The Sundance Film Festival kicks off today, the biggest and buzziest of the indie film fests – and something of starter pistol for the year, unveiling a fair number of the films and performances we’ll be talking about in the months ahead, even while we’re still taking about last year’s. (For example: current awards circuit contenders Call Me By Your Name, The Big Sick, Mudbound, and Get Out all debuted at Sundance ’17.) So here’s a sneak peek at what your film editor is most anticipating in Park City this year.
Sorry to Bother You
Until now, we knew Boots Riley as the lead vocalist for the unassailable political hip-hop group The Coup. And his feature directorial debut borrows not only the title of the group’s four-star 2012 album, but a fair amount of its music as well, complementing a concept that sounds bananas. Lakeith Stanfield plays a nowhere telemarketer who discovers (let me quote so I get this right) “a magical selling power living inside of him,” which takes him to the upper echelons of his corporation, much to the chagrin of his radical artist girlfriend (Tessa Thompson). Oh, and Armie Hammer co-stars as “the company’s cocaine-snorting, orgy-hosting, obnoxious, and relentlessly optimistic CEO.” I’m getting a very Putney Swope vibe off this thing – and that’s about the highest compliment I can think of.