Well....I meant to keep a blog going about my 9th Sundance (see first day's blogs)...but I got busier than I thought. Even though I had more time off this year as one of the Sundance press/industry venue managers at the Holiday Village #1 (a lucky recipient of scheduling beyond my control), my socializing and networking had me filling many of my hours with connecting with people more than watching films.
As a moviegoer in NY who can see a fair amount of these films later in the year, and often as a screener for 2 well known NY film festivals...I've looked back at past Sundances and said to myself this year: why knock yourself out with getting up early, or staying up late, to see a film that will be far easier to see later in the year...sometimes within months? The novelty of being one of the first people to see a film at Sundance has long since worn off, and since I'm not paid to review or scout movies...at least not yet...I caught up on the trades and doing emails more this year. (And showing around a wide-eyed newbie literary manager...her energy was infectious, so this year the movies had to suffer.)
But having said that: was my decision to see less films because of a certain....been there done that feeling? More than one person, journalist and non-journalist alike, seemed to feel that there was a little less excitement with films this year. Wasn't "GOD GREW TIRED OF US" very much like "LOST BOYS OF SUDAN"? Wasn't "SHERRYBABY" very similar to 'DOWN TO THE BONE"? Wasn't 'WORDPLAY" similar to "SPELLBOUND" and that Scrabble movie? And "TRIALS OF DARYL HUNT" similar to "AFTER INNONCENCE"? Maybe that's the curse of being at a lot of Sundances. Many films seem cut from the same cloth of previous films. (One of the reasons I went to see "THE SCIENCE OF SLEEP"...not too many films like that one.) I'm not saying that any of these films aren't worth seeing. In fact, I heard audiences were very high on more than one of them. But for this veteran Sundancer who was intent on making job connections (and yeah...hoping to make a booty connection at one point....I'll be honest), this was more of a snowy Sundance for me than a celluloid one.
But I don't want to sound like I'm complaining. It's always a great 2 weeks to be there. For those who haven't been there yet, I highly recommend it. And stay tuned...there could be some video news from me regarding film festivals at one point this year. (Not to mention my first short film appearing later this year. I shoot the main scenes for it a week from now.)