Category: Independent Film

+

Last Night in Rozzie: Independent hit a solid double

One of Hill Country Film Festival’s greatest success stories makes its theatrical debut this weekend. Last Night in Rozzie, directed by Sean Gannet from a screenplay by Ryan McDonough, won both the Cinema Dulce (Best of Fest) and Best Feature Film award at the 12th annual festival this summer and will open in limited release on the big screen as well as premium video on … Read More Last Night in Rozzie: Independent hit a solid double

+

No Sudden Move: A crime thriller for Steven

Steven Soderbergh makes movies with only one audience in mind: Steven Soderbergh. The filmmaker behind classics like Erin Brockovich, the Ocean’s Eleven trilogy and Traffic is well into a point in his career where he has a clear vision for what he wants to do, can do it quickly and loves to experiment with the visual form as his own personal art project.  It’s … Read More No Sudden Move: A crime thriller for Steven

+

12 Mighty Orphans: Feel-good fumble

Inspirational sports films have practically become a tradition on par with events like the World Series, Super Bowl or Kentucky Derby. Without fail, it’s expected – almost demanded – that there will be one every year. Texas director Ty Roberts has brought audiences an emotional drama based on a true story from his home state, putting viewers on the sidelines with an underdog football … Read More 12 Mighty Orphans: Feel-good fumble

+

All These Sons: Tribeca At Home review

Gun violence is senseless. Nowhere in the United States is it more prevalent than Chicago, where more people are shot and killed than in New York City and Los Angeles combined. For filmmakers Joshua Altman and Bing Liu’s latest documentary All These Sons, approaching the sensitive subject meant dealing with the trauma and emotional scars that linger long after bullet wounds have healed. Their … Read More All These Sons: Tribeca At Home review

+

Minari: Struggling toward the American dream

There’s something simple, yet elegant about director Lee Isaac Chung’s latest feature, a semi-autobiographical tale base on his childhood growing up in America’s heartland. The story is ordinary – and the cinema understated in large part – but there’s an ethereal quality to his film that opens with a young boy running in an empty field of green and never truly stops flowing in … Read More Minari: Struggling toward the American dream

+

Nomadland: Perspectives from the road

Few casual moviegoers will find Chloé Zhao’s latest directorial effort to be their absolute favorite film of the year, but even fewer can reasonably argue that it may be among the very best. A haunting yet powerful portrait of a hidden life across the heartland, Nomadland finds some of the best of America wandering across the country in search of boundless freedom and of … Read More Nomadland: Perspectives from the road

+

Land: Beautiful emptiness out there

Grief and tragedy have long been an overarching theme of independent dramas, especially those that find their way across major film festivals in search of studio buyers. But they’re also a fantastic way for first-time directors to plant their flag in the sand as an emerging filmmaker or actors to announce their arrival as a behind-the-scenes star. Golden Globe-winning actress Robin Wright – who … Read More Land: Beautiful emptiness out there

+

Promising Young Woman: The sweetest revenge

Once a year, a film comes along that cuts so deeply against the grain that its ingenuity and craftsmanship push movies forward for years to come. Amidst the backdrop of pandemic-led movie shortages, the stark contrast between the relatively mundane films of 2020 and writer/director Emerald Fennell’s debut feature, an instant hit when it debuted at last year’s Sundance Film Festival on its way … Read More Promising Young Woman: The sweetest revenge

Boys State: For the people, by the people

Over 1,200 high school boys gather annually in Austin to participate in a seven-day democratic experiment designed to test their mettle. A mock government program put on nationwide by the American Legion, Boys State challenges these young men to form their own political parties, hold primaries and eventually a statewide race for a variety of offices culminating in a gubernatorial election. Each iteration of … Read More Boys State: For the people, by the people

Tread: Mayhem in a small town

Granby, Colorado feels like the sort of small town you’d find in every state across America. Industrious, hardworking, the kind of place where neighbors know all the scuttlebutt within a few hours and there’s hardly a stranger because everyone is on a first name basis. The fact that the events depicted in director Paul Solet’s gripping documentary “Tread” could plausibly happen in any small … Read More Tread: Mayhem in a small town

Radioactive: Experimentation in biopic film

It’s unclear exactly why an avant-garde, cinematic biopic of the adult life of famed scientist Marie Curie was needed, but such is the world of film in 2020. Opting not for the sidesplitting, yet emotional dramedy that powered 2016’s “Hidden Figures,” the demure albeit strange film “Radioactive” from director Marjane Satrapi presents Curie in a traditional light before mixing her journey to multiple Nobel … Read More Radioactive: Experimentation in biopic film

Palm Springs: Hot film at the right time

It’s often said that a movie can feel of the moment, that it came out at exactly the right place and time for audiences to identify with and feel heard. “Palm Springs,” a small romantic comedy that debuted at this year’s Sundance Film Festival when things were normal, has a very “of the moment” vibe that no one – not even first-time director Max … Read More Palm Springs: Hot film at the right time