Sundance 2014 Review: FRANK, A Fun Musical Mashup That Doesn't Quite Mesh

All the ingredients are her for me to adore Frank. You've got a quirky premise surrounding a bunch of musical fun, a standout performance by one of the world's best actors, a mix of the somber and the slapstick all... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: IMPERIAL DREAMS Is A Taut, Effective Social Drama

About two-thirds the way through Malik Vitthal's remarkable film, the lead character makes it plain - he's just trying "to do the right thing."Back in 1989, another African American filmmaker showed how doing the right thing wasn't always easy. Spike's... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: RICH HILL Is A Striking Look At Poverty In America

When writing/directing team Andrew Droz Palermo and Tracy Droz Tragos focus their lens on three kids growing up in the ramshackle Missouri town of Rich Hill, it's not a pretty picture that is captured. Once a thriving mining village, now... More »
By Sean Smithson   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: The U.S. vs THE NOTORIOUS MR. BOUT Examines A "Merchant Of Death"

The Pussy Riot documentary, Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer, had its world premiere last year at Sundance. The doc was co-directed by Russian filmmaker Maxin Pozdorovkin, who now is teamed with a different director (Tony Gerber), but returned to the... More »
  

Sundance 2014 Review: LIAR'S DICE Gives A Rising Star Another Chance To Shine

Indian independent cinema has been on the rise for the last couple of years. A rapid increase in visibility and growing interest in the biggest film industry in the world have fed this sudden surge in homespun tales of life... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: DRUNKTOWN'S FINEST, A Compelling Snapshot Of Contemporary Navajo Life

It may be a controversial statement, but this movie, that recently premiered at Sundance 2014, is better and maybe more enjoyable than Alejandro González Iñarritu's film of interconnected stories, Babel (I choose this one because it's the most recent of that... More »
  

Sundance 2014 Review: THE OVERNIGHTERS Packs A Powerful Punch

It's a rare and beautiful thing when a film can surprise you. I was taken completely off guard by The Overnighters, a film that I figured would be a stark if a bit earnest take on post-recession America. What I... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: NO NO: A DOCKUMENTARY With Soul Power

"I pitched every game in the Major Leagues under the influence of drugs," reveals Dock Ellis, the late baseball player who in 1970 threw a "no-no" (no-hitter) for the Pittsburgh Pirates while he was high on LSD. This is the... More »
  

Sundance 2014 Review: WEB JUNKIE Presents A Balanced Case

How many hours do you spend at your computer every day? Six? Ten? Eight? Well, if you answer any of those or more, according to the People's Republic of China you have a disability, a problem, a sickness, an addiction.... More »
  

Sundance 2014 Review: KILLERS Is A Brilliant Rumination On Our Violent Ways

Killers, the latest from by Timothy Tjahjanto and Kimo Stomboel (aka, "The Mo Brothers"), is many things. It is a dark, stylish, somber, almost post-modern take on genre tropes. It is elegantly presented with impressive performances. It is a horrific... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: Farsi Vampire Western A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT Barely Gets By On Novelty

Yes. You read that right. A vampire western with a Farsi speaking cast. It's moody, and steely, and chock full of Lynchian atmosphere broadened by a Leone-esque scope. It's also in black and white and widescreen. If this doesn't sound... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: THE DISOBEDIENT Is A Marvelously Absurdist Abstraction Of Young Adulthood

About half way into Serbian director Mina Djukic's feature debut, our heroes, Leni and Lazar (childhood loves reunited) get caught in a rather curious rain shower. As if by magic conjured by the cinematic gods themselves, the sunny summer fields... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: THE RAID 2 Sets a New High Point for Violent Action Cinema

It was no hyperbole when we called The Raid: Redemption "the best action movie in decades." That film redefined martial arts cinema for the 21st century and announced Gareth Evans as one of the most exciting young directors working... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: MEMPHIS Is A Truly Mesmerizing Meditation On The American South

Dusk. A blue summer day ending on a worn and warm boulevard. The pin prick glow of street lamps dazzle in the distance. A figure lumbers down the block. A hat tipped to one side, he is lost in thought.... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS Will Make You Laugh 'Til You Bleed

From the opening title card that reads "New Zealand Documentary Film Council," it's pretty clear that What We Do in the Shadows is not going to be your typical vampire movie. Co-directed by Taika Waititi (Eagle Vs. Shark, Boy) and... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: In THE SKELETON TWINS Bill Hader Elevates An Otherwise Pedestrian American Dramedy

I've been here before. This all looks quite familiar. It's not quite deja vu though. The window dressing is different. They've swapped a cute dog for goldfish. I think that's a new couch. But that's the same ottoman.Craig Johnson's The... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: COOTIES Delivers Bloody Laughs

What happens when the creator of Saw and Insidious teams up with the creator of Glee? Cooties happens, a gleefully bloody crowd pleaser of a horror-comedy weighted more towards the comedy end of the spectrum blessed with a sterling cast... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Sundance 2014 First Impression: THE RAID 2 Is More Epic Than We Ever Imagined

What is perhaps the most anticipated film of 2014, at least for most of us at Twitch, made its world premiere this evening at the Sundance Film Festival and suffice to say, the sequel does not disappoint. Clocking in... More »
By Ryland Aldrich   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: LISTEN UP PHILIP Asks For Sympathy For The Asshole

A few years back Alex Ross Perry caught the eye of many in the American independent scene with his second feature, the delightfully awful (or is that awfully delightful?) The Color Wheel. A sibling road tripper with the penchant for... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Sundance 2014 Review: Thumbs Up For Roger Ebert Doc LIFE ITSELF

If you do what I do -- cherish film and have the chutzpah to tell other people what you think about them -- then you're almost certainly indebted to Roger Ebert. I've documented at length the effect that he had... More »
By Jason Gorber   
  
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