The Best and Worst of the 2016 SXSW Film Festival

AUSTIN, TX: “As a filmmaker, this is a dream come true,” director Keith Maitland told the packed house at the Paramount Theater Thursday morning, before a screening of his Grand Jury Prize-winning documentary Tower. There was a catch in a his voice and a tear in his eye, and it was easy to get caugh up in his emotion; it’s something I saw from a lot of filmmakers at this year’s South By Southwest Film Festival, a fest renowned for its populist spirit, in which film fans and filmmakers and film critics intermingle freely, drinking together, sharing ideas, having a beer, and watching movies. This year’s slate was, as ever, eclectic and frisky and bracing and sublime; here is the best (and worst) of what we saw.