Michael and Nathaniel are both safely back in New York but a few more Sundance reviews are forthcoming as well as an Oscar discussion about the first possibilities for the new film year. The festival closes up tonight for another year and last night, they announced the winners. As with last year when Whiplash one both the Jury and the Audience award, one film took both again this year: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, based on the best seller by Jesse Andrews. Can we expect a similarly Oscar friendly trajectory?
Grand Jury Prize & Audience Award Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Alfonso Gomez-Rejon
Michael's review coming later today. It's said to be a bit Fault in the Stars-ish young people and terminal illness only better.
Directing Award The Witch, Robert Eggers
Michael's rave review. A 1630s set horror film about a religious family in Salem.
Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award The Stanford Prison Experiment, Tim Talbott
Nathaniel's Review. This one is based on the infamous 1971 college psychology experiment that's inspired other movies before it.
Special Jury Award – Excellence in Cinematography Diary of a Teenage Girl, Brandon Trost
Michael's review & Nathaniel's quick take. Michael liked it a bit more but expect a lot of talk about it when it's released. With Bel Powley, Alexander Skarsgard, and Kristen Wiig
Special Jury Award – Excellence in Editing Dope, Lee Haugen
Nathaniel's review. The editing has crackerjack timing and is deeply commendable for the first half but why is the second hour so much less taut?