Film Festival

ShowbuzzDaily’s Sundance 2022 Reviews: “Living,” “Call Jane” & “Watcher”

Posted January 22, 2022 by Mitch Salem

  LIVING (no distrib):  Over the years, there’s periodically been talk about remaking Akira Kurosawa’s 1952 masterpiece Ikiru, including a rumored updated US version that would have starred Tom Hanks in the lead.  We finally have an English-language Ikiru in the more modest form of Oliver Hermanus’s Living, from a screenplay by the famed novelist […]

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Film Festival

ShowbuzzDaily Sundance 2022 Reviews: “When You Finish Saving The World” & “Fresh”

Posted January 21, 2022 by Mitch Salem

  It’s the second consecutive Virtual Sundance, with safety, convenience and isolation in place of weather, shuttle buses and community.  Over the next several days, we’ll be bringing you reviews of several Sundance premieres, some of which will find their way into theaters, with more likely to make their public appearances via VOD and streaming […]

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Film Festival

Full SHOWBUZZDAILY Virtual Sundance Reviews

Posted February 3, 2021 by Mitch Salem

This may be heresy, but the virtual Sundance Film Festival went so smoothly that if they offered it as an option in a hopefully pandemic-free 2022, I’d seriously consider passing up the freezing weather and the waits for delayed, packed shuttle buses to stay at home.  Sure, I’d miss the communal experience, but on the […]

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Film Festival

SHOWBUZZDAILY Virtual Sundance Reviews: “On the Count of Three” & “Ma Belle, My Beauty”

Posted February 3, 2021 by Mitch Salem

  ON THE COUNT OF THREE:  There was a well-deserved Sundance screenwriting prize for Ari Katcher and Ryan Welch’s script for Jerrod Carmichael’s big-screen directing debut, which threads an almost impossible needle as a comedy about suicidal depression.  (In an unintentional way, the film is a companion piece to the festival’s How It Ends, also […]

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Film Festival

SHOWBUZZDAILY Virtual Sundance Reviews: “Mayday” and “Prisoners Of the Ghostland”

Posted February 2, 2021 by Mitch Salem

  MAYDAY:  The fantasy whatzit is a Sundance staple, and Mayday fits into that category.  (Paradise Hills was a recent example from a past festival.)  Ana (Grace Van Patten), short for Anastasia, is an ignored and abused waitress who finds herself swimming through a portal to what turns out to be an otherwise deserted island […]

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Film Festival

SHOWBUZZDAILY Virtual Sundance Reviews: “The World To Come” & “Jockey”

Posted February 2, 2021 by Mitch Salem

  THE WORLD TO COME (Bleecker Street – March 2):  Although the story is set in 1856, this is 2021, so it’s not hard to see where Mona Fastvold’s The World To Come is heading.  Ron Hansen and Jim Shepard’s script begins in the dead of winter, in the wilderness that was upstate New York […]

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Film Festival

SHOWBUZZDAILY Virtual Sundance Review: “Judas and the Black Messiah”

Posted February 1, 2021 by Mitch Salem

  JUDAS AND THE BLACK MESSIAH (Warners/HBO Max – February 12):  The title refers to the FBI informant Bill O’Neal (played here by LaKeith Stanfield) and the Illinois Black Panthers leader Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya).  Although Hampton was only 21 years old, he was so charismatic and successful–he had put together a local coalition that […]

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Film Festival

SHOWBUZZDAILY Virtual Sundance Reviews: “Eight For Silver” & “The Sparks Brothers”

Posted February 1, 2021 by Mitch Salem

  EIGHT FOR SILVER:  Sean Ellis’s 19th century werewolf movie takes itself very seriously.  Ellis has extensively revised the usual mythology of the genre:  the full moon doesn’t figure into things, the werewolf curse dates back to biblical times and relates to a set of silver teeth, there’s a political dimension to the story, and […]

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