The Films of Sundance 2011

Get an early look at the films poised to make the biggest splashes at this year's Sundance Film Festival.

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Get an early look at the films poised to make the biggest splashes at this year's Sundance Film Festival.
My Idiot Brother| Paul Rudd stars as an aimless goofball who gets passed around by his sisters after his well-intentioned but disastrous schemes goes awry. Co-starring Zooey Deschanel, Rashida Jones, Elizabeth Banks, and Emily Mortimer, directed by Jesse Peretz ("The Ex").
The Ledge
nA cop (Terrence Howard) is dispatched to talk a seemingly suicidal man (Charlie Hunnam) off a ledge, only to discover he may not be there of his own free will. Liv Tyler co-stars.
nA high school slacker facing imminent graduation (or not) decides to embrace academia at the 11th hour. He is helped by the school beauty and a post-grad mentor. Starring Freddie Highmore, Emma Roberts, and Michael Angarano.
Raymond Police
nSadly, not a solo outing for Nick Swardson's "Reno 911" character. Instead, "Terri" is about a high school outcast who strikes up an odd but ultimately touching relationship with his school's vice principal. John C. Reilly and Jacob Wysocki star.
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The Guard
nA new spin on the buddy cop formula. Brendan Gleeson stars as a jocular Irish cop who gets partnered with a by-the-book FBI agent (Don Cheadle) on the trail of an international drug ring. Liam Cunningham and Mark Strong co-star as...what else? Bad guys.
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Another Happy Day
nEllen Barkin stars as a high-strung woman thrust back into the maelstrom that is her dysfunctional family. Why? Because "Sundance," that's why. We're guessing the title is meant to be ironic.
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The Greatest Movie Ever Sold
nDocu-huckster Morgan Spurlock builds an entire film around his efforts to sell a movie based solely on product placement. Hollywood has no idea what's suppose to be funny about that.
Like Crazy
n"Star Trek's" Anton Yelchin stars as an American kid who falls for a British beauty (Felicity Jones) while at school in L.A. When she has to return to the UK, their relationship is strained across the pond.
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Higher Ground
nThe directorial debut for actress Vera Farmiga ("Up in the Air"), "Higher Ground" details a rootless woman's search for spiritual enlightenment in a fundamentalist commune. Joshua Leonard ("Hump Day") co-stars.
Perfect Sense
nAn epidemiologist meets a Glaswegian truck driver who has lost his sense of smell and is prone to crying fits. Right, so..."quirky" then? Stars Ewan McGregor and Eva Green.
Margin Call
nKevin Spacey, Paul Bettany, Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto, Demi Moore,and Stanley Tucci star in this white-knuckle drama about the inner workings of a financial institution on the eve of the 2008 global economic meltdown.
Another Earth
nA composer and an astrophysicist discover the existence of an alternate Earth. When tragedy strikes O.E. (Original Earth), they have to decide whether to stay put or try their luck on the new planet. William Mapother ("Lost") and writer/actress Brit Marling star.
Win Win
nWritten and directed by actor Tom McCarthy ("Meet the Parents"), "Win Win" follows a sad sack attorney and part time high school wrestling coach whose life gets turned upside down after trying to help an elderly client. Stars Paul Giamatti, who is pretty much the top of the "sad sack character" speed dial.
The Details
nA suburban dad's quest for a great lawn stirs up a hornet's nest of problems for him, his wife, and their marriage. "Spider-Man" co-stars Tobey Maguire and Elizabeth Banks reteam as the embattled couple.
Martha Marcy May Marlene
nA young girl who has been brainwashed by a violent cult escapes and tries to reconnect with her family. Haunted by paranoia, she finds her recent past difficult to bury.
Cedar Rapids
nEd Helms returns to the "Hangover" milieu as an insurance agent who goes off the rails during a business trip. Except instead of Vegas, it's the titular Iowa town. Joining him are John C. Reilly, Anne Heche, Alia Shawkat, and Sigourney Weaver.
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Red State
n"Clerks" director Kevin Smith breaks out of his verbose slacker comfort zone and tries his hand at horror. A group of horny teens (OK, so there's some comfort zone here) answer an online sex ad and find themselves embroiled in a holy war with religious extremists. Want to bet this was pitched as "Porky's" meets "Children of the Corn"?
I Melt With You
nThomas Jane, Jeremy Piven, Rob Lowe, and Christian McKay star as four friends who take a break from their lives to indulge in various vices. Unfortunately, the sex and drugs and rock and roll force them to face some uncomfortable questions. Carla Gugino and adult film star Sasha Grey co-star.
Salvation Boulevard
nCharismatic TV preacher and lord of a religious empire Pastor Dan has this world and the netx locked up. Of course, circumstances conspire to bring it all down around him. This biting comedy stars Pierce Brosnan, Jennifer Connelly, Ed Harris, Greg Kinnear, and Marisa Tomei.
Little Birds
nTwo teen girls desperate to escape their boring lives in the outskirts of California decide to follow three boys to Los Angeles. Naturally, some forceful and abrupt growing up takes place. Stars Juno Temple, Kay Panabaker, Leslie Mann, Kate Bosworth, Kyle Gallner, and Chris Coy
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The Future
nQuirky auteur Miranda July ("Me and You and Everyone We Know") returns with this, yes, quirky and time-bending fable about a couple who panic and start dissecting their lives on the eve of adopting a cat. The movie is narrated by the cat. Once again: Quirky.
The Son of No One
n"Guide to Recognizing Your Saints" writer/director Dito Montiel directs this thriller about a young cop assigned to his old Queens neighborhood were dark secrets lurk. Channing Tatum, Tracy Morgan, Katie Holmes, Ray Liotta, Al Pacino, and Juliette Binoche round out the impressive cast.
Take Shelter
nMichael Shannon stars as a small town family man haunted by terrifying dreams. Keeping them mostly to himself, he begins inexplicably building a storm shelter in his backyard. Psychological turmoil ensues.
nA Brooklyn teen tries to hide her double life from her parents. By day, she's a dress and earrings girly girl. By night, she's a baseball cap and hoodie-wearing club hopper. Spike Lee executive produced this feature by debut director Dee Rees.
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The Convincer
nGreg Kinnnear, Alan Arkin, and Billy Crudup go head to head to head in this darkly comic story of a shady insurance salesman who attempts to swindle a retired farmer.
nDescribed as a "cerebral road movie," "Here" stars Ben Foster ("3:10 to Yuma") as a satellite-mapping engineer who impulsively embarks on a journey across Armenia with a beautiful local (Lubna Azabal).
Meek's Cutoff
nMichelle Williams, Bruce Greenwood, Paul Dano, and Zoe Kazan star in this 1845-set tale of a pioneer family struggling to survive along the unforgiving Oregon Trail. An untrustworthy guide - the titular Meek - and a Native American hostage only add to the family's hardships.
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Page One: A Year Inside the New York Times
nThis documentary takes aim inside the iconic news institution as it struggles to reinvent itself in an age where the internet is trumping the newsstand.
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Bobby Fisher Against the World
nA look at the genius of chess prodigy Bobby Fischer and how his ascension into the international spotlight took a crippling toll on his fragile psyche.
nFormer Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner (2005) Eugene Jarecki takes on the life and legacy of our 40th President.
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The Devil's Double
nBased on true events, "The Devil's Double" tells the story of an Iraqi army lieutenant who gets drafted into being the body double for Saddam Hussein's eldest son, Uday. Dominic Moore ("Mamma Mia!") takes on dual roles of Uday and his double.
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nProvocative filmmaker Gregg Araki returns with an omnisexual romp involving drugs, witchcraft, and questionable hookups. Stars Thomas Dekker, Haley Bennett, Chris Zylka, Roxane Mesquida, Juno Temple, Andy Fischer-Price.
Shut Up Little Man! An Audio Misadventure
nTwo young guys living in a crappy San Francisco apartment in the late 80s began recording their neighbor's violent rants as they bled through the walls. The tapes became the stuff of underground legend, and this is the story behind it.
nThis documentary takes audiences inside the secretive world of the Travellers, a nomadic Irish clan with its own traditions and rituals. One such tradition sees all inter-clan disagreements settled through brutal bare-knuckle fighting.
Hobo With a Shotgun
nYes, this is for real. A loving tribute to grindhouse movies of the 70s and 80s, "Hobo" stars Rutger Hauer as, well, you can probably figure it out. When the train-hopping transient lands in a town ruled by criminals, he takes matters into his own hands.
nKeisha Castle-Hughes, Rachel Leigh Cook, and Kristin Kreuk star in this twist on this dark and moody twist on the vampire legend. A boy with a strange condition that compels him to drink blood hunts online for suicidal girls who might be able to help him out.
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Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest
nActor Michael Rapaport ("True Romance") directs this documentary about the rise and fall of 90s Hip Hop pioneers A Tribe Called Quest.
nLike fellow British actors-turned-directors Tim Roth and Gary Oldman, Paddy Considine makes his debut with a bleak and violent emotional drama. "Tyrannosaur" follows a self-destructive man (Peter Mullan) on a path to possible redemption via a relationship with a charity-shop worker (Olivia Colman).
I Saw the Devil
nA blood-soaked revenge drama, "I Saw the Devil" tracks the brutal methods used by a secret service agent on the hunt for the serial killer who murdered his fiancee.
Fight For Your Right Revisited
nThis short film from Beastie Boy Adam Yauch features one the most staggering casts at Sundance: Seth Rogen, Elijah Wood, Danny McBride (all playing the three Beasties), Jack Black, Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly (um, also playing the three Beasties), as well as Susan Sarandon, Stanley Tucci, Orlando Bloom, Kirsten Dunst, David Cross, Will Arnett, Amy Poehler, Jason Schwartzman, Adam Scott, Rainn Wilson, Steve Buscemi, Chloë Sevigny, Alicia Silverstone, Martin Starr, Ted Danson, Rashida Jones, and R.E.M.'s Mike Mills.
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