Tye Sheridan

Reality is a bummer, and so is this movie  

Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan) enters the Oasis via his virtual reality gear. 

Let me start this review with a caveat, since I know there are a lot of die hard fans out there of Ernest Cline’s 2011 sci-fi book Ready Player One, on which director Steven Spielberg’s new movie is based: I have not read the book. So if you’re looking for a detailed synopsis of how the movie is different from the book, you may as well click off Spinning Platters right now and search for a different review. That said, however, I did attend the screening with a friend who had read the book, and he let me know that much of the film’s plot differs dramatically from Cline’s story; he also opined that he thought a lot of the book’s charm was lost on screen. But that’s where I come in: to discuss a.) what, exactly, is on screen; and b.) to tell you if it’s worth your time and money. And the short answers are: a.) not much of interest, and b.) no.
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… 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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Sundance 2015 Spotlights: Five Feature Films

Sundance

Braving the chill, the dry air, and the self-importance of the L.A. film industry folks who don’t turn off their cell phones during screenings, Senior Film Reviewer Carrie Kahn brings you these first spotlights (more to follow) from the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, UT, which closes this Sunday, February 1st.

From the good, the mediocre, to the downright horrific, some of these films may receive distribution deals and be widely released in the coming year. Lucky for you, we here at Spinning Platters are ready and willing to let you know which films to see and which to miss. We’ll start with five feature films, and our handy Viewing Priority Level (VPL) Guide will steer you in the right direction. [read the whole post]

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Spinning Platters film critics Carrie Kahn and Chad Liffmann present their Top 10 Films of 2013.  Here’s Carrie’s list, presented in alphabetical order.

1.) All is Lost
Robert Refdord struggles against the elements in All is Lost.

Robert Redford struggles against the elements in All is Lost.

That a film with just a single actor and virtually no dialog can be absolutely riveting is a testament both to Robert Redford’s brilliant acting and to writer/director J.C. Chandor’s exceptional skill at his craft. Redford says more with his rugged face and worried eyes than most actors do with a wordy, five-star script. Not since Jaws and The Perfect Storm has a film so totally absorbed us in a man-against-sea survival story. And Chandor’s ambiguous ending lends itself to hours of debate and discussion; everyone who has seen this film has a strong opinion, and that a near-silent film can generate such passion makes it special and noteworthy. [read the whole post]

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