Joe is flying the friendly skies back to Blockbuster World Headquarters as I type this. Here is his final dispatch from Sundance 2010.
I’m now leaving Park City and heading back to Dallas, but I wanted to share my thoughts on the last few films I saw.
Blue Valentine, starring Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling, is the story of a marriage falling apart, interspersed with scenes of how the couple fell in love in the first place. So it’s very much a character piece, and the two leads are great — they definitely pull it off.
The Runaways documents the rise of the 70s band of the same name featuring Cheri Currie and Joan Jett. Dakota Fanning and Kristen Stewart play the two young musicians, detailing their journey from teenage girls to rock stars. The movie was based on Currie’s autobiography. Both the actresses did a really good job, and it was one of the better films I saw at this year’s festival.
HIGH School stars Michael Chiklis, Colin Hanks, and Adrien Brody. As you can probably tell by the title, it’s a stoner comedy. The audience I saw it with was made up mostly of the cast and their friends and family, so there were a lot of laughs that obviously came from inside jokes, but I did think the movie was pretty funny. It almost seemed liked Tom Hanks told his son to make his own Bachelor Party. It’ll be a fun rent.
The final movie I saw before I left this morning was The Killer Inside Me starring Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba, and Kate Hudson. It’s a serial killer movie set in a small town in the 50s. Affleck plays the sheriff of the town, and he’s a little off, to say the least. Everything kind of spirals out of control as the bodies pile up. It was definitely one of my favorite movies of the festival.
I’m also hearing good things about Buried, a story that depicts a man (Ryan Reynolds) who has been buried alive in Iraq. It seems impossible to make a 90-minute film set entirely in a coffin, but people are saying it’s really good. It starts with the first five minute or so of total blackness and sounds of someone panicking, but then the main character begins to interact with people on his cell phone, etc. Sounds like an interesting one.
To sum up, I would say Sundance 2010 wasn’t the best I’ve been to, but it was a good one. Of course, you have to keep in mind that I only saw 14 movies out of the well over 100 titles being screened, so I could have had a very different experience from others.