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Archive for January 25th, 2008

Sundance Diary: Day 8

Friday, January 25th, 2008

Day 8 (Thursday, January 24):

I’m not even going to brag anymore. I was up at 8:45 a.m. I’ve successfully gotten up at a reasonable hour every day of the festival. I have not overslept and missed anything I was supposed to see. It is a major victory for me in the ongoing battle between me and myself. I will win this war yet! I will not allow myself to triumph!

The weather continued to be lousy today. In years past we’ve generally lucked out and had maybe one day of snow during Sundance, while the remaining days were clear (though still cold). But this year it’s snowed at least a little bit almost every day. IT IS ANNOYING. I intend to register a complaint with Robert Redford, if I can find the hollow tree he lives in.

It was a light day, movie-wise. Several of the press screenings were for films I simply had no interest in seeing — documentaries about lint, or angsty German dramas about bored housewives, that sort of thing. I also needed a good, long chunk of time to write. It’s hard to get anything done when you’re doing it in half-hour spurts. By the time you find a place to sit down, get out your laptop, connect to the wifi, check your e-mail, get up to go to the bathroom, grab a snack from the concessions stand, chat with whichever pal you run into, and complain about the weather, it’s almost time to pack it up and go to the next screening. So I needed some real time to do some real work.

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Friday movie roundup – Jan. 25

Friday, January 25th, 2008

It’s galling to even consider such rudeness, but Hollywood insists upon releasing new films even when I’m busy with the Sundance Film Festival. At least they had the courtesy to hide two of them from us.

“Rambo” and “Meet the Spartans” are probably destined for the greatest box office success of today’s new releases, and they are both HOLLYWOOD’S SHAMEFUL SECRETS©®™ (movies not screened for critics, almost always because they’re bad). Lionsgate was evidently shamed into holding last-minute screenings of “Rambo” in some markets, but not all, and not in a timely fashion.

Also opening is “How She Move,” a rather good urban dance movie that actually premiered at Sundance last year. That’s not a guarantee of quality, of course, but it is usually a sign that there’s something out-of-the-norm about it. It’s worth seeing, particularly for the dance sequences.

Another film that debuted at Sundance last year that’s now in theaters is “Teeth,” a comedy/horror about a teenage girl who has fangs in her lady parts. (You know … THOSE parts.) It’s definitely one of the best vagina dentata movies I’ve ever seen.

I see that I’m in the minority regarding Woody Allen’s new dramatic thriller “Cassandra’s Dream,” but I like it. It will remind you of yesteryear, when you liked Colin Farrell.

Finally, “Untraceable” opens today and was duly screened. But the screening was Tuesday, when I was knee-deep in Sundance coverage. I’ll try to hit it (and “Rambo” and possibly even “Meet the Spartans,” but don’t hold your breath) when I get back to Portland.

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