Surviving Sundance 2012: Day Six Recap


I saw five movies yesterday and I’m seeing five movies today. When will this madness end?

Thankfully, I saw two of the best films of my life: The Surrogate and 2 Days in New York (which will be reviewed later in the week). Read about them and other Sundance films below.


For a Good Time, Call

Not since Human Centipede 2 has a movie left me has violently shaken and upset by the end. The difference is that HC2 achieved this through it’s nihilistic, brutal vision, while For a Good Time brings this out of me through it’s lifeless, dull plot. This is a comedy that mistakes humor for saying “dick”, “pussy”, and “fuck” repeatedly. This is a comedy with a plot that can be summed up in a sentence — a very boring sentence that would put me to sleep faster than a trough of NyQuil. I looked into For a Good Time and all I saw was a void of comedy cliches that left me with an emptiness I never thought possible. In short: It really, really sucks. — 24, Terrible

Safety Not Guaranteed
Director: Colin Trevorrow

As Bill and Ted proved long ago, time travel and comedy go hand-in-hand. Then Hot Tub Time Machine proved that theory wrong. Somewhere between the two lies Safety Not Guaranteed, though it centers on a possible crazy person’s belief in time travel rather than the act itself. Parks and Recreations‘ Aubrey Plaza, Mark Duplass, and Jake M. Johnson round-out a strong cast of actors that can deliver humor without sacrificing the darker themes of the film. It may be the first good movie based on an internet meme. — 74, Good

The Surrogate
Director: Ben Lewin

Unlike similar films about a teaching helping an impaired student, The Surrogate never lays on the cheese or drama. It’s clear that Brien is suffering over his sexual anxiety and heartbreak, but it’s all in Hawkes’ subtle, Oscar-worthy performance. He speaks beautiful words with a voice that sounds like Bukowski without the edge — the sound lulls me to sleep, while the intricate wordplay keeps me wide awake. I’ve rarely seen a script and actor form such a tight bond to deliver a performance as powerful as this one. — 85, Exceptional [Read the full review]