Sundance Film Festival organizers have announced their 2010 competition line up in the US and World Narrative and Documentary Features catagories. The movies offer quite a range of material, and it should make for a very interesting festival.
State Of Independence will be covering Sundance, as well as Slamdance, in January here on the site, on the State of Independence podcast, and also on Subject:CINEMA's Fourth Annual Fethival Of Film Fethivals, and the PNR Blogs will do our best to keep up with all the news for you. In the meantime, here's the list of films announced today:
U.S. DRAMATIC COMPETITION
Blue Valentine (Director: Derek Cianfrance; screenwriters: Derek Cianfrance, Cami Delavigne, Joey Curtis). A portrait of an American marriage over time. Cast: Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams, Mike Vogel, John Doman.
Douchebag (Director: Drake Doremus; screenwriters: Lindsay Stidham, Drake Doremus, Jonathan Schwartz, Andrew Dickler). On the verge of getting married, Sam insists he escort his younger brother, Tom, on a wild goose chase to find Tom's fifth grade girlfriend. Cast: Andrew Dickler, Ben York Jones, Marguerite Moreau, Nicole Vicius, Amy Ferguson, Wendi McClendon-Covey.
The Dry Land (Director-screenwriter: Ryan Piers Williams). A U.S. soldier returning home from war struggles to reconcile his experiences abroad with the life he left in Texas. Cast: America Ferrera, Wilmer Valderrama, Ethan Suplee, June Diane Raphael, Melissa Leo.
screenwriter: Josh Radnor). Six New Yorkers negotiate love, friendship and gratitude at a time when they're too old to be precocious and not ready to be adults. Cast: Malin Akerman, Josh Radnor, Kate Mara, Zoe Kazan, Tony Hale, Pablo Schreiber, Michael Algieri.
Hesher (Director: Spencer Susser; screenwriters: Spencer Susser, David Michod). A mysterious, anarchical trickster descends on the lives of a family struggling to deal with a painful loss. Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Natalie Portman, Rainn Wilson, Devin Brochu, Piper Laurie, John Carroll Lynch.
Holy Rollers (Director: Kevin Tyler Asch; screenwriter: Antonio Macia). A young Hasidic man, seduced by money, power and opportunity, becomes an international Ecstasy smuggler. Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Justin Bartha, Danny A. Abeckaser, Ari Graynor, Jason Fuchs.
Howl (Directors-screenwriters: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman). A nonfiction drama about young Allen Ginsberg finding his voice, the creation of his groundbreaking poem and the landmark obscenity trial that followed. Cast: James Franco, David Strathairn, Jon Hamm, Mary-Louise Parker, Jeff Daniels.
The Imperialists are Still Alive! (Director-screenwriter: Zeina Durra). Juggling the abduction of her childhood sweetheart as well as a blooming love affair, a French Manhattanite makes her way as an artist in a hostile world. Cast: Elodie Bouchez, Jose Maria de Tavira, Karim Saleh Karolina Muller, Marianna Kulukundis, Rita Ackerman.
Lovers of Hate (Director-screenwriter: Bryan Poyser). The shaky reunion of estranged brothers takes a turn for the worse when the woman they both love chooses one over the other. Cast: Chris Doubek, Heather Kafka, Alex Karpovsky, Zach Green.
Night Catches Us (Director-screenwriter: Tanya Hamilton). In 1978, political and emotional forces are set in motion when a young man returns to the race-torn Philadelphia neighborhood where he came of age during the Black Power movement. Cast: Anthony Mackie, Kerry Washington, Jamie Hector, Wendell Pierce, Jamara Griffin.
Obselidia (Director-screenwriter: Diane Bell). A lonely librarian believes love is obsolete until a road trip to Death Valley with a beguiling cinema projectionist teaches him otherwise. Cast: Gaynor Howe, Michael Piccirilli, Frank Hoyt Taylor.
Skateland (Director: Anthony Burns; screenwriters: Anthony Burns, Brandon Freeman, Heath Freeman). In the early 1980s in small-town Texas, dramatic events force a 19-year-old skating-rink manager to look at his life in a new way. Cast: Shiloh Fernandez, A.J. Buckley, Ashley Greene, Brett Cullen, Ellen Hollman, Heath Freeman.
Sympathy for Delicious (Director: Mark Ruffalo; screenwriter: Christopher Thornton). A newly paralyzed DJ gets more than he bargained for when he seeks out the world of faith healing. Cast: Orlando Bloom, Mark Ruffalo, Juliette Lewis, Laura Linney, John Carroll Lynch.
3 Backyards (Director-screenwriter: Eric Mendelsohn). A quiet suburban town becomes an intense emotional terrain for three residents over the course of one curious autumn day. Cast: Embeth Davidtz, Edie Falco, Elias Koteas, Rachel Resheff, Kathryn Erbe, Danai Gurira.
Welcome to the Rileys (Director: Jake Scott). On a business trip to New Orleans, a damaged man seeks salvation by caring for a wayward young woman. Cast: James Gandolfini, Kristen Stewart, Melissa Leo.
Winter's Bone (Director: Debra Granik; screenwriters: Debra Granik, Anne Rosellini). An unflinching Ozark Mountain girl hacks through dangerous social terrain as she hunts down her drug-dealing father. Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes, Lauren Sweetser, Kevin Breznahan, Isaiah Stone.
U.S. DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
Bhutto (Directors: Duane Baughman, Johnny O'Hara; screenwriter: Johnny O'Hara). A journey through the life and work of recently assassinated Benazir Bhutto, former Pakistani prime minister.
CASINO JACK & the United States of Money (Director: Alex Gibney). An investigation into the lies, greed and corruption surrounding D.C. superlobbyist Jack Abramoff and his cronies.
Family Affair (Director: Chico Colvard). A documentary that examines resilience, survival and the capacity to accommodate a parent's past crimes in order to satisfy the longing for family.
Freedom Riders (Director: Stanley Nelson). The story behind a band of civil rights activists called the Freedom Riders who in 1961 creatively challenged segregation in the American South.
Gas Land (Director: Josh Fox). A cross-country odyssey uncovers toxic streams, dying livestock, flammable sinks and weakening health among rural citizens on the front lines of the natural gas drilling craze.
Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child (Director: Tamra Davis). The story of artist Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work (Directors: Ricki Stern, Annie Sundberg). A glimpse into the comedic process and private dramas of the legendary comedian and pop icon.
Lucky (Director: Jeffrey Blitz). The story of what happens when people hit the lottery jackpot.
My Perestroika (Director: Robin Hessman). Tracking the lives of five Muscovites who came of age just as the USSR collapsed.
The Oath (Director: Laura Poitras). Filmed in Yemen, the story of two men whose fateful encounter in 1996 set them on a course of events that led them to Afghanistan, Osama bin Laden, 9/11, Guantanamo and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Restrepo (Directors: Sebastian Junger, Tim Hetherington). Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington's year dug in with the Second Platoon in one of Afghanistan's most strategically crucial valleys reveals insight into the combination of back-breaking labor, deadly firefights and camaraderie.
A Small Act (Director: Jennifer Arnold). A young Kenyan's life changes when his education is sponsored by a Swedish stranger.
Smash His Camera (Director: Leon Gast). Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis sued him, and Marlon Brando broke his jaw. The story of notorious, reviled paparazzo Ron Galella.
12th & Delaware (Directors: Rachel Grady, Heidi Ewing). The abortion battle continues to rage in unexpected ways on an unassuming corner in America.
I'm Pat _______ Tillman (Director: Amir Bar-Lev). The story of the professional football star and decorated U.S. soldier.
Waiting for Superman (Director: Davis Guggenheim). Examines the crisis of public education in the U.S. through multiple interlocking stories.
WORLD CINEMA DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
Enemies of the People (Directors: Rob Lemkin, Thet Sambath). A young journalist whose family was killed by the Khmer Rouge befriends the perpetrators of the Killing Fields genocide. (Cambodia, U.K.)
Fix Me (Director: Raed Andoni). When Palestinian filmmaker Raed Andoni gets a headache that won't quit, he seeks out help and insight in different forms in his hometown of Ramallah. (France, Palestinian Territories, Switzerland)
His & Hers (Director: Ken Wardrop). Seventy Irish women offer insights into the relationships between women and men. (Ireland)
Kick in Iran (Director: Fatima Geza Abdollahyan). The first female professional Taekwondo fighter from Iran to qualify for the Olympic Games struggles for recognition in a society where women still play a subordinate role. (Germany)
Last Train Home (Director: Lixin Fan). Getting a train ticket in China proves a towering ordeal as a migrant worker family embarks on a journey, along with 200 million other peasants, to reunite with their distant family. (Canada)
What Remains (Director: Yael Hersonski). Film reels uncovered in Nazi archives reveal the mechanisms used to stage Warsaw Ghetto life. (Germany, Israel)
The Red Chapel (Director: Mads Brugger). A journalist with no scruples, a self-proclaimed spastic and a comedian travel to North Korea under the guise of a cultural-exchange visit to challenge one of the world's most notorious regimes. (Denmark)
Russian Lessons (Directors: Olga Konskaya, Andrei Nekrasov). An investigation into Russian actions during the 2008 war in Georgia. (Georgia, Germany, Norway)
Secrets of the Tribe (Director: Jose Padilha). Scandal and infighting abound in the academic Anthropology community regarding the representation and exploitation of indigenous Indians in the Amazon Basin. (Brazil)
Sins of My Father (Director: Nicolas Entel).
The life and times of notorious Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar are recounted through the eyes of his son. (Argentina, Colombia)
Space Tourists (Director: Christian Frei). A humorous view of the way billionaires depart Earth to travel into space for fun. (Switzerland)
Waste Land (Director: Lucy Walker). Lives are transformed when international art star Vik Muniz collaborates with garbage pickers in the world's largest landfill in Rio de Janeiro. (U.K.)
WORLD CINEMA NARRATIVE COMPETITION
All That I Love (Director-screenwriter: Jacek Borcuch). In 1981, during the growing Polish Solidarity movement, four small-town teenagers form a punk-rock band. (Poland)
Animal Kingdom (Director-screenwriter: David Michod). After the death of his mother, a 17-year-old boy is thrust precariously between an explosive criminal family and a detective who thinks he can save him. (Australia)
Boy (Director-screenwriter: Taika Waititi). When his father returns home after many years away, 11-year-old Boy and his little brother Rocky must reconcile reality with the fantasy dad they created in their imagination. (New Zealand)
Undertow (Director-screenwriter: Javier Fuentes-Leon). An unusual ghost story set on the Peruvian seaside. (Colombia, France, Germany, Peru)
Peepli Live (Director-screenwriter: Anusha Rizvi). A satirical look at the predicament of a poor farmer who creates a media frenzy when, beset with debt, he announces that he will commit suicide so his family can receive government compensation. (India)
Four Lions (Director: Chris Morris; screenwriters: Chris Morris, Jesse Armstrong, Sam Bain). A comedy about a bunch of self-styled British jihadis. (U.K.)
Grown Up Movie Star (Director-screenwriter: Adriana Maggs). After her mother runs away, a teenage girl is left to care for her hopelessly rural father. (Canada)
The Man Next Door (Directors-screenwriters: Mariano Cohn, Gaston Duprat). Dark comedy about two neighbors sparring over a wall separating their property. (Argentina)
Me Too (Directors-screenwriters: Alvaro Pastor and Antonio Naharro). A 34-year-old college-educated man with Down syndrome and his free-spirited co-worker forge an unconventional relationship. (Spain)
Nuummioq (Directors: Otto Rosing, Torben Bech; Screenwriter: Torben Bech). A young man's journey through the natural landscape of Greenland. (Greenland)
Son of Babylon (Director-screenwriter: Mohamed Al Daradji). In the days after the fall of Saddam Hussein, a young Kurdish boy and his grandmother venture through Iraq on a quest to find the remains of their missing father/son. (Iraq)
Southern District (Director-screenwriter: Juan Carlos Valdivia). In La Paz, Bolivia, an upper-class family experiences the final halcyon days of luxury. (Bolivia)
The Temptation of St. Tony (Director-screenwriter: Veiko Ounpuu). A midlevel manager who develops an aversion to being "good" finds himself confronting the mysteries of middle age. (Estonia)
Vegetarian (Director-screenwriter: Lim Woo-seong). A housewife finds herself having strange dreams that make her disgusted by meat. (South Korea)