Sunday, January 14, 2024

Slamdance 2024 starts Friday

Sundance’s hipper and more fun sibling Slamdance starts Friday.  While many of you are going to run to the glitz of the Sun, you will get more for your buck if you just allow yourself to be Slammed.

Actually if you want to see some of the best films you’ll see in 2024 you want to  go to Slamdance, because having seen a number of the films I can honestly say they are kicking ass and a bunch of them are on my early best of the year list.

The truth of the matter is I’ve been a huge fan of Slamdance since I started to cover it. If you have been reading Unseen over the last decade plus  you know how I always wax poetic. What I loved about the festival was that it was a welcoming safe space that opened itself up and just threw films at me. It was home to the best kind of cinematic pushers who gave me great films and making sure that I could connect to anyone I wanted to connect to. They made me feel like a member of the family despite my always remaining in New York.

Also what I love about Slamdance is they are audience friendly. They love their audiences and make sure that everyone can see as much as they want at a reasonable price. They are affordable with a full festival pass around 250 bucks and a full virtual for only 50.   Yes just 50 bucks to sit  at home on your couch and watch movies for the length of the festival. Consider that the cost of Sundance in person is the down payment on a car and virtually you get banged for 25 bucks a film (35 if you were crazy and bought one of the sold out 10 film passes). Meaning you get everything at Slamdance virtually (thats close to 100 films) for the price of two films at Sundance. 

The choice is obvious financially if not entertainment wise.

Best of all Slamdance cares about great films, and this year if you go you’ll see films you'll remember forever and not end up at an over hyped platform for films that aren’t going to look so good this time next year.

I love this festival.

If you need a push let me tell you about some of the great films playing the festival:

CITIZEN WEINER is the story of a actor who decides to run for the NYC City Council...and it doesn't go where or how you think. Trust me.

SHADOW is a frightening short film about a shadow. 

DOSH is an awesome film about a woman, her husband and the danger of not dealing with mental illness. I want to see this turned into a feature.

PUNISHMENT is the unheralded film on this list. It's excellent look at several men in prison who take part in a Jesuit silent retreat.  There is something special here that opens as all sorts of doors for you to consider. Trust me this film will rock your world.

BRANDO WITH A GLASS EYE is going to be a film  that rattles the pillars of heaven. This is the story of an actor who wants to study in New York. Where it goes and how it goes is wonderful and it has a star making performance from Yiannis Niarros. Look for Hollywood to steal him- and possibly Oscar to honor him.

INHERITANCE I'm going to undersell this film and simply say this is like a true life BOYHOOD in that it covers six years, but the truth is it transcends that simple description becoming one of the best films of 2024, and it's painfully honest look at poverty, opioid addiction and the death of small town America. It does so in an honest way you've never seen before. I know it's early but I can assure you you will remember this film next year at this time. You absolutely must see this.

Go buy tickets either for in person or for the virtual. Information can be found here.

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