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Variety Film Review: ‘Emelie’


Michael Thelin’s cool, collected home-invasion chiller suggests he’s seen ‘Funny Games’ a few times, which is no bad thing.

“Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Deadly” could work as both an alternate title and shorthand synopsis for “Emelie,” a familiarly premised but stringently executed home-invasion chiller that rarely goes for the straight-up scare when a more insidious one will do. Likeliest to prey on the sensibilities of younger parents — and to unnerve anyone who still thinks of gifted Irish actress Sarah Bolger as that preciously innocent pre-teen from “In America” — music-vid helmer Michael Thelin’s lean, lo-fi debut feature calmly pushes against the nastier bounds of its genre territory as it places two young children in the care of Bolger’s profoundly unhinged imposter. This ambiguous protagonist’s backstory emerges a little more predictably than it should, but even with that knowledge in place, Thelin succeeds in keeping any presumption of eventual sanctuary impressively at bay.    Read more


THE LAND tells the story of four teenage boys who devote their summer to escaping the streets of Cleveland, Ohio to pursue a dream life of professional skateboarding. But when they get caught in the web of the local Queen-pin, their motley brotherhood is tested, threatening to make this summer their last.

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Rapper Nas to Executive Produce Sundance Movie ‘The Land’

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 18:  Nas performs at the Hennessy V.S presents

He’ll also produce the soundtrack to the film from Priority Pictures, Low Spark Films and Charles D. King’s MACRO. Famed rapper Nas has come on to executive produce Steven Caple Jr.’s The Land,” for which he’ll also produce the soundtrack. The film will debut in the NEXT section at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.

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Deadline ‘Ride’ Review: Helen Hunt Catches The Indie Wave & Stands Tall

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By Pete Hammond

May 4, 2015

For me one of the real discoveries of the 2015 movie year to date is the heartfelt independent Ride written and directed by Helen Hunt. She also stars as an overprotective mother (with reasons slowly revealed from her past) who follows her son (Brenton Thwaites) from New York City to the beaches of Southern California (where his father lives) when he secretly drops out of school and decides to try his hand at surfing. After stalking him in a hired limo, they finally confront each other and she decides to show him she’s not as resistant to change as he thinks — so, without his knowledge, she takes up surfing with a local beach dude (Luke Wilson) in an effort to come to terms not only with her son but also herself. Read more

Sundance: IFC Films Picks Up U.S. Rights to ‘Stanford Prison Experiment’

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By Tatiana Siegel

The film stars Billy Crudup, Ezra Miller and Michael Angarano.

IFC Films has acquired U.S. rights to Kyle Patrick Alvarez’s The Stanford Prison Experiment.

The film, which was written by Tim Talbott, stars Billy Crudup, Ezra Miller, Michael Angarano, Tye Sheridan, Johnny Simmons, Olivia Thirlby, Nick Braun, Thomas Mann, Ki Hong Lee, James Wolk, James Frecheville and Moises Arias.

The film is based on the real-life research of Dr. Zimbardo, who in the summer of 1971 launched a study on the psychology of imprisonment in which 18 male undergraduates are randomly assigned the role of either guard or prisoner. The test subjects rapidly begin to embody their roles: the guards becoming power hungry and sadistic, while the prisoners plot a reprisal to the degradation they suffer. As Zimbardo and his team monitor the escalating conflict, they begin to question their own role in the experiment. Read more

Sundance Hands Out Science-In-Film Prizes

By Dominic Patten

Kyle Patrick Alvarez’s The Stanford Prison Experiment won the $20,000 Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize today as the Sundance Instituteunveiled its Science-in-Film Prizes in Park City. The film is based on the infamous 1971 psychological exercise in which college students exhibited shockingly cruel and sadistic behavior when divided into camps of prisoners and prison guards.

Archive writer-director Jonathan Minard and writer Scott Rashap picked up the Sundance Institute/Sloan Fellowship, and Jon Noble (Tyfus) and Cutter Hodierne & John Hibey (Otzi) received the Sundance Institute/Sloan Commissioning Grants, presented through Sundance Institute’s Feature Film Program. Archive follows two lovers who face the intangibility and distance that characterized their relationship — a virtual affair lived entirely through email and chat. In Tyfus, two Polish doctors try to protect their town from the Nazis by secretly engineering a fake outbreak of typhus. Otzi sees two hikers discover a perfectly mummified corpse high in the Italian Alps, revealing a 5,300-year-old murder mystery that becomes a legend around the world.

Alvarez takes home a $20,000 prize, and the grantees pick up $12,500 apiece.

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