Stanley Nelson

Our coverage of the 2017 Sundance Film Festival continues with this look at five documentaries that premiered at the Fest a few weeks ago.

Many of these may receive distribution or television deals (if they haven’t already; see our notes below), 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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Sundance 2015 Spotlights: Six Documentary Films

Spinning Platters completes its coverage of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival with this third and final Spotlights post, focusing on six documentaries that screened at the Park City fest. Keep your eye out for many of these as they are widely released this coming year, and use our handy Sundance Viewing Priority Level (VPL) Guide to help you decide if they are worth your time:

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Spinning Platters brings you more spotlights from the 57th San Francisco International Film Festival (SFIFF), which continues through this Thursday, May 8th. Program notes and tickets available here.  There is still plenty of time to catch some screenings, and you can also see many of the films as they open widely throughout the year.

Boyhood
(USA 2014, 162 min)

Life awaits young Mason (Ellar Coltrane) in Boyhood.

Life awaits young Mason (Ellar Coltrane) in Boyhood.

Stunning, remarkable, and amazing don’t begin to do justice to Richard Linklater’s new movie. Filmed over the course of 12 years using all the same actors, the picture follows young Mason (a captivating Ellar Coltrane) from the ages of six to 18; in one scene he’s maybe 8, and maybe 30 minutes later, he’s 12, in seamless transitions that will leave you astounded. The film could have just as easily been called Childhood or Parenthood (Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette are equally terrific as Mason’s parents), as it’s about nothing less than the ephemeral nature of time and the meaning of life itself. Is life just a series of events – marriages, divorces, birthdays, graduations? What can we count on in life besides change? Breathtakingly original and achingly poignant, Boyhood is sure to be on many critics’ top ten list at year end; I know it will be on mine.

Screenings:

  • Opens July 18th at the Landmark Embarcadero Cinema

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