Sundance 2014 – Ten Must-See Films

14th January 2014 by
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Camp X-RaySundance 2014 – Ten Must-See Films

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the now venerable Sundance Film Festival. Its adolescent years are over but as this year’s boisterous line-up shows, the festival isn’t ready to go quietly into middle age.

Indeed, there’s a lot to choose from the Sundance 2014, January 16-26. But if the early buzz is any indication, these hot tickets are guaranteed to keep you warm while festing on the outer edge of the polar vortex.

God's Pocket

      1. God’s Pocket – John Slattery, well-known for his turn as the smooth-talking Roger Sterling on Mad Men, is making his directorial debut at this year’s festival with, “God’s Pocket,” starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Turturro, Richard Jenkins, and Mad Men co-star, Christina Hendricks about a crime cover-up in a small town.

Happy Christmas

    • Happy Christmas – Anna Kendrick is taking Sundance by storm this year starring in two films. “Happy Christmas” is the story of a young woman who moves in with her brother and his family after a hard break-up with her boyfriend, written and directed by Joe Swanberg, who also stars in the film alongside Lena Dunham, Melanie Lynskey, and Mark Webber.
    • The Voices – Kendrick stars alongside Ryan Reynolds in the psychological thriller, “The Voices,” written by Michael R. Perry, directed by Marjane Satrapi, co-starring Gemma Arterton, and Jacki Weaver. The story follows Reynolds as a mentally unstable factory worker who begins hearing advice from his dog and cat.

Listen Up Philip

  • Listen Up Phillip – Also lighting up the screen in double-time is another “Mad Men” alum, Elisabeth Moss in “Listen Up Philip,” written and directed by Alex Ross Perry; with Jason Schwartzman, Jonathan Pryce, Krysten Ritter, and Josephine de la Baume;
  • The One I Love – This time around Moss co-stars with Mark Duplass, who is also executive producing, as a troubled married couple who make a desperate attempt to save their marriage over a weekend getaway; written by Justin Lader and directed by well-known author, Charlie McDowell.
  • Whiplash – Heating things up to a beat is “Whiplash,” the story of a teenage drummer so determined to become a great jazz musician, he puts his life on the back burner pending his acceptance into his hard-driving mentor’s orchestra; written and directed by Damien Chazelle, starring Miles Teller, J.K. Simmons, and Paul Reiser.
  • Infinitely Polar Bear – Aptly titled for the freezing tundra that is Park City is “Infinitely Polar Bear;” the story of a bipolar father in the 1970’s, played by Mark Ruffalo, (“The Kids Are Alright”) trying to win his wife back by showing he can care for their two rambunctious daughters; starring Zoe Saldana, Imogene Wolodarsky, Ashley Aufderheide, Beth Dixon, and Keir Dullea; written and directed by Maya Forbes.
  • Low Down – John Hawkes (“The Sessions”) is back this year in the much anticipated, “Low Down,” starring as the drug-addicted jazz pianist, Joe Albany, in 1960’s and 70’s Hollywood as told through the eyes of his onscreen daughter, Elle Fanning; co-written by Topper Lilien and Amy Jo Albany based on Amy Jo Albany’s memoir; directed by Jeff Preiss; starring Glenn Close, Peter Dinklage, Lena Heady, and Flea.



Cold in July

  • Cold In July – If you need a cool-down after watching the above, check out, “Cold in July,” a hard-hitting drama about a small-town Texas man whose life unravels after killing an intruder in his home; co-written by Jim Mickle and Nick Damici based on Joe R. Landsdale’s novel and directed by Jim Mickle; starring Michael C. Hall (“Dexter”), Sam Shepard (“August: Osage County”), Don Johnson, Vinessa Shaw, and Wyatt Russell.
  • Camp X-Ray – Rounding out the top pics is “Camp X-Ray,” a dramatic feature written and directed by Peter Sattler and starring Kristen Stewart, Payman Maadi, Lane Garrison, J.J. Soria, John Carroll Lynch; story follows a female soldier stationed in Guantanamo Bay who befriends a prisoner.