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Accurate depiction of the spirit of Sundance; but needs an update,
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This review is from: Independent's Day (DVD)
This is a fine little documentary that captures both the excitement and frustration of the independent film scene at Sundance. It focuses on filmmakers who have brought their films to Sundance (and other festivals that take place in Park City at the same time, like "Slamdance" and, for a time, "Slumdance"), and addresses the ways that economics and artistry overlap at Sundance. Some excellent filmmakers are featured, and since the film is about a decade old now, many of these have gone on to very big things: Neil LaBute (who had only done In the Company of Men), Stephen Soderbergh (who was at the time just beginning Out of Sight -- Traffic - Criterion Collection and Erin Brockovich and the Ocean's Trilogy were so far unthought), and Greg Mottola (still just a Daytripper and not yet Superbad) just to mention a few. The film does a good job demystifying Sundance a bit, while still showing its excitement and importance. As another reviewer suggested, this doc could definitely use an update -- the number of people who go to Sundance has exploded since the film was made, and the number of submissions to the festival has nearly quadrupled, and with the rise of new digital technology and the growing importance of documentary (which is, ironically, completely unmentioned in this doc) and international film (also left out) to the festival there is a lot that could be covered here. Still, I can say that having been at Sundance five times the picture of the festival captured in "Independent's Day" remains fairly accurate. This doc would make a nice companion piece to A Decade Under the Influence which chronicles the changes taking place in Hollywood beginning in the seventies when "mavericks" took over Hollywood until the 80s when with the rise of blockbuster productions the business folks took it back.