Monday, February 20, 2012

Sundance 2012 Wrap Up - Day Two

Unfortunately, it kicks off with more of the same. The End of Love is ANOTHER movie with no script! This time, writer/star/director Mark Webber fixes the camera on his relationship with his toddler son, Isaac. Mark is a single father who is trying to land acting jobs in LA after his wife dies. Isaac is played by his real-life son, so that makes it more interesting and the kid is cute, which helps. It just so obviously seemed like it was ambling to somewhere, but never getting anywhere revelatory. Again with the long shots of nothingness! I appreciated the difficulties this guy has in raising a child by himself without a steady income and I empathized when he was dealing with roommates and girls and love etc. But, after three movies that mistake vast nothingness for deep, cerebral meaning, I was over it. That being said, Farrah and our friends Joe and Leslie that saw it with us, liked it a lot more than I did. SCORE = 4

This movie marked the one and only time I saw a star not affiliated with the movie we were watching. In this case it was Hurt Locker star Anthony Mackie who sat a couple rows behind me. I overheard bits of his conversations and he sounded like a totally decent guy, which is always nice.

Finally things pick back up with the best movie of the weekend. Bones Brigade is a documentary about the Bones Brigade, which were the first stars of skateboarding in the late 70s/early 80s. The most famous member of the brigade is Tony Hawk, who’s the most recognizable face in skateboarding, but he’s just one of about 7 guys who made up the group and watching them tell their story mixed with the usual frenetically artistic style of filmmaker Stacy Peralta (who also gave these guys their start back in the day when he ran Powell Peralta skate gear) made for the perfect jolt of life (as is often the case with a Peralta film).

Everyone but Tony Hawk were at the Q&A afterwards (he had another commitment, he wasn’t ditching or anything) and for some fanboys in the audience it was like seeing Jesus. It made me wish I had been more of a boarder back in the day so that I could have fully appreciated having these guys in front of me. The adoration from some of the guys in the audience (“you guys formed my whole life, you taught me how to talk”) was emotional. I actually got choked up.

They all seemed like really decent guys and seeing how the fame they enjoyed as teenagers has impacted the rest of their lives was fascinating. Loved every minute of it. SCORE = 9

From here we barely make it to the last film of the day, Smashed. I enjoyed it, but of all the movies we saw it’s the last one that comes to mind when I recollect the trip. Mary Elizabeth Winstead (so hot in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) plays a young, married alcoholic who decides to break away from her toxic but comfortable life with her enabling husband (Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul). Her road to recovery, which includes some funny interaction with her sponsor played by Nick Offerman (Parks and Rec), is good, but the movie brings nothing new to this type of genre. You’ve seen the cycle before. They hit bottom, they get help, they start to get sober, they trip up, they tentatively try to come back and it all ends in a subtly ambiguous way so that you’re hoping for the best, but prepared for the worst. It was pretty good and it’s only problem was being so normal. SCORE = 6

1 comment:

Brooke & Jake said...

Bones Brigade was my favorite out of the 5 movies we saw. There were tons of uber fans during the Q/A at our screening too. It got kind of old but it must be super fulfilling for those guys. They were signing posters for hours before and after the screening.