Thursday, November 29, 2007

Excerpts from the Sundance '08 lineup.

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Just as regular audiences are now getting aquainted with the hits from last year's Sundance Film Festival, the boys and girls from Park City Utah announced their lineup of films that will be in next year's competition.

Below are some highlights in categorical order.

MOVIES I WANT TO SEE NOW:

CHOKE (Director and Screenwriter: Clark Gregg)—An adaptation of Chuck Palahniuk’s (Fight Club) novel [!], CHOKE is the sardonic story about mother and son relationship, fear of aging, sexual addiction, and the dark side of historical theme parks. Cast: Sam Rockwell [!], Anjelica Huston, Kelly MacDonald, Brad Henke. World Premiere

PATTI SMITH: DREAM OF LIFE (Director and Screenwriter: Steven Sebring)— An intimate portrait of music icon Patti Smith [!] that mirrors the essence of the artist herself. World Premiere

GONZO: THE LIFE AND WORK OF DR. HUNTER S. THOMPSON (Director: Alex Gibney)—Fueled by a raging libido, Wild Turkey, and superhuman doses of drugs, Thompson was a true "free lance," goring sacred cows with impunity, hilarity, and a steel-eyed conviction for writing wrongs. Focusing on the good doctor's heyday, 1965 to 1975, the film includes clips of never-before-seen (nor heard) home movies, audiotapes, and passages from unpublished manuscripts. World Premiere

ROMAN POLANSKI: WANTED AND DESIRED (Director: Marina Zenovich; Screenwriters: Marina Zenovich, Joe Bini, P.G. Morgan)— Marina Zenovich's new documentary examines the public scandal and private tragedy which led to legendary director Roman Polanski's sudden flight from the United States. World Premiere


(Looks like we FINALLY get a second film adaptation of a Palahniuk novel. I am sure that Yes!Weekly's Mark Burger is frothing at the mouth for the Polanski doc. Dude has Polish pride like no other.)

DOCUMENTARIES THAT WILL PROBABLY MAKE ME ANGRY:

IN PRISON MY WHOLE LIFE/ United Kingdom (Director: Marc Evans; Screenwriters: Marc Evans, William Francome)— A curious young filmmaker attempts to understand the true story behind award-winning journalist Mumia Abu Jamal’s death row sentence, and comes to startling realizations about American history and its justice system. With William Francome, Noam Chomsky, Alice Walker, Mos Def, Smoof , Snoop Dogg, Angela Davis . North American Premiere

THE GREATEST SILENCE: RAPE IN THE CONGO (Director and Screenwriter: Lisa F. Jackson)— Jackson travels to remote villages in the war zones of the Congo to meet rape survivors, providing a piercing, intimate look into the struggle of their lives. World Premiere


(Have of me wants to see these movies, while the other half knows they are going to make me very upset - if the filmmakers did their jobs, that is.)

-And lastly-

WHAT PLAYS IN SUNDANCE MUST STAY IN SUNDANCE (AKA 'BEEN THERE - DONE THAT'):

FIELDS OF FUEL (Director and Screenwriter: Josh Tickell)— America is addicted to oil and it is time for an intervention. Enter Josh Tickell, a man with a plan and a Veggie Van, who is taking on big oil, big government, and big soy to find solutions in places few people have looked. World Premiere

FLOW: FOR LOVE OF WATER (Director: Irena Salina)— Water is the very essence of life, sustaining every being on the planet. FLOW confronts the disturbing reality that our crucial resource is dwindling and greed just may be the cause. World Premiere


(I'm not being obtuse here, I'm just curious as to how many resources have been wasted on films about, well, wasting resources. Maybe that's a documentary I could make. The title could be The Inconvenience of Inconvenient Truths. How absurd that would be.

But seriously, how many movies will it take for humanity to realize we are destroying our planet? Not enough, apparently.)

You can read the rest of the Sundance '08 line up here.

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