Festival Circuit 2020

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DarkImbecile
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Festival Circuit 2020

#1 Post by DarkImbecile » Wed Dec 04, 2019 5:48 pm

With the announcement of the Sundance 2020 program, it's time for a new Festival Circuit thread!

I'll keep this post updated with program, jury, awards, and other relevant information on the major film festivals as the year in fests continues to develop. If you're lucky enough to be able to attend one of these (or another local or specialty festival), let the rest of us know which films to keep an eye on!

UPDATED 12/04/2019

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2020 Sundance Film Festival (Jan. 23 - Feb. 2): Program / Awards
Notable premieres: Tesla - Michael Almereyda; Uncle Frank - Alan Ball; Zola - Janicza Bravo; Minari - Lee Isaac Chung; Possessor - Brandon Cronenberg; Shirley - Josephine Decker; The Nest - Sean Durkin; Downhill - Nat Faxon, Jim Rash Dick Johnson is Dead - Kirsten Johnson; Kajillionaire - Miranda July; Falling - Viggo Mortensen; The Last Thing He Wanted - Dee Rees; Bad Hair - Justin Simien; The Glorias - Julie Taymor; Wendy - Benh Zeitlin

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70th Berlin International Film Festival (Feb. 20 - Mar. 1): Program / Jury (President:) / Awards
Notable premieres:

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73rd Cannes Film Festival (May 12 - May 23): Program / Jury (President: ) / Awards (Palme D'or: )
Notable premieres:
Competition:

Un Certain Regard:

Other Screenings:

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77th Venice International Film Festival (Sep. 2 - Sep. 12): Program / Jury (President: ) / Awards (Golden Lion: ; Silver Lion: )
Notable premieres:
Competition:

Out of Competition:

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47th Telluride Film Festival (Sep. 4 - Sep. 7): Program
Notable premieres:

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2020 Toronto International Film Festival (Sep. 10 - Sep. 20): Program / Awards
Notable premieres:

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58th New York Film festival (Sep. 25 - Oct. 11): Program
Opening Night -
Centerpiece -
Closing Night -

Notable premieres:

Festival Circuit 2019

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mfunk9786
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#2 Post by mfunk9786 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:13 pm

Has any film festival fallen off relevance-wise like Sundance has in recent years? Yikes

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swo17
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#3 Post by swo17 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:26 pm

I mean, their thing has always been discovering smaller American films, not landing all of the anticipated international titles. You really don't have any idea what you're getting into with any given film. To be honest, this low-hit-ratio grab-bag approach doesn't generally appeal to me much, though the one time I have gone (to Neil LaBute's The Shape of Things) was certainly a memorable experience.

Also, note that last year's festival saw the premiere of Luce, which I believe you were rather fond of

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mfunk9786
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#4 Post by mfunk9786 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:17 pm

Both films you mentioned are excellent, yes - but for a moment there, perhaps just because of the way tastes were going, it was a big splash film festival, and after a few high profile duds it is back into the shadows. That said, I guess Get Out premiered there, and that wasn't so long ago.

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The Elegant Dandy Fop
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#5 Post by The Elegant Dandy Fop » Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:42 pm

mfunk9786 wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:13 pm
Has any film festival fallen off relevance-wise like Sundance has in recent years? Yikes
My hot take is that it was never good. It's a place for mediocre filmmakers to make their first films a calling card to the larger industry and to be quickly devoured up and made irrelevant. If you look at the calendars of past years, you have films like Reservoir Dogs surrounded by mostly forgettable films (with the exception being maybe In The Soup) and even some of the hits/talked about films from Sundance quickly drop social relevance (Open Water, Death of a President, Napoleon Dynamite, Thirteen, etc.)

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zedz
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#6 Post by zedz » Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:44 pm

The Elegant Dandy Fop wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:42 pm
mfunk9786 wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:13 pm
Has any film festival fallen off relevance-wise like Sundance has in recent years? Yikes
My hot take is that it was never good. It's a place for mediocre filmmakers to make their first films a calling card to the larger industry and to be quickly devoured up and made irrelevant. If you look at the calendars of past years, you have films like Reservoir Dogs surrounded by mostly forgettable films (with the exception being maybe In The Soup) and even some of the hits/talked about films from Sundance quickly drop social relevance (Open Water, Death of a President, Napoleon Dynamite, Thirteen, etc.)
I kind of agree. It seems to me to be a festival that - even more than most - runs on buzz, and there's generally a huge gulf between the festival buzz and the actual quality of the films (and / or the critical consensus about them). The supposedly "hottest" films from Sundance are often ones that nobody could care less about a few months later, and films that ultimately are considered important are often unrecognized at the time.

I had a quick look back to 2014 and 2015 and found precious little from the competition that anybody would even remember today. In 2014, arguably the only significant film in the long term was Whiplash, though people might still remember Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter for its high concept premise, and music fans (rather than movie fans) might have some affection for God Help the Girl and 20,000 Days on Earth.

Probably the best remembered film from the main 2015 competition would be The Witch. That year's big winner Me & Earl & the Dying Girl retains some recognition (but do people actually like it?), and the festival deserves some credit for programming Chloe Zhao's debut, even though it didn't win any awards. The really significant film in that year's programme, Sean Baker's Tangerine, can be found in the Next sidebar, and didn't get any award recognition.

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swo17
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#7 Post by swo17 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:53 pm

Yes but if it weren't for Sundance, I wouldn't have gotten to see Tilda Swinton at a Sigur Rós concert

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furbicide
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#8 Post by furbicide » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:07 pm

zedz wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:44 pm
The Elegant Dandy Fop wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:42 pm
mfunk9786 wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:13 pm
Has any film festival fallen off relevance-wise like Sundance has in recent years? Yikes
My hot take is that it was never good. It's a place for mediocre filmmakers to make their first films a calling card to the larger industry and to be quickly devoured up and made irrelevant. If you look at the calendars of past years, you have films like Reservoir Dogs surrounded by mostly forgettable films (with the exception being maybe In The Soup) and even some of the hits/talked about films from Sundance quickly drop social relevance (Open Water, Death of a President, Napoleon Dynamite, Thirteen, etc.)
I kind of agree. It seems to me to be a festival that - even more than most - runs on buzz, and there's generally a huge gulf between the festival buzz and the actual quality of the films (and / or the critical consensus about them). The supposedly "hottest" films from Sundance are often ones that nobody could care less about a few months later, and films that ultimately are considered important are often unrecognized at the time.

I had a quick look back to 2014 and 2015 and found precious little from the competition that anybody would even remember today. In 2014, arguably the only significant film in the long term was Whiplash, though people might still remember Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter for its high concept premise, and music fans (rather than movie fans) might have some affection for God Help the Girl and 20,000 Days on Earth.

Probably the best remembered film from the main 2015 competition would be The Witch. That year's big winner Me & Earl & the Dying Girl retains some recognition (but do people actually like it?), and the festival deserves some credit for programming Chloe Zhao's debut, even though it didn't win any awards. The really significant film in that year's programme, Sean Baker's Tangerine, can be found in the Next sidebar, and didn't get any award recognition.
I was having a look at the films I've seen from the last few years, and there's been some pretty good stuff (although maybe thinned out a little over the past couple of years; not sure what happened to me in 2018!). Ones I really liked are bolded (and most of the others are at least okay – I'd only single out Kumiko, Mistress America and Divine Love as bad or disappointing films).

2014
Happy Christmas
Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter
52 Tuesdays
Wetlands
Boyhood
The Trip to Italy
Appropriate Behaviour
Listen Up Philip

2015
The Diary of a Teenage Girl
The Witch
Pervert Park
The Summer of Sangailé
Mistress America
The Forbidden Room

2016
Certain Women
Wiener-Dog

2017
Beach Rats
Golden Exits
Call Me by Your Name
Get Out

2018
-

2019
Divine Love
Monos
The Souvenir
Animals

That actually seems like a pretty good strike rate, at least so far as my opinion's worth anything. I'm not sure that Cannes or Venice would fare all that much better, to be honest.

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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#9 Post by therewillbeblus » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:28 pm

Pretty sure Manchester By The Sea premiered at Sundance ‘16. I remember reading raves in January and eagerly waiting ten long months through icon death and political horror before I finally saw it.

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DarkImbecile
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#10 Post by DarkImbecile » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:52 pm

Hereditary was another big one from 2018...

I agree with swo that Sundance has always been inherently more scattershot than some other festivals; if I had to choose one that’s been on the decline and in danger of slipping from the ranks of the majors, I’d pick Berlin, which seems to be struggling more each year to secure the major filmmakers monopolized by Cannes, Venice, and Toronto.

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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#11 Post by ianungstad » Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:43 am

Sundance has to be the only major film festival where the dramatic competition slate is usually the most underwhelming batch of films in the whole lineup. The critical darlings tend to be in the star studded Premieres category (Before Midnight, Boyhood, Call Me By Your Name, Certain Women, Manchester by the Sea, Get Out, etc) or the NEXT sidebar(meant for the more "experimental" films)

The Souvenir actually was a competition title but played (and won) the World Cinema program, which is another competition slate that is mostly ignored/DOA.

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domino harvey
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#12 Post by domino harvey » Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:29 am

Fop, I regret to inform you that Napoleon Dynamite is just as well-known and culturally relevant as any other successful comedy from the era

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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#13 Post by The Elegant Dandy Fop » Thu Dec 05, 2019 4:27 am

domino harvey wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:29 am
Fop, I regret to inform you that Napoleon Dynamite is just as well-known and culturally relevant as any other successful comedy from the era
I’ll believe when I see a Gen-Z kid unironically wearing a “Vote for Pedro” shirt.

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DarkImbecile
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#14 Post by DarkImbecile » Thu Dec 05, 2019 8:20 am

Has anyone ever worn that shirt unironically, even in the movie itself?

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Timec
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Re: Festival Circuit 2020

#15 Post by Timec » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:47 am

ianungstad wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:43 am
Sundance has to be the only major film festival where the dramatic competition slate is usually the most underwhelming batch of films in the whole lineup. The critical darlings tend to be in the star studded Premieres category (Before Midnight, Boyhood, Call Me By Your Name, Certain Women, Manchester by the Sea, Get Out, etc) or the NEXT sidebar(meant for the more "experimental" films)

The Souvenir actually was a competition title but played (and won) the World Cinema program, which is another competition slate that is mostly ignored/DOA.
This was my experience as well. I went to quite a few screenings during the last few years I lived in Utah, and I almost always preferred the auxiliary categories to the main competition slate (though the latter did have some gems, like “Another Earth” and “Upstream Color.”)

…As for “Napoleon Dynamite”—it came out while I was in high school (in Utah), and it was thoroughly spoiled for me after just a few months of hearing it endlessly quoted by both classmates and teachers.

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