I love a good independent movie as much as the next girl, but I generally only get to maybe two or three a year, and I live in a neighborhood with at least three indie theaters. But with Sundance coming up, some indie movies are about to get the most press they'll see all year. The lineup for the 2009 Sundance Film Festival is rolling out, and the festival, entering its 25th year, has announced the 64 films that will be entered into competition (of the 118 feature-length films that will premiere there). 3,661 films were submitted to the festival, so if you compare the indie fest to the world of major motion picture releases for a year, you've got to figure at least five of the indies will probably be really good. Being that the festival is Robert Redford's baby, I'll actually take the over on that one.
There are some interesting films this year, and some even more interesting synopses. Among my favorites:
Humpday, described as a story of "a straight male bonding gone a little too far," which is thankfully in the dramatic competition rather than the documentary one.
Dirt! The Movie, a documentary billed thusly: "The story of the relationship between humans and dirt, Dirt The Movie humorously details how humans are rapidly destroying the last natural resource on earth." Because the destruction of the Earth is hilarious.
And another documentary, Big River Man, whose synopsis reads, "An overweight, wine-swilling Slovenian world-record-holding endurance swimmer resolves to brave the mighty Amazon--in nothing but a Speedo(R)." There's a Michael Phelps joke somewhere in here, but I can't quite find it.
Some not-so-indie talent is taking part this year, as usual, like John Krasinski's Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, which he adapted from the novel by David Foster Wallace, directed, and stars in (along with Julianne Nicholson, Timothy Hutton, Dominic Cooper, Christopher Meloni and Rashida Jones). Then there's Big Fan, starring Patton Oswald and Michael Rapaport, about a man who is the New York Giant's biggest fan, and whose life is turned upside after an altercation with his favorite player. We can only hope it's Eli Manning (I'm looking at you, Plaxico Burress.) As well as the previously secret Michael Cera project, Paper Hearts.
You can check out the full listing from the four competition categories (U.S. Documentary, U.S. Drama, World Documentary, and World Drama) here.