia's greatest environmental catastrophes as he follows the unstoppable march of the cane toad across the Australian continent.
The Company Men / USA (Director and Screenwriter: John Wells) — Three company men attempt to survive a round of corporate downsizing while trying to fend off its effects on their families and their identities. Cast: Ben Affleck, Kevin Costner, Maria Bello, Tommy Lee Jones, Chris Cooper, Rosemarie DeWitt.
The Extra Man / USA (Directors: Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini; Screenwriters: Robert Pulcini, Jonathan Ames and Shari Springer Berman) — A down-and-out playwright who escorts wealthy widows in Manhattan's Upper East Side takes a young aspiring writer under his wing. Cast: Katie Holmes, John C. Reilly, Paul Dano, Kevin Kline, Alicia Goranson.
Get Low / USA (Director: Aaron Schneider; Screenwriters: Chris Provenzano and C. Gaby Mitchell) — A film spun out of equal parts folk tale, fable and real-life legend about a mysterious, 1930s Tennessee hermit who plans his own rollicking funeral party… while still alive. Cast: Robert Duvall, Bill Murray.
Jack Goes Boating / USA (Director: Philip Seymour Hoffman; Screenwriter: Bob Glaudini) — A limo driver's blind date sparks a tale of love, betrayal, friendship, and grace centered around two working-class New York City couples. Cast: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Ryan, John Ortiz, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Tom McCarthy.
The Killer Inside Me / USA (Director: Michael Winterbottom; Screenwriter: John Curran) — Deputy Sheriff Lou Ford is a pillar of the community in his small Texan town; patient, polite and well liked, until he starts killing people. Cast: Casey Affleck, Kate Hudson, Jessica Alba, Simon Baker, Elias Koteas.
Nowhere Boy / United Kingdom (Director: Sam Taylor Wood; Screenwriters: Julia Baird and Matt Greenhalgh) — A teenage John Lennon confronts wrenching family secrets and finds his musical voice in late 1950s Liverpool. Cast: Aaron Johnson, Kristin Scott Thomas, Thomas Sangster, Anne-Marie Duff, David Morrissey.
Please Give / USA (Director and Screenwriter: Nicole Holofcener) — In New York City, a husband and wife butt heads with the granddaughters of the elderly woman who lives next door. Cast: Amanda Peet, Oliver Platt, Rebecca Hall, Catherine Keener, Sarah Steele.
The Runaways / USA (Director and Screenwriter: Floria Sigismondi) — In 1970s LA, a tough teenager named Joan Jett connects with an eccentric producer to form an all-girl band that would launch her career and make rock history. Cast: Kristen Stewart, Dakota Fanning, Scout Taylor-Compton, Michael Shannon, Alia Shawkat, Tatum O'Neal.
Shock Doctrine / USA (Directors: Michael Winterbottom and Mat Whitecross) — Closely based on the book by award-winning journalist Naomi Klein, Shock Doctrine exposes how shock is used to implement economic policy in vulnerable environments.
Twelve / USA (Director: Joel Schumacher; Screenwriter: Jordan Melamed) — A chronicle of the highs and lows of privileged kids on Manhattan's Upper East Side involving sex, drugs and murder. Cast: Chace Crawford, Emma Roberts, Kiefer Sutherland, 50 Cent, Zoë Kravitz.
Untitled Duplass Brothers Project / USA (Directors and Screenwriters: Jay Duplass and Mark Duplass) — A recently divorced guy meets a new lady. Then he meets her son who is, well… interesting. Cast: John C. Reilly, Marisa Tomei, Jonah Hill, Catherine Keener.
A new section composed of eight American films selected for their innovative and original work in low- and no-budget filmmaking.
Armless (Director: Habib Azar; Screenwriter: Kyle Jarrow) — In this off-kilter comedy, a woman comes to terms with her husband's strange secret. Cast: Daniel London, Janel Moloney, Keith Powell, Laurie Kennedy, Matt Walton.
Bass Ackwards (Director and Screenwriter: Linas Phillips) — After ending a disastrous affair with a married woman, a man embarks on a lyrical, strange and comedic cross-country journey in a modified VW bus. Cast: Linas Philips, Davie-Blue, Jim Fletcher, Paul Lazar.
Bilal's Stand (Director and Screenwriter: Sultan Sharrief) — Bilal, a Muslim high school senior in Detroit juggles his dysfunctional family, their taxi stand, and an ice carving contest in his secret attempt to land a college scholarship. Cast: Julian Gant.
The Freebie (Director and Screenwriter: Katie Aselton) — A young married couple decides to give each other one night with someone else. Cast: Dax Shepard, Katie Aselton.
Homewrecker (Director: Todd Barnes and Brad Barnes; Screenwriters: Todd Barnes, Brad Barnes, Sophie Goodhart) — The last romantic in New York City is an ex-con locksmith on work release. Cast: Ana Reeder, Anslem Richardson, Stephen Rannazzisi.
New Low (Director: Adam Bowers) — A neurotic twentysomething struggles to figure out which girl he really belongs with: the best one he's ever known, or the worst. Cast: Adam Bowers, Jayme Ratzer, Toby Turner, Valerie Jones.
One Too Many Mornings (Director: Michael Mohan; Screenwriters: Anthony Deptula, Michael Mohan, Stephen Hale) — Two damaged young men recover their high school friendship by awkwardly revealing to each other just how messed up they've become. Cast: Anthony Deptula, Stephen Hale, Tina Kapousis.
The Taqwacores (Director: Eyad Zahra; Screenwriter: Michael Muhammad Knight) — When a Pakistani-Muslim engineering student moves into a house with punk Muslims of all stripes in Buffalo, New York, his ideologies are challenged to the core. Cast: Noureen DeWulf, Dominic Rains, Rasika Mathur, Tony Yalda, Anne Marie Leighton.
New for 2010, the Spotlight section is a tribute to the cinema we love. Regardless of where these impressive films have played throughout the world, the Sundance Film Festival is thrilled to light a marquee for them.
Narrative films screening in the Festival's Spotlight are:
Bran Nue Dae/ Australia (Director: Rachel Perkins; Screenwriters: Reg Cribb, Rachel Perkins, and Jimmy Chi) — In the summer of 1965, a young man is filled with the life of the idyllic old pearling port Broome – fishing, hanging out with his mates and his girl. Cast: Rocky McKenzie, Jessica Mauboy, Geoffrey Rush, Ernie Dingo.
Daddy Longlegs / USA (Directors and Screenwriters: Benny Safdie and Josh Safdie) — A swan song to excuses and responsibilities, to fatherhood and self-created experiences, and to what it's like to be truly torn between being a child and being an adult. Cast: Ronald Bronstein, Sage Ranaldo, Frey Ranaldo.
Enter the Void / France (Director and Screenwriter: Gaspar Noé) — A drug-dealing teen is killed in Japan, after which he reappears as a ghost to watch over his sister. Cast: Nathaniel Brown, Paz de la Huerta, Cyril Roy, Emily Alyn Lind, Jesse Kuhn.
I Am Love (Io Sono L'amore) / Italy (Director and Screenwriter: Luca Guadagnino) — A tragic love story set at the turn of the millennium in Milan. Cast: Tilda Swinton, Edoardo Gabbriellini, Pippo Delbono, Alba Rohrwacher, Marisa Berenson.
Louis C.K.: Hilarious / USA (Director: Louis C.K.) — Sharp-tongued comedian Louis C.K. pulls no punches in this visceral concert experience.
Lourdes / Austria, France, Germany (Director and Screenwriter: Jessica Hausner) — A woman in a wheelchair travels to Lourdes in an attempt to escape her isolation. Cast: Sylvie Testud, Léa Seydoux, Bruno Todeschini, Gilette Barbier, Gerhard Liebmann, Irma Wagner.
Mother & Child / USA (Director and Screenwriter: Rodrigo García) — The lives of three women – a physical therapist, the daughter she gave up at birth three decades ago, and an African American woman seeking to adopt a child of her own – intersect in surprising ways. Cast: Naomi Watts, Annette Bening, Kerry Washington, Jimmy Smits, Samuel L. Jackson.
New African Cinema — A collection of short films from multiple countries.
A Prophet (Un Prophète) / France (Director: Jacques Audiard; Screenwriters: Thomas Bidegain and Jacques Audiard) — An engaging examination of a seedy, gangster-driven underworld set in a French prison. Cast: Tahar Rahim, Niels Arestrup, Adel Bencherif, Hichem Yacoubi, Reda Kateb.
Women Without Men (Zanan-e bedun-e mardan)/ Germany, Austria, France (Directors and Screenwriters: Shirin Neshat and Shoja Azari) — A dissection of Iranian society at the time of the 1953 CIA-backed coup that overturned the nationalist government of Mohammed Mossadegh and installed the shah in power. Cast: Pegah Ferydoni, Arita Shahrzad, Shabnam Tolouei, Orsi Tóth.
Documentary films screening in the Festival's Spotlight are:
8: The Mormon Proposition / USA (Director: Reed Cowan) — An examination of the relationship between the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the promotion and passage of California's Proposition 8 denying marriage rights for Gay and Lesbian couples.
Catfish / USA (Directors: Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman) — When a young New York City photographer is contacted on Facebook by an 8-year-old painting prodigy from rural Michigan, he becomes deeply enmeshed in her life, even falling in love with her older sister--that is, until a crack appears in her story.
Climate Refugees / USA (Director: Michael Nash) — An over-consuming, crowded world, with depleting resources and a changing climate is giving birth to 25 million climate refugees resulting in a mass global migration and border conflicts.
Countdown to Zero / USA (Director: Lucy Walker) — A fascinating and frightening exploration of the dangers of nuclear weapons, exposing a variety of present day threats and featuring insights from a host of international experts and world leaders who advocate total global disarmament.
Life 2.0 / USA (Director: Jason Spingarn-Koff) — More than an examination of new technology, the film is foremost an intimate, character-based drama about people whose lives are dramatically transformed by the virtual world called Second Life.
Teenage Paparazzo / USA (Director: Adrian Grenier) — A 13-year-old paparazzi boy snaps a photo of actor Adrian Grenier, leading Grenier to explore the effects of celebrity on culture.
To Catch a Dollar: Muhammad Yunus Banks on America / Bangladesh, USA (Director: Gayle Ferraro) — Tapping into the success of Muhammad Yunus after winning the Nobel Peace Prize (2006), Grameen America has opened in Queens, NY replicating the banking model program Yunus first started in Bangladesh.
Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks / USA (Director: Dan Klores) — Reggie Miller single-handedly crushed the hearts of Knick fans multiple times. But it was the 1995 Eastern Conference Semifinals that solidified Miller as Public Enemy #1 in New York City.
Park City at Midnight:
Home to horror films and crazy comedies, Black Dynamite, The Blair Witch Project and Saw are among the films that have screened here.
7 Days / Canada (Director: Daniel Grou; Screenwriter: Patrick Senecal) — A doctor seeks revenge by kidnapping, torturing and killing the man who murdered his young daughter. Cast: Rémy Girard, Claude Legault, Fanny Mallette, Martin Dubreuil, Rose-Marie Coallier.
Buried / Spain, USA (Director: Rodrigo Cortes; Screenwriter: Chris Sparling) — A U.S. contractor working in Iraq awakes to find he is buried alive inside a coffin. With only a lighter and a cell phone it's a race against time to escape this claustrophobic death trap. Cast: Ryan Reynolds.
Frozen / USA (Director and Screenwriter: Adam Green) — Three skiers are mistakenly stranded on a chairlift, forced to make life-or-death choices that prove more perilous than staying put and freezing to death. Cast: Emma Bell, Shawn Ashmore, Kevin Zegers.
HIGH School / USA (Director: John Stalberg, Jr.; Screenwriters: Erik Linthorst, John Stalberg, Jr., and Stephen Susco) — A random drug test coincides with a high school valedictorian's first hit of pot. Cast: Sean Marquette, Matt Bush, Adrien Brody, Michael Chiklis, Colin Hanks, Mykelti Williamson, Andrew Wilson, Yeardley Smith, Michael Vartan, Curtis Armstrong, Erica Phillips, Adhir Kaylan.
The Perfect Host / USA (Director: Nick Tomnay; Screenwriters: Nick Tomnay and Krishna Jones) — A criminal on the run cons his way into the wrong dinner party where the host is anything but ordinary. Cast: David Hyde Pierce, Clayne Crawford, Helen Reddy, Nathaniel Parker.
Splice / France, Canada (Director: Vincenzo Natali; Screenwriters: Vincenzo Natali, Antoinette Terry Bryant, and Doug Taylor) — Clive and Elsa are young, brilliant, and ambitious. The new animal species they engineered has made them rebel superstars of the scientific world. In secret, they introduce human DNA into the experiment. Cast: Adrien Brody, Sarah Polley, Delphine Chaneac, David Hewlett.
Tucker & Dale vs. Evil / Canada (Director: Eli Craig; Screenwriters: Eli Craig and Morgan Jurgenson) — Two West Virginian hillbillies go on vacation at their dilapidated mountain cabin, but their peaceful trip goes horribly awry. Cast: Tyler Labine, Alan Tudyk, Katrina Bowden, Jesse Moss.
The Violent Kind / USA (Directors and Screenwriters: The Butcher Brothers) — A group of rowdy young bikers party it up at a secluded farmhouse when, tormented by a mysterious force, things take a turn for the worst. Cast: Taylor Cole, Christina Prousalis, Tiffany Shepis, David Fine, Joseph McKelheer.