Every winter, in Utah, the Sundance film festival is dedicated to making new cinematic voices known to the world. There is no shortage of characters already famous to the general public but the festival is considered above all a springboard for new directors. The festival was founded by Robert Redford in 1985, since then it has been the cradle of many independent productions.
Goodbye Robert Redford
On the opening day, Redford amazes everyone by announcing his retirement from the festival.
The founder claims to have spent a lot of time introducing novelties and does not think that the festival needs anything else. He thinks it’s time to step aside, he hinted that he wanted to spend more time in direct contact with the film-maker community instead of just introducing them.
During the press conference he recalled some of the first moments of the festival, in particular the opening night in which almost no one came, people looked at him curiously and wondered why he was out of the theater [VIDEO] .
Redford reiterated the importance of giving voice to independent cinema and hopes that more and more products will be created and recognized not for their economic value but for their intrinsic potential and for the purpose that the stories want to tell.
Italians at Sundance
Last year, the festival was the opening stage for Call me with your name by Luca Guadagnino, a film that brought home 4 Oscar nominations.
This year there will be another Italian producer in the race: Silvio Muraglia with After The Wedding.
After the wedding is a remake of the film with the same name of the year 2006.
The Danish drama was directed by Susanne Bier starring Mads Mikkelsen [VIDEO] and Sidse Babett Knudsen, achieved great success with critics and was nominated for an Academy Award in the foreign film category.
The remake of Muraglio is directed by Barth Freudlich and was presented out of competition on the opening day of the festival. The big difference with the original is that this time the story sees as protagonists two women who have followed very different paths of life. Interpreted by Julianne Moore and Michelle Williams, Theresa and Isabelle have followed very different paths of life, one is a career woman in New York while the other works in an orphanage in India; their meeting at the wedding of Theresa’s daughter will re-emerge a secret past.
The first films in competition: ‘The Sunlit Night’ and ‘Extremely Wicked’
The first film in competition presented at the festival was The Sunlit Night , based on the novel by Rebecca Dinerstein. The adaptation proposed by David Wnendt sees in the cast Jenny Slate , Alex Sharp, Zach Galifianakis , David Paymer and Gillian Anderson .
The story is set between beaches and Nordic landscapes, tells the story of characters with a chaotic life that will learn to appreciate their being “messed up”. The critics, including the reviewers Variety and Hollywood Reporter, has called it the perfect movie for the audience of Sundace, which seems to have greatly appreciated during the screening, but seems to lack the structure necessary to fully convince the general public not used to certain types of scripts.
The same problems seem to be found in the controversial film Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile by Berlinger. Totally opposed to the previous one, the film tells the story of the life of a well-known American serial killer, Ted Bundy, played by Zac Efron , following the point of view of his fiancée Elizabeth, who gives the face to Lily Collins. The most appreciated part of the film is the intense performance of Efron, who runs a big risk detaching himself from his previous characters. Ted’s charisma convinces those around him of his innocence almost to the end, but the surprise effect of the film is dampened by the fact that the public already knows the premises of history, or that Ted is guilty. The machinations of following the point of view of the girlfriend, to keep the spectators in the dark of the macabre crimes, do not fully realize the effect sought because during the process, Liz is relegated to the background. The reviewer Brian Tallerico believes that if the film had always followed Elizabeth’s point of view, it could have been an excellent film on the risks that can be run in being deceived by the people you think you love but,