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Here are the 66 titles in the competition categories of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, announced today.
Films in the Spotlight and Park City at Midnight sections, as well as the New Frontier films and installations, will be announced Thursday afternoon. The Premieres and Documentary Premieres slates, along with special events and major panel discussions, will be announced Monday afternoon.
All films produced in the United States, unless otherwise noted.
"Advantageous" • Director Jennifer Phang ("Half-Life," SFF '08) and actress Jacqueline Kim co-wrote this science-fiction story, with Kim portraying a spokeswoman for a biotech firm who considers a dangerous technology to give her daughter a better life.
"The Bronze" • Melissa Rauch (Bernadette on "The Big Bang Theory") and her husband Winston co-wrote this comedy, starring Mrs. Rauch as a former gymnast, washed-up and embittered a decade after winning the bronze medal who learns a young gymnast is threatening her local celebrity status. Directed by Bryan Buckley; Gary Cole, Thomas Middleditch, Sebastian Stan and Cecily Strong also star. Day One Film
" The D Train" • Jack Black stars as Dan, committee chairman of his 20th anniversary high-school reunion, desperate to get his class' most-popular guy (James Marsden) now an underemployed actor in Los Angeles to come home and see his old classmates. Directed and written by Jarrad Paul and Andrew Mogel; also starring Kathryn Hahn, Jeffrey Tambor and Mike White.
"The Diary of a Teenage Girl" • Actress-turned-filmmaker Marielle Heller wrote and directed this adaptation of Phoebe Gloekner's graphic novel, about a 15-year-old coming of age in '70s San Francisco, who has an affair with her mom's boyfriend (Alexander Skarsgard). Also starring Christopher Meloni and Kristen Wiig.
"Dope" • Rick Famuyiwa ("The Wood," "Brown Sugar") wrote and directed this comedy-drama, about a geeky high-school senior (Shameik Moore) from Inglewood, Calif., who gets invited to an underground party that leads to a wild night.
"I Smile Back" • Sarah Silverman stars as Laney Brooks, a suburban wife and mother who goes off her meds, replacing them with recreational drugs and the wrong men, until she tries a last-ditch attempt at redemption. Directed by Adam Salky ("Dare," SFF '09); written by Amy Koppelman and Paige Dylan.
"Me and Earl and the Dying Girl" • This comedy-drama centers on Greg (Thomas Mann), a high-school senior who stays as anonymous as possible while making movies with his buddy Earl (RJ Cyler), until his mom (Connie Britton) insists he befriend a leukemia-stricken classmate ("Ouija's" Olivia Cooke). Alfonso Gomez-Rejon directs Jesse Andrews' adaptation of his own novel.
"The Overnight" • In writer-director Patrick Brice's comedy, a family "playdate" takes some odd turns for a couple (Adam Scott, Taylor Schillilng) just arrived in L.A. who meet a mysterious family (led by Jason Schwartzman and Judith Godreche) in a park.
"People, Places, Things" • Writer-director James C. Strouse ("Grace Is Gone," SFF '07; "The Winning Season," SFF '09) returns with this comedy about a newly single graphic novelist (Jemaine Clement) raising twin daughters, teaching a college class and navigating the possibilities of new love.
"Results" • Andrw Bujalski ("Computer Chess," SFF '13) wrote and directed this comedy, about personal trainers (Guy Pearce and "How I Met Your Mother's" Cobie Smulders) faced with a wealthy new client (Kevin Corrigan). Also starring Giovanni Ribisi, Anthony Michael Hall and Brooklyn Decker.
"Songs My Brothers Taught Me" • Filmed and set on South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, this drama centers on the bond a Lakota teen who leaves the reservation and his younger sister. Beijing-born director-writer Chloé Zhao makes her feature debut.
"The Stanford Prison Experiment" • Based on actual events, this drama recounts the experiment launched by a Stanford professor (Billy Crudup), in which students played the roles of inmates and guards in a "prison" in the basement of the university's psychology department. Ezra Miller, Michael Angarano, Tye Sheridan, Johnny Simmons and Olivia Thirlby co-star. Directed by Kyle Patrick Alvarez ("C.O.G.," SFF '13), written by Tim Talbott.
"Stockholm, Pennsylvania" • Saoirse Ronan ("The Host") stars as a young woman returned home to her biological parents (Cynthia Nixon, David Warshofsky) after living with her abductor (Jason Isaacs) for 17 years. Written and directed by Nikole Beckwith.
"Unexpected" • A high-school science teacher (Cobie Smulders) forms an unlikely friendship with one of her most promising students (Gail Bean) when both learn they are pregnant. Director Kris Swanberg (wife of indie director Joe Swanberg) co-wrote this comedy-drama with Megan Mercier.
"The Witch" • Robert Eggers wrote and directed this period thriller, about a couple in New England in the 1630s, who fear a supernatural presence in the nearby woods that has taken their newborn son.
"Z for Zachariah" • A woman (Margot Robbie) believes she's the last human on Earth until she meets two survivors (Chris Pine, Chiwetel Ejiofor), and a love triangle develops. Craig Zobel ("Compliance," SFF '12; "Great Wall of Sound," SFF '07) directs Nissar Modi's adaptation of Robert C. O'Brien's 1974 post-apocalyptic novel.
"3 and 1/2 Minutes" • Director Marc Silver ("Who Is Dayani Crystal?," SFF '13) examines the death of Jordan Russell Davis, an unarmed 17-year-old shot to death by Michael David Dunn at a Jacksonville gas station in November 2012 and the issues of racism and justice the case raises.
"Being Evel" • Director Daniel Junge profiles the life and legacy of daredevil Robert "Evel" Knievel (1938-2007).
"Best of Enemies" • A behind-the-scenes look at the rivalry between liberal Gore Vidal and conservative William F. Buckley Jr., who argued about politics, God and sex in a series of TV debates in 1968. Directed by Oscar winner Morgan Neville ("Twenty Feet From Stardom," SFF '13) and Robert Gordon.
"Call Me Lucky" • Comedian and filmmaker Bobcat Goldthwait ("World's Greatest Dad," SFF '09; "Sleeping Dogs Lie," SFF '06) turns documentarian for this profile of comic, political satirist and peace activist Barry Crimmins.
"Cartel Land" • (U.S./Mexico) Vigilantes battle Mexican drug cartels in this character-driven documentary that is billed as a "classic Western set in the 21st century." Director Matthew Heineman also made "Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare" (SFF '12).
"City of Gold" • Director Laura Gabbert ("No Impact Man," SFF '09) follows Jonathan Gold, the Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic, through Los Angeles as he illuminates a growing cultural movement there.
"Finders Keepers" • Directors Bryan Carberry and Clay Tweel tell the strange-but-true story of what happens when amputee and recovering addict John Wood seeks to reclaim his mummified leg from Shannon Whisnant, a Southern entrepreneur who found it in a grill he bought at auction and, therefore, believes it's his property.
"Hot Girls Wanted" • An examination of the amateur porn industry, through the story of a 19-year-old woman looking for instant fame just one of a steady stream of just-adult teens who enter the business. Directed by Jill Bauer and Ronna Gradus.
"How to Dance in Ohio" • Teens and young adults on the autism spectrum in Columbus, Ohio, learn dancing and social skills ahead of a spring formal, in director Alexandra Shiva's documentary.
"Larry Kramer in Love and Anger" • Director Jean Carlomusto profiles playwright, author and activist Larry Kramer, who at 78 is still a vital and controversial voice in gay America.
"Meru" • Three elite mountain climbers risk all to challenge the never-before-conquered Shark's Fin on Mount Meru, the most-prized first ascent in Himalayan big wall climbing. Directed by Jimmy Chin and E. Chai Vasarhelyi.
"Racing Extinction" • Oscar-winning filmmaker and nature activist Louie Psihoyos ("The Cove," SFF '09) and his team infiltrate black markets and gather evidence of humans' effect on the environment in this examination of endangered species and mass extinction.
"(T)ERROR" • Billed as the first movie ever to document a covert FBI counterterrorism sting as it happens, this documentary follows a Black revolutionary turned informant as it examines the U.S. government's tactics and justifications in fighting terrorism. Directed by Lyric R. Cabral and David Felix Sutcliffe.
"Welcome to Leith" • Directors Michael Beach Nichols and Christopher K. Walker document the efforts of Craig Cobb, who sought to take over a North Dakota town into a haven for white supremacists.
"Western" • (U.S./Mexico) • A cowboy and a lawman team up against drug cartels to save the once-harmonious border towns of Eagle Pass, Texas, and Piedras Negras, Mexico. Directed by brothers Bill and Turner Ross.
"The Wolfpack" • Director Crystal Moselle chronicles the lives of the Angulo brothers, six teens sheltered from society in a Manhattan housing project, learning about the outside world from movies and dreaming of escape.
World Cinema Dramatic
"Chlorine" • (Italy) Jenny (Sara Serraiocco ) is a teen whose dreams of becoming a synchronized swimmer are imperiled when her mother dies, and she must leave her seaside town to tend to her ailing father and younger brother in a mountain village. Director Lamberto Sanfelice co-wrote with Elisa Amoruso.
"Chorus" • (Canada) Writer-director François Delisle ("The Meteor," SFF '13) shows a separated couple coming together 10 years after their missing son's body was found and issues of guilt, life and death, and reconciliation come to the fore.
"Glassland" • (Ireland) A Dublin cabbie (Jack Reynor) gets caught up in the criminal underworld while trying to save his mother (Toni Collette) from addiction. Written and directed by Gerard Barrett.
"Homesick" • (Norway) Charlotte (Ine Marie Wilmann) is 27; Henrik (Simon J. Berger) is 35. They are siblings, meeting for the first time, in this drama directed by Anne Sewitsky ("Happy, Happy," SFF '11), who co-wrote with Ragnhild Tronvoll.
"Ivy" • (Turkey) Writer-director Tolga Karaçelik's drama begins when a cargo ship's owner goes bankrupt, the crew en route to Egypt learns there is a lien on the ship, and six key crew members are forced to stay on board for days.
"Partisan" • (Australia) Alexander (Jeremy Chabriel) is a boy being raised by his father (Vincent Cassel) in a hidden paradise and being trained as an assassin until he starts thinking for himself. Director Ariel Kleiman co-wrote with Sarah Cyngler.
"Princess" • (Israel) In writer-director Tali Shalom Ezer's dark drama, a 12-year-old girl's role-playing games with her stepfather become dangerous but when she meets a mysterious boy her own age, her life shifts between reality and fantasy.
"The Second Mother" • (Brazil) A reunion between a São Paulo nanny (Regina Casé) and the college-bound daughter (Camila Márdila) she left to be raised by relatives 13 years ago upends the order of the nanny's employers, in this drama written and directed by Anna Muylaert.
"Slow West" • (New Zealand) A teen (Kodi Smit-McPhee) in late 19th century America travels across the frontier to find the woman he loves, accompanied by a mysterious traveler (Michael Fassbender) and pursued by an outlaw. Musician-turned-director John Maclean co-wrote with Michael Lesslie.
"Strangerland" • (Australia/Ireland) Nicole Kidman and Joseph Fiennes star as a couple whose relationship is pushed to the breaking point when their teen children disappear in the Australian desert. Kim Farrant directs a screenplay by Fiona Seres and Michael Kinirons.
"The Summer of Sangaile" • (Lithuania/France/The Netherlands) Writer-director Alanté Kavaïté's love story tells of Sangaile (Julija Steponaityte), a 17-year-old girl fascinated with stunt planes, who meets Auste (Aiste Diržiute), a local girl her own age, while at her parents' lakeside villa. Day One Film.
"Umrika" • (India) Prashant Nair wrote and directs this drama, in which a village boy ("Life of Pi's" Suraj Sharma) learns that his brother has gone missing and not gone to America as everyone believes so he writes letters on his behalf to keep his mother from heartbreak.
World Cinema Documentary
"The Amina Profile" • (Canada) Director Sophie Deraspe chronicles a love story between two women, a Canadian and a Syrian-American, that becomes an international socio-political thriller during the Arab revolution.
"Censored Voices" • (Israel/Germany) Mor Loushy's documentary reveals, for the first time, interviews recorded by author Amos Oz and editor Avraham Shapira of soldiers returning from the 1967 Six-Day War interviews the Israeli army censored and, mostly, kept from the public for decades.
"The Chinese Mayor" • (China) Director Hao Zhou follows Geng Yanbo, mayor of Datong, a city in China's coal-rich Shanxi province, as he dreams of creating a tourism destination by restoring an ancient city a plan that requires the relocation of 500,000 residents.
"Chuck Norris vs. Communism" • (U.K./Romania/Germany) Director Ilinca Calugareanu tells the story of how Western films helped tear down the Iron Curtain, thanks to a black-market VHS racketeer and a courageous female translator who brought Chuck Norris and other stars to the masses.
"Dark Horse" • (U.K.) Friends in a Welsh workingman's club decide to breed a thoroughbred racehorse, challenging the elite of the "sport of kings," in this inspirational documentary by director Louise Osmond.
"Dreamcatcher" • (U.K.) Director Kim Longinotto ("Rough Aunties," SFF '09) goes deep inside the world of prostitution, as she profiles Brenda Myers-Powell, a former teen prostitute who now advocates for change for hundreds of women and girls seeking an escape from the sex trade.
"How to Change the World" • (U.K./Canada) With never-before-seen archival footage, director Jerry Rothwell chronicles how a group of friends bent on saving the environment created the international organization Greenpeace. Day One Film.
"Listen to Me Marlon" • (U.K.) Billed as "the definitive Marlon Brando cinema documentary," this movie directed by Stevan Riley, who co-wrote with Peter Ettedgui uses audio from Brando's personal archives to chart the actor's stellar career and his extraordinary private life in his own voice.
"Pervert Park" • (Sweden/Denmark) Husband-and-wife filmmakers Frida and Lasse Barkfors take their cameras into a Florida trailer park populated by sex offenders, trying to return to society and break the cycle of sex crimes.
"The Russian Woodpecker" • (U.K.) As the Soviet Union verges on collapse and revolution, a Ukrainian survivor of the Chernobyl nuclear accident discovers a deadly secret, in director Chad Garcia's documentary.
"Sembene!" • (U.S./Senegal) A profile of Ousmane Sembene, who went from being a dockworker and fifth-grade dropout to becoming "the father of African cinema," giving Africans a voice unlike any other. Directed by Samba Gadjigo and Jason Silverman.
"The Visit" • (Denmark/Austria/Ireland/Finland/Norway) There's no other way to describe this one than what Sundance's press office writes about it: " 'This film documents an event that has never taken place…' With unprecedented access to the United Nations' Office for Outer Space Affairs, leading space scientists and space agencies, 'The Visit' explores humans' first encounter with alien intelligent life and thereby humanity itself. 'Our scenario begins with the arrival. Your arrival.' " Directed by Michael Madsen (no, not the guy from "Reservoir Dogs").
"Bob and the Trees" • Bob (Bob Tarasuk), 50, is a logger in rural Massachusetts struggling to get by. When his beloved cow is injured and a job goes badly, Bob starts listening to his ever-darkening instincts. Director Diego Ongaro co-wrote with Courtney Maum and Sasha Statman-Weil.
"Christmas, Again" • Writer-director Charles Poekel tells a modern-day holiday story, about a heartbroken Christmas tree salesman (Kentucker Audley) who is saved from himself by a mystery woman and some colorful customers.
"Cronies" • Writer-director Michael Larnell's comedy-drama follows Louis (George Sample III), a 22-year-old spending the day with his new friend Andrew (Brian Kowalski) rankling Louis' childhood friend Jack (Zurich Buckner), who decides to tag along.
"Entertainment" • Director Rick Alverson and co-writers Gregg Turkington and Tim Heidecker the team from "The Comedy" (SFF '12) are back in this story of a broken-down comedian (played by Turkington) playing a string of shows in the Mojave Desert en route to meeting his estranged daughter. The cast includes John C. Reilly, Tye Sheridan ("Mud"), Michael Cera, Amy Seimetz ("Upstream Color") and Lotte Verbeek.
"H." • (U.S./Argentina) In a modern spin on a Greek tragedy, two women named Helen (Robin Bartlett and Rebecca Dayan) struggle to keep their lives from spinning out of control after a meteor supposedly explodes over their city of Troy, N.Y. Directed and written by Rania Attieh and Daniel Garcia.
"James White" • Christopher Abbott ("Girls") plays the title role in writer-director Josh Mond's coming-of-age story, a young New Yorker struggling to take control over his reckless behavior. Cynthia Nixon and Scott "Kid Cudi" Mescudi co-star.
"Nasty Baby" • In this drama, Polly (Kristen Wiig) agrees to help a gay couple played by Tunde Adebimpe (from the band TV on the Radio) and the movie's writer-director, Sebastian Silva ("Crystal Fairy," SFF '13; "Magic Magic," SFF '13; "The Maid," SFF '09) have a baby. The plan brings harassment from a neighbor, The Bishop (Reg E. Cathey), that grows more aggressive.
"The Strongest Man" • A Cuban man (Robert Lorie), who despite his many anxieties fancies himself the world's strongest man, searches Miami to recover his stolen bicycle, in this comedy drama by director-writer Kenny Riches.
"Take Me to the River" • A California teen (Logan Miller) plans to come out to his family at a Nebraska reunion, but an incident puts him in the middle of a long-buried family secret. Writer-director Matt Sobel's debut also stars Robin Weigert, Josh Hamilton and Richard Schiff.
"Tangerine" • When Sin-Dee (Kitana Kiki Rodriguez), a prostitute, learns her boyfriend is cheating on her, she takes her best friend Alexandra (Mya Taylor), on a wild Christmas Eve ride through Los Angeles subcultures. Director Sean Baker co-wrote with Chris Bergoch.
Sean P. Means