You can’t make a movie like Dope without a ton of passion. Every frame, every character, every decision comes from a love not just of cinema, but for pop culture as a whole. The film’s writer and director Rick Famuyiwa is a massive film fan and geek who cites Spielberg, Lucas, and calls Back to the Future his favorite movie of all time.
However, looking as Famuyiwa’s resume, odds are you didn’t know any of that. Before making Dope, he directed The Wood, Brown Sugar and Our Family Wedding. Three financially successful films, yes, but none of which are known for Dope‘s sense of youthful exuberance. It feels like, after that formidable foray into filmmaking, Famuyiwa is finally hitting his stride. Dope is a confident film, a fun film, and a great film to discuss.
Which is exactly what we did. We spoke with Famyuiwa on the occasion of Dope, which opens Friday June 19, and talked about the film’s complex tone. Its use of pop culture references, issues with music, how it changed from its Sundance premiere to now, as well as the meaning of “geek” in the film. We broke down two of the best sequences in the movie and found out whether or not the director has been approached to make any major studio blockbusters. Below, read our Rick Famuyiwa Dope interview. Read More »
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If you’ve ever taken an introductory psychology class, you’ve probably heard of the infamous Stanford Prison Experiment. The idea behind the experiment was to take student volunteers and put them into a simulated jail where some of the students were made to be prisoners and others were made to be guards. The intention was to study human nature, but those conducting the experiment didn’t realize the humanity part of the experiment would go out the window so quickly.
The aptly titled indie The Stanford Prison Experiment chronicles the results of the test as the unfold, and the result is an unnerving drama that shows you how prison, whether you’re a prisoner or a guard, can change a person entirely.
Watch The Stanford Prison Experiment trailer after the jump! Read More »
Editor’s Note: Below is our review of from the Sundance Film Festival. We’re republishing it now that Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is open in limited release. Find theaters here.
On paper, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl doesn’t seem particularly exciting. An adaptation of a book by Jesse Andrews, it’s the story of a high school senior who is forced to become friends with a school acquaintance who is diagnosed with leukemia.
Interesting, yes but not that exciting. Thankfully, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl isn’t merely on paper. It’s a film — in fact, a film that loves film, celebrates film, and is very much about the medium – with beautiful shot composition, tense long takes and elaborate tracking shots. It tells a touching and incredibly funny story with very realistic, honest characters and enough self-awareness to make it all feel modern. Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and adapted by Andrews, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl had its world premiere at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival this weekend. Read our Me and Earl and the Dying Girl review here. Read More »
After losing the role of Spider-Man (though we don’t know to who just yet), it appears the bad luck is continuing for Andrew Garfield in the trailer for the Sundance selected indie drama 99 Homes. The film made our Best of Sundance list back in January, and it’s slated to arrive in select theaters this fall.
Now you can see what all the buzz is about in the powerful trailer for the film that also stars Michael Shannon and Laura Dern. Watch the 99 Homes trailer after the jump! Read More »
After playing the 2015 Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, plenty of indies will be headed to theaters as the year goes on. This summer will bring quite a few as counter-programming to the big studio projects crowding the multiplexes, and one of those films is the charming comedic drama Unexpected. The film stars Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother, Avengers: Age of Ultron) and Anders Holm (Workaholics) as a couple dealing with an unplanned pregnancy. Now the Unexpected trailer has arrived for you to check out after the jump. Read More »
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Sean Baker‘s Sundance smash Tangerine stands out in a couple of ways. For one thing, it chronicles the Christmas Eve misadventures of two transgender prostitutes — not a premise we see on film very often. For another, it was shot entirely on an iPhone 5. But beyond that, it seems worth checking out simply because it looks damn interesting.
Newcomers Kitana Kiki Rodriguez and Mya Taylor are instantly compelling as Sin-Dee and Alexandra, two BFFs working the streets of LA, and their journey takes them through some of LA’s more obscure corners and subcultures. Watch the Tangerine trailer after the jump. Read More »
Editor’s Note: This review originally ran during the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. We’re rerunning it now that It Follows is in limited release.
Sometimes, the scariest thing isn’t what’s around the corner. It’s what’s right in front of you. In It Follows, writer director David Robert Mitchell has created a simple, perfect, and bone-chillingly terrifying horror conceit that doesn’t need blood or jump scares. It doesn’t even, necessarily, need special effects. In It Follows a normal person, walking, is enough to scare the living crap out of you.
Below, read our It Follows review which will tell you why it’s one of the scariest horror films in years. Read More »
Misery Loves Comedy is one of the films I wish I could have seen at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. It was presented as a special screening, slotted at a very inconvenient time all the way on the top of Main Street at the Egyptian. Thankfully, actor/comedian Kevin Pollak‘s documentary film was sold at Sundance to Tribeca Film, which will allow all of us to see it when it is released on iTunes on April 14th and in limited theaters on April 24th 2015. The documentary features over 60 famous funny people “featured in this hilarious twist on the age-old truth: misery loves company.” Hit the jump to watch the Misery Loves Comedy trailer, and leave your thoughts int he comments below.
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These are the movies sold at Sundance 2015. Many of the films that premiere at the Sundance Film Festival are hoping to attract a distributor and find a bigger audience, be it in theaters around the country or distributed through digital VOD. Throughout the festival we will be reporting on all of the movies sold at Sundance 2015. This list should help give you an idea about which movies may someday be available to you either theatrically of VOD. We’re including photo stills from each of the films along with all of the relevant information (director, cast, how much it sold for, the plot synopsis and more). Hit the jump to find out which movies sold at Sundance 2015.
Latest update: Samuel L. Goldwyn will release Lila and Eve starring Viola Davis and Jennifer Lopez.
Previous update: Jemaine Clement’s People, Places, Things is picked up by The Film Arcade.
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