Two friends move from Wisconsin to San Fransisco and soon realize their crotchety, old next door neighbors argue constantly. And they’re crude. And loud. And it gets so annoying that the two friends begin to record the often hilarious arguments. Those recordings then made it out into the world and slowly but surely became not only an underground smash, but the inspiration for all kinds of art and merchandise. All the while the two friends who did the recordings reap the benefits without the people on the tapes even knowing they exist.

That’s the incredible true set-up of the documentary Shut Up Little Man! An Audio Misadventure, a film that not only tells this story, but investigates its roots, comments on cultural significance, morality, legality and much more. Read More »

The announcement of the movies playing the 2011 Sundance Film Festival is like looking into our film futures. It’s December and most movie fans are looking back at the last 12 months, picking out award winners, writing top ten lists, and chances are we haven’t even heard of the Sundance films. They’re just titles, people, words on a computer screen. Then in January they unspool on screens across Park City, Utah and become something more. Finally, months later, these are the movies we discuss with our friends and choose on ballots at awards parties. Yet we get to read about them now, a year in advance.

Last year at this time, who had heard of Four Lions, Catfish, Exit Through The Gift Shop, Blue Valentine, The Kids Are All Right, Winter’s Bone, Restrepo or Animal Kingdom? Sundance, that’s who. All those films screened at the 2010 festival and now many have become not only personal favorites, but critical darlings and award contenders too.

Wednesday, Sundance announced the 58 films eligible for awards in four categories that will play the 2011 festival, taking place January 20-30. The 57 out-of-competition films in six additional categories will be announced Thursday. After the jump, we’ll give you the full list as well as highlight five in each category that sound particular promising. Read More »