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Sundance Review || "Advantageous"

Metaphysical bodysnatching from the POV of the snatcher, Advantageous is a soft sci-fi-drama centered around a cool idea but repeatedly undone by shoddy execution, unconvincing performances and dreadful FX. Commendable though Jennifer Phang's mother-daughter relationship study might be in the context of Sundance's overabundance of father-son sagas, Phang is able to capitalize on the maternal bonds between ejector and ejected but has no idea which direction to take it in after it's been established. Instead, it's bagged up, zip-tied and casually thrown into an ebb of "does it really matter?"

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Sundance Review || "Slow West"

Michael Fassbender
is a welcome addition to any film marque - independent or otherwise. From the jaguar-like way he carries himself to the silky, chop salad baritone of his voice, his dangerous presence is inimitable and essential (even through a paper-machie helmet.) Like the great Western heroes of lore, he saunters on spurs, a meaty cigar never far from his tobacco-stained mouth. He's a gunslinger even when he's not armed. In Slow West though, he is. He's very armed, and deadly cool.

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Sundance Review || "Digging for Fire"


Displaying the kind of laid back candor that sums up the mumblecore founding member, Joe Swanberg revealed that once you have kids, "life is a clusterfuck." And so is Digging For Fire. Kinda. A lesser effort in the aftermath of two eruptively sweet victories (Drinking Buddies and Happy Christmas), Digging for Fire takes on the humps and bumps of marriage and the battle of young parenthood with an enviable cast for any director.

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Sundance Review || "Mississippi Grind"

There are some people who just can't help but roll the dice. No matter how far ahead or behind they are, they just need to have one more go at the "big win". And as any longtime gambler knows, the win is incomparable elation. Though in the long run, this mentality always loses. Statically, a lifetime of gambling is bankrupting. It leads to broken relationships, distrust and disquieting desperation. With some, the influence to bet it all becomes a certifiable addiction the likes of crack or caffeine or Lost. Those able to delude themselves blindly forgo the notion that the odds are never in their favor. The house always wins.

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