Sundance_Film_Festival

Park City, Oncology
Utah raised its chic factor during this year’s annual Sundance Film Festival. From esteemed personalities like Jessica Alba to up and coming artists like actor Dylan O’Brien, buy the cinema set arrived in luxe winter wear to celebrate this year’s leading global film luminaries.

Après-ski style took over the streets with Kate Hudson dressed in ripped denim and a statement-making fur hat. Keira Knightley kept cozy and feminine in a belted grey Valentino sweater overlace skirt, approved
while Ann Hathaway turned heads in both an emerald pant suit one day and ripped denim another.

Diane Kruger opted for understated elegance in a Ports 1961 camel coat over belted tweed, and her boyfriend Joshua Jackson meshed well in a tan and plaid ensemble.

 

Like fashion, film exists in constant flux. Robert Redford launched global, nonprofit Sundance Institute in 1981 and remains appreciative of how the film community has developed over the past three decades.

“Change is inevitable,” Redford was quoted by Sundance Institute. “You either resist it—we know who those people are—or you go with it. We want to ride with that wave.”

Lauded films this year included Ben Lewin’s The Surrogate starring Helen Hunt and John Hawkes. One of the largest acquisition titles of Sundance 2012, the drama does not recount the intricate process of alternative reproduction, rather the story of a man living with polio who spends most of his life living in an iron lung and eventually finds a “sexual surrogate” (Helen Hunt), who helps him explore his emotional self and develop the confidence to relate better with women.

Kirsten Dunst made a memorable mark with her intense role in Bachelorette despite some reviews dubbing it a hit and miss. While the masses are expected to flock to see this wedding-themed story, a spin off of 2011’s Bridesmaids, some critics were hoping for more distinctiveness and a deeper ending. Still most reviewers agree that the film will rival The Hangover.

Chris Rock lent solid talent to the festival with his appearance in 2 Days in New York directed by Julie Delpy. A follow-up to her 2007 feature 2 Days in Paris, the story follows a Manhattan couple navigating life and family drama together with children from prior relationships.

Sundance Film Festival 2014 U.S. Grand Jury Prize (Dramatic): "Whiplash" directed by Damien Chazelle (photo credit: Stephen Speckman)

Sundance Film Festival 2014 U.S. Grand Jury Prize (Dramatic): “Whiplash” directed by Damien Chazelle (photo credit: Stephen Speckman)

After all the premiers, shorts viewings and Free Fail panel sessions, an awards ceremony recognized this year’s diverse leaders. The most distinguished film was Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash, named for both Grand Jury and Audience prizes. Brainchild of a short film featured at last year’s festival, the story is about the making of a struggling jazz drummer’s career. Sony Pictures quickly picked up the film after its opening night debut.

"Whiplash" (photo credit: Daniel McFadden)

“Whiplash” (photo credit: Daniel McFadden)

Grand Jury Prizes ranked and recognized films in both the dramatic and documentary competitions as the best among independent films this year. Audience Awards are determined by ballots that festival attendee cast at theaters after screenings. Audience categories include Dramatic, Documentary, World Cinema Dramatic and World Cinema Documentary categories.

Another notable was the drama Fishing Without Nets (chosen for Directing Award U.S. Dramatic) directed by Cutter Hodierne and told from the prospective of pirates in Somalia. Editing Award U.S. Documentary went to Watchers of the Sky, a historical genocide film by Edet Belzberg.

All attendees left the event with a new set of wheels from Continental Tires. Not that this year’s applauded crowd needs help making a fashionable return.

View a complete list of award winners at www.sundance.org.

 

-Andrea Zarczynski