kate micucci

… in which our intrepid California-bred Senior Film Reviewer defies an epic winter storm and a fierce chest cold to bring you highlights from this year’s famous Park City fest.

The 2017 Sundance Film Festival ended last Saturday evening after ten days of showcasing over 200 films from around the globe; you can see all the winners here.

For the third year in a row, Spinning Platters was on the (snow-covered) ground trying to take in as many movies as our limited time and budget would allow. And so we bring you the first of our posts spotlighting the 17 films we managed to squeeze in to just over five days.

Many of these may receive distribution deals (if they haven’t already), so you can know what to watch for in the coming year with these handy capsule reviews, which use our patented Sundance Viewing Priority Level (VPL) Guide:

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tommy lau2

Bring the Rock ALWAYS brings the fun(ny). (Photo thanks to Tommy Lau.)

Sketchfest is always fun. It’s even better, though, when I get to see Greg Behrendt, and most of all when it’s for Bring the Rock, as was the case for the final weekend of Sketchfest 2016 at Swedish American Hall. It’s even sweeter than usual, though, because it marks my fifth anniversary with Spinning Platters: I first met editor-in-chief Gordon Elgart at a similar event in 2011. It was called Maximum Volume, but the premise was the same, and any chance I have to be there when an event like this takes place, I’m not gonna miss it. [read the whole post]

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IMG_2533

Garfunkel & Oates have played Sketchfest twice before. In 2011, they were part of Chris Hardwick’s (No Relation) Music Night as one of several acts performing. In 2012, they opened for the great Reggie Watts at Mezzanine. Tonight, however, we got to experience them play their own headlining set. It meant that every single person in the crowd was their just for G & O. And, considering this show sold out several weeks in advance, it only proved that the good folks of San Francisco were quite thirsty to see these wonderful woman play a full set.

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Singin' and Dancin' (All Photos by Marie Carney)

Some of the most talented people on earth hail from right here in the San Francisco Bay Area. In fact, we have so many uber-talented musicians, writers, comics, speakers, artists, chefs, and so on, that it’s easy to take them for granted. Reggie Watts is one of those performers. He seems to be performing all the time, and everyone in the bay area seems to swoon over him. Yet, I have yet to see him. It could be due to the fact that every show sells out, no matter what the venue. Which is also how Sketchfest was able to book him four nights in a row, also giving him the ability to indulge in whatever he pleases.

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