10 Must See Films for Sundance (Part 1)

Sundance happens annually in our backyard. It's no wonder we like to nerd out on the independent films that come through our small ski town of Park City. This year promises to be a revolutionary year with some poignant, terrifying and innovative story telling. We'll try to represent all of those in this list rather than the 10 most award-winning contenders. Here's your ugly guide to Sundance 2016:

The story of 1970s TV reporter Christine Chubbuck who committed suicide on live air during a news broadcast. A tragic story that shares the  story of a promising reporter who struggled with depression. 

Director: Antonio Campos
Writer: Craig Shilowich
Stars: Rebecca HallMichael C. HallMaria Dizzia

A story that promises to be interesting. A stranded man (Dano) finds a corpse (Radcliffe) that he "befriends" while trying to survive. I'm thinking Cast Away where Wilson is replaced by a human. We'll take a look and have a review for you soon.

Directors: Dan KwanDaniel Scheinert
Writers: Dan KwanDaniel Scheinert
Stars: Paul DanoDaniel RadcliffeMary Elizabeth Winstead

Nat Turner, a former slave in America, leads a liberation movement in 1831 to free African-Americans in Virgina that results in a violent retaliation from whites. Promises to be poignant and moving. 

Director: Nate Parker
Writers: Jean McGianni Celestin (story), Nate Parker(screenplay), 1 more credit »
Stars: Armie HammerPenelope Ann MillerGabrielle Union

Organic, spontaneous, sexy dances progress chronologically through Afro-Cuban Santería rumba, mambo, cha-cha-chá, salsa, breakdancing, and reggaeton, with optional audio tracks reflecting the broader story of Cuban history as revealed in the moves. This is part of Sundance's New Frontier program which this year features Virtual Reality projects that promise to transport you and experience stories in more immersive ways. 

Lead Artist: Lucy Walker
Performers: Ballet de la Televisión Cubana

Part crime caper gone awry, part survival horror film, this 1970s set thriller depicts a harrowing fight for survival after a pair of wannabe crooks botch a bank heist and flee into the desert, where they inexplicably stumble upon Carnage Park, a remote stretch of wilderness occupied by a psychotic ex-military sniper. I know, it sounds a bit campy, but I kinda like this type of film. 

Director: Mickey Keating
Writer: Mickey Keating
Stars: Darby StanchfieldAshley BellAlan Ruck 

That's it for this edition. Come back tomorrow for the second half and stay Ugly.


Shadna Aum