Magazine article Screen International

Wingard, Swanberg among Sundance Midnight Line-Up

Magazine article Screen International

Wingard, Swanberg among Sundance Midnight Line-Up

Article excerpt

Sundance organisers announced on Dec 1 the out-of-competition sections Spotlight, Park City At Midnight, NEXT <=> and New Frontier.

The Midnight roster includes V/H/S, a series of vignettes shot by genre heroes Adam Wingard, Ti West and Joe Swanberg among others, Black Rock from Sundance 2010 alumnus Katie Aselton reteaming with Mark Duplass, and the comedy Tim And Eric's Billion Dollar Movie from Will Ferrell collaborators Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim.

Spotlight entries are Gareth Evans' Toronto hit The Raid and Andrea Arnold's Wuthering Heights. NEXT <=> includes Anne Heche in That's What She Said and Chris Messina in TWENTY-EIGHT HOTEL ROOMS.

Festival director of programming Trevor Groth said: "In many ways, the extremes of the festival's programme are most readily apparent in our out-of-competition sections, which showcase the wildest comedies, the most terrifying horror films and uncompromised visions from singular voices springing up from around the country and the world. We hope audiences experiment with their film selections to an equal degree as these filmmakers have experimented with their storytelling."

All films listed below, except for Spotlight, are world premieres unless stated otherwise. The festival provided all synopses.

SPOTLIGHTRegardless of where these films have played throughout the world, the Spotlight programme is a tribute to the cinema we love.

Corpo Celeste (Italy)Director and screenwriter: Alice RohrwacherAfter moving back to southern Italy with her mother and older sister, 13-year-old Marta struggles to find her place, restlessly testing the boundaries of an unfamiliar city and the catechism of the Catholic church.Cast: Yle Vianello, Salvatore Cantalupo, Anita Caprioli, Renato Carpentiere.

Declaration Of War (Belgium)Director: Valérie Donzelli. Screenwriters: Jérémie Elkaïm, Valérie DonzelliA young couple embark upon a painful, enlightening journey when they discover that their newborn child is very ill.Cast: Valérie Donzelli, Jérémie Elkaïm, César Desseix. North American Premiere

Elena (Russia)Director: Andrei Zvyagintsev. Screenwriter: Oleg NeginA meditative, modern-noir tale about an older woman, Elena, who marries the wealthy business man for whom she worked and, when his health fails, is forced to deal with his estranged daughter who threatens her inheritance.Cast: Andrey Smirnov, Nadezhda Markina, Elena Lyadova, Alexey Rozin.

Monsieur Lazhar (Canada)Director and screenwriter: Philippe FalardeauAn elegant reflection on loss and death focused on an Algerian immigrant teacher who brings emotional stability to a Montreal middle school class shaken by the suicide of their well-liked teacher.Cast: Fellag, Sophie Nélisse, Émilien Néron, Danielle Proulx, Brigitte Poupart.

The Orator (O le Tulafale) (New Zealand)Director and screenwriter: Tusi TamaseseA Samoan villager must defend his land and family when they are threatened by powerful adversaries.Cast: Fa'afiaula Sagote, Tausili Pushparaj, Salamasina Mataia, Ioata Tanielu.

The Raid (Indonesia)Director and screenwriter: Gareth EvansAll hell breaks loose when an elite SWAT team, given orders to raid a run-down Jakarta apartment building that houses the city's most notorious crime boss, is forced to fight their way to freedom or die trying.Cast: Iko Uwais, Yayan Ruhian, Joe Taslim, Doni Alamsyah.US Premiere

Where Do We Go Now? (France-Lebanon-Italy-Egypt)Director: Nadine Labaki. Screenwriters: Nadine Labaki, Jihad Hojeily, Rodney Al Haddad, with the collaboration of Thomas BidegainA group of Lebanese women try to ease religious tensions between Christians and Muslims in their village.Cast: Claude Baz Moussawbaa, Layla Hakim, Nadine Labaki, Yvonne Maalouf, Antoinette Noufaily.US Premiere

Wuthering Heights (United Kingdom)Director: Andrea Arnold. Screenwriters: Andrea Arnold, Olivia HetreedA freshly conceived retelling of Emily Bronte's classic novel about Heathcliff and Cathy, two teenagers whose passionate love for each other creates a storm of vengeance. …

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