The End of Love // When the mother of his two-year-old son suddenly passes away, struggling actor Mark is forced to confront his shortcomings. With his fate and his son’s now intertwined, he grapples with his ability to grow up - stuck between the life he once knew and the one waiting for him. When he has a meaningful encounter with a young mother, Mark is no longer able to live in the comfort of denial. Set against the backdrop of Los Angeles,this is an intimate and honest slice-of-life portrait of a father and son in transition.
I saw this film in my first couple of days at Sundance 2012. I really liked the half-home movie, half-film accounting a very sweet story (writer/director Mark Webber uses his own son and mirrors some of his own experiences as a struggling actor while using other actors (Jason Ritter, Michael Cera, Amanda Seyfried) to play “themselves” and shows us a side of the industry we rarely get to see). I found the movie really effective in showing us a man who is trying to balance being a great father and a successful actor, all with the best intentions but not quite getting there. The End of Love was be On Demand in January and released in theaters in February.
Prior to the festival, the Sundance Institute releases videos of filmmakers discussing their films chosen to be screened that year in their “Meet the Artist” series. Check out Mark Webber discussing this film:
Watch more films in this series from the 2012 festival here and here.
51. Maybe playing on the sympathies of those who rescue you from choking IS a good way to make some extra cash. [Choke]
52. Sometimes you just have to give someone a chance to step up, especially family. [You Can Count On Me] 53. Racial tensions have a way to always bubble to the surface with devastating consequences. [Do The Right Thing] 54. Leave idiots alone; they sometimes have the best intentions. [Our Idiot Brother] 55. I definitely wish I could control my dreams and live within my fantasies [The Good Night] 56. Life is a game show - with a little luck, love, and motivation, you can make it through [Slumdog Millionaire] 57. Four walls can contain a whole secret life. [28 Hotel Rooms]
58. Some people can be worthy of battling the world for. Oh, and yes, exs can be evil. [Scott Pilgrim vs. The World] 59. Straightforward sex can be anything but. [Young People Fucking (YPF)] 60. Everyone has trouble from their high school past they are better off facing. [The Education of Charlie Banks]
Stay tuned; I’m more than halfway there…
Free Samples/The Tribeca preview trailer for the upcoming comedy that will screen at the upcoming festival. I already have this movie on my list of one I hope to catch while I’m there. It has all the makings for a good, quirky movie about young adulthood - a rambling Jesse Eisenberg, a confused girl trying to determine what do with her life, a scruffy Jason Ritter, and of course ice cream.
2 Days in New York Directed and written by Julie Delpy
Synopsis: This deliriously witty follow-up to 2 Days in Paris finds Marion (writer/director Julie Delpy) living a comfortable life in New York with her latest hipster boyfriend, Mingus (Chris Rock, brilliantly playing it straight), and their two young kids from prior relationships. A riotous comedy of cultural errors ensues when Marion’s totally unhinged, gleefully unfiltered family arrives from Paris to meet Mingus for the first time. Why I want to see it: Ahh, second chances. I missed this when it premiered at Sundance this year, and hopefully I’ll get a chance to see it during Tribeca. Anyone who knows me, knows I’m a HUGE Julie Delpy fan from Before Sunrise/Before Sunset and the prequel to this one, 2 Days in Paris. I’m also coming around to the charms of Chris Rock; he is, after all, the first celebrity I ever met (email me, and I’ll share the story with you).
Free Samples Directed by Jay Gammill, written by Jim Beggarly
Synopsis: Jillian is having a bad day. She’s got a raging hangover, she’s starting to think dropping out of Stanford Law to become an artist wasn’t the best career move, and things are weird with her faraway fiancé. Can spending the day parked in an ice cream truck doling out samples—and a good dose of sass—to oddball Angelenos shake her out of her quarter-life crisis? Jess Weixler, Jesse Eisenberg, and Jason Ritter star in this quirky comedy. What I want to see this: Tatted Jason Ritter! Ice cream samples (wait is this channeling The Wackness?)! Twenty-somethings who think quarter-life crises are a real thing! An undisclosed role for Jesse Eisenberg!
Hysteria Directed by Tanya Wexler, written by Jonah Lisa Dyer and Stephen Dyer
Synopsis: Set in 19th-century London at the peak of Victorian prudishness, this racy romantic comedy tells the surprising story of the birth of the electro-mechanical vibrator. A progressive young doctor (Hugh Dancy, Adam) has his hands full relieving the city’s affluent society women of their melancholy, until an accidental discovery electrifies their lives forever—and sends sparks flying between him and a feminist rabble-rouser (Maggie Gyllenhaal). Why I want to see this: Ooo, I’m familiar with this story on how the vibrator was actually discovered (though I won’t tell you how I heard ::giggle like a schoolgirl::) and it’s so interesting that they actually created a feature around this story. I have been waiting for something new from the very talented Hugh Dancy so this may just do the trick.
Take This Waltz Directed and written by Sarah Polley
Synopsis: Margot (Michelle Williams) and Lou (Seth Rogen) are happily married. Their life is thrown out of order when Margot falls for another man and is forced to choose between the comfort of the familiar and the excitement of the unknown. Writer-director Sarah Polley’s follow-up to her acclaimed film Away From Here is a quirky, uncommonly heartfelt look at the evolving nature of love and the difficulty of sustaining a relationship over time. Why I want to see this: I can’t help but be interested in a world, no matter that it is fictitious, in which Michelle Williams and Seth Rogen are married. Simple as that.
Your Sister’s Sister Directed and written by Lynn Shelton
Synopsis: Jack (Mark Duplass) hasn’t recovered from his brother’s death. His best friend—and late brother’s ex—Iris (Emily Blunt) sends him to her family’s isolated cabin for some quiet reflection, but complications, rivalries, and surprising revelations arise when both Iris and her heartbroken sister Hannah (Rosemarie DeWitt) end up at the cabin as well. Lynn Shelton’s long-awaited follow-up to Humpday heralds a graceful maturation of the reliably against-the-grain filmmaker. Why I want to see it: Yet another film I missed at Sundance. I really didn’t have any plans to see this movie but everywhere I went in Park City, I heard people talking about it and how great it was. That’s enough for me.
Day 3 [Jan 22]: I’m back on the business of watching movies. My first order of business this day was to get on the waitlist to check out the premiere of Nobody Walks, starring John Krasinski (such a cutie) and Olivia Thirlby (a film about a sexually-charged artist whose brief stay with a couple endangers their marriage). I knew it would probably be a long shot to get in but I wanted to try. Usually the best bet is to get there about 1 1/2 before they pass out waitlist numbers in order to get in the front of the line. I didn’t make it that early (it was alittle hard to get out of bed that morning!) but I did get #40 or so I thought I had a good chance to get into Eccles (a 1200 seat theater). Of course I ran into the girls I met the day before (they called out to me - “you’re slacking this morning!”, lol). While waiting, I met more people, a couple that was in town for the festival and one of their best friends. We talked for awhile and exchanged info (I love this festival!). I was almost heartbroken because when I came back to the theater after a break to await waitlist ticket sells, they call everyone up until my number. But fates were on my side and I got one of the last tickets because some reserved people didn’t show up. I enjoyed the film alot though unfortunately it didn’t blow me away. Great scenes though between the two leads, and of course it was great having John Krasinksi on the Q&A panel. He’s just as funny as you would think he would be. After the film it was more hanging out on Main Street for me. In the few hours I walked up and down the street, shopping and people watching, I saw Jason Ritter (again) twice - once when he was getting off a shuttle I was waiting to get on and the second time he passed me on the street. I think the guy is stalking me. :) I’m telling you, you can hang out in Park City all day and have a blast. Most of the film screenings are in Park City but there are a few in the surrounding areas (Sundance, Ogden, Salt Lake). I had a ticket that a showing of Twenty-Eight Hotel Rooms, starring the ever great and totally underrated Chris Messina, in Salt Lake. The film had a great concept about a man and a woman who has an affair by meeting in hotel rooms over the course of an extended period of time so I really wanted to see it. This year, there was a shuttle available between the two cities (score!), so I hoped on and got to hang out in Salt Lake for the first time. I loved the film. It created the perfect balance of intimacy, intrigue, and emotional complications. It was probably my favorite of all that I had seen. Big ups to Chris Messina! I try and follow his film career (I saw one of his last films, Monogamy, at the Tribeca film festival last year; not a great film overall but he was good in it) since I think one of these days he’s going to get a really great role and blow up. He has it in him.
Day 1 [Jan 20]: I’m finally down in Park City again! After a drive into downtown, I reached the heart of it all. I love this cute little town. Most of the day I spent chilling on Main Street, specifically in the Sundance Channel HQ, Co-Op, and HP cafe/lounge. The cool thing about hanging out is getting the free stuff. The sponsors of Sundance are everywhere and since this is not my first time, I know where to go to get the swag - in lounges people keep coming up to me with trays of free snacks, the signature free festival water bottle (Sundance is green, folks), giveaways in the Co-Op, and people handing out free products on the streets. The best thing though is celeb spotting and I had some good ones. Now that I think about it, all of my really Main street sightings have been around the same place - at the corner of Heber and Main where the Entertainment Weekly Photo Studio sits. My first was being surprised by James Marsden walking towards me on the empty sidewalk (I think he was trying to find the studio). It shocked me firstly because I didn’t expect him to just be in front of me when I looked up from the phone and secondly because he is so much hotter in person. He stopped behind me so I got to snap a picture. I also ran into Anthony Mackie as I crossed the streetby the EW studio later that day and again around the same area later that evening. I do have a sort of connection to him as he is a friend of a friend. I’ll leave it at that ::smile:: I tried to see my first movie for this year’s festival through the waitlist, Celeste and Jesse Forever (starring Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg; about a a married couple in their early 30s who has been together since high school and decide to break up since they have not experience dating but try and remain friends) but unfortunately not a single person from the waitlist got in. That’s the risk you take when you don’t have a ticket, especially when it was the premiere of a movie. Better luck tomorrow, hopefully.