Like its big cousin Sundance, the Slamdance Film Festival will return to Park City in 2022, after going live for a year due to COVID-19.
Slamdance announced on Wednesday the 28 feature films that will screen in its 28th annual edition, which returns to the Treasure Mountain Inn in Park City from January 20-23. The festival will also be screened virtually from January 20 to 30, coinciding with the festival’s Sundance Film Course. (Sundance is expected to announce its festival films on Thursday.)
Festival president and co-founder Peter Baxter said in a statement that the films selected “embody the true DIY spirit of guerrilla cinema and push the boundaries of what is possible in storytelling.”
The programmers sifted through 1,579 feature film entries. Festival rules require that entries for the contest be made by a first-time director and have a budget of less than $ 1 million. Films also must not have obtained a distributor in the United States at this time.
Thirteen of the 28 films screened will be world premieres; six will make their debuts in North America and four will be premieres in the United States. Thirteen films were shot in the United States; the others come from Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Iran, Canada, China, South Korea, Italy, Spain, Poland, United Kingdom, Macedonia North and Cyprus.
The films fill the festival’s narrative and documentary competitions, as well as the Breakout program for more established filmmakers and the Unstoppable program to feature filmmakers with disabilities.
The festival also selected 79 short films, in several categories, as well as an Episodes category to highlight episodic narratives intended for broadcast.
Here are the synopses of the 28 feature films selected for the 2022 Slamdance Film Festival. For more information on the shorts and other programs, and to purchase tickets, visit slamdance.com. (All titles are made in the USA unless otherwise noted.)
“Real people” • Kit Zauhar, who wrote and directed, plays Riley, who in his final week of college works to gain the affection of a boy (Scott Albrecht) from his hometown – Philadelphia – and ends up confronting his anxieties about the future, her and her family. love life. Also starring Audrey Kan, Vivian Zauhar, Henry Fulton Winship, Isabelle Barbier and Fraser Jones.
“Good afternoon Sweetdream ” (South Korea) • In the story of screenwriter and director Bang Seung Hyeon, a woman (Son Ye Won) hangs out with her friends after her father dies, but her mind is elsewhere. Bang is also co-starring, along with Kim Woo Kyeom, Sung San Hee and Yang Min Ju.
“Hannah Ha Ha “• A woman (Hannah Lee Thompson) living with her father faces the return of her older brother, who imposes his life choices at home. Written and directed by Jordan Tetewsky and Joshua Pikovsky, the film also stars Roger Mancusi, Avram Tetewsky, Charlie Robinson, Jake Stern, Petr Favazza, Peter Cole and Chuck Fazzio.
“Honeycomb” (Canada) • Director Avalon Fast and co-writer Emmett Roiko tell the story described by the programmers at Slamdance as follows: “Five girls are wandering away from society in search of something more special. … You can find them if you follow the sound. With Rowan Wales, Sophie Bawks-Smith, Jillian Frank, Destini Stewart, Mari Geraghty, Jaris Wales, Henri Gillespi, Max Graham.
“Love Tasting ” (Poland) • Four teenage friends from a Polish town are waiting by the pool for the graduation party, and next week nothing will be the same. Written and directed by Dawid Nickel, the film stars Sandra Drzymalska, Mikołaj Matczak, Michał Sitnicki, Nel Kaczmarek, Kuba Wróblewski and Agnieszka Żulewska.
“Snow White dies at the end ” (North Macedonia / Cyprus) Six stubborn people stay true to their own values in a society that does things differently from them, in a film by writer-director Kristijan Risteski. With Natasha Petrovic, Verica Nedeska, Sashko Kocev, Deniz Abdula, Ivica Dimitrijevic, David Janakiev and Valentin Kostadinovski.
“Civilian deaths ”• Clay Tatum stars as a struggling photographer who plans to relax at home while his wife is out of town – until a desperate old friend (Whitmer Thomas) shows up. Tatum directed and co-wrote with Thomas. Also starring Whitney Weir, Budd Diaz and Robert Longstreet.
“Therapy dogs “ (Canada) • Best Friends (Justin Morrice and Ethan Eng, who wrote the screenplay) decided to create the ultimate senior video for the Class of 2019. Eng directed; the film also stars Kevin Tseng, Kyle Peacock, Mitchell Cidade, Sebastian Neme, Andrew Michalko and Jayden Frost.
“Ultrainocencia ” (Spain) • David Climent and Pablo Molinero play the role of test subjects in an experiment, conducted by a mysterious religious organization, to answer a big question: Does God exist? Director Manuel Arija wrote the screenplay with Climent and Molinero; Sergi Lopez (“Pan’s Labyrinth”) is also playing.
“Screaming fire in an empty theater ” • In writer-director Justin Zimmerman’s film, a young woman (Isadora Leiva) moves to New York and finds herself embroiled in the heated relationship of her roommates. Also starring Kelly Cooper, Michael Patrick Nicholson, Ryan Martin Brown, Colin Burgess and Krista Jensen.
“Dog love “ (Iran) • Writer-director Mahmoud Ghaffari follows Aslan, who is in love with Yassi, and together they run an underground dog shelter in Iran.
“Ferroequinology” (UK / US) • A common interest in locomotion propels two artists, McNair Evans and Andrew Cross, on a slow journey across America in director Alex Nevill’s film.
“Do not forget me” • A family is fighting to enroll their son with Down’s syndrome in the country’s most segregated school system, in this documentary from director Olivier Bernier.
“Fury” (Poland) • Aleksandra Rola prepares for the MMA Fighting World Championships in Las Vegas, facing a complicated backstory, in the documentary by director Krzysztof Kasior.
“Imperfect “• Directors Brian Malone and Regan Linton recount a production of the musical “Chicago” in which the actors – including Linton – are disabled.
“New Jack ”• After an extreme and dangerous career as a professional wrestler, Jerome Young – aka “New Jack” – approaches life out of the spotlight. Directed by Danny Lee and Noah Lee.
“Sylvie from the State of the Sun ”• Filmmaker Sasha Levinson shares her life as a single mother with sophomore Sylvie as they navigate life together in the COVID-19 era. Levinson co-wrote the film with Jonathan Sanford.
“Underdog “ • Vermont dairy farmer Doug Butler risks losing his home to pursue his dream of dog sledding in Alaska. Directed by Tommy Hyde.
“I’ll be right back” (Germany) • The sudden appearance of a mysterious stranger turns the strange daily life of four people living in an abandoned resort in the woods upside down. Director Frauke Havemann co-wrote with Peter Stamer and Mattias Wittekindt. With Iris Boss, Inga Dietrich, Effi Rabsilber, Jack Rath and Poul Storm.
“Facing the monsters “ (Australia) • Bentley Dean wrote and directed this documentary, which portrays surfer Kerby Brown, whose connection to the ocean is as deep as his love for his family.
“Kill the eunuch KHAN “ (Iran) • Creepy synopsis: “A serial killer uses his victims to kill more. Written and directed by Abed Abest, the film stars Ebarhim Azizi, Vahid Rad, Misagh Zare and Iman Basim.
“Paris is in Harlem »• As a controversial “no dance” law is about to be repealed in New York City, a shooting at a Harlem jazz bar changes the lives of several strangers. Christina Kallas wrote and directed the film, which stars Vandit Bhatt, Leon Addison Brown, Ellie Foumbi, Laura Pruden, Lauren Sowa, Souleymane Sy Savane, Steve Vause and Chris Veteri.
“Retrograde” (Canada) • A neurotic young woman (Molly Reisman) develops an obsession with a minor traffic violation in the film by writer-director Adrian Murray. Also starring Sofia Banzhaf, Bessie Cheng, Meelad Moaphi, Dean Tardioli and Erik Anderson.
“We are living beings” (US / China / Italy) • Two immigrants go on a journey to uncover the truth about a shared UFO abduction. Director Antonio Tibaldi co-wrote with Alex Lora. The film stars Jorge Antonio Guerrero, Xingchen Lyu, Zao Wang, O-Lan Jones, Paul Cooper, Manuel René Del Carmen Ordaz, Alfonso Rey and Allison Tibaldi.
“Iron family” • A young woman has a vision and inspires her family to perform an original play for their community in this documentary directed by Patrick Longstreth.
“Poppy” (New Zealand) • A young woman (Libby Hunsdale) with Down’s syndrome pursues her dream of becoming an apprentice car mechanic, using secret strategies to achieve her ambition, in this film written and directed by Linda Niccol. Also with Ari Boyland, Seb Hunter and Kali Kopae.
“Straighten up and fly right “ • Kristen Abate, who co-wrote and co-directed with Steven Tanenbaum (who co-stars), stars here: a physically disabled New Yorker who walks dogs for money but dreams of being writer – and who must decide, as his life comes undone, whether to crumble or straighten out. Also starring AJ Cedeno, Mehret Marsh, Modesto Flako Jimenez, Marianna McClellan, Kerrryn Feehan and Lawrence Jansen.
” The cut ” • Writer-director Mark Pellington (“Arlington Road”, “The Mothman Prophecies”) describes this new film as “’Pina’ meets ‘Saw’… a dance film for the body. It stars Nina McNeely and Courtney Scarr.