The nominations for the 27th Annual Independent Spirit Awards were announced this morning with The Artist and Take Shelter each nabbing five nominations. In addition to The Artist and Take Shelter, Drive, 50/50, The Descendants, and Beginners will duke it out for the top prize. Absent from the Best Feature list is Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris, though the film was recognized in Best Supporting Male (Corey Stoll) and Best Cinematography. Also of note, Elizabeth Olsen and John Hawkes landed nominations for Best Actress and Best Supporting Male for Martha Marcy May Marlene, and Ryan Gosling and Woody Harrelson were both singled out in Best Actor for Drive and Rampart respectively.
Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominations. Recognizing the best in independent film, the awards will be handed out on February 25th, the day before the Oscars.
Back during this year’s SXSW, I saw a number of excellent films, stuff that I walked out of the festival absolutely raving about: Joe Cornish’s Attack The Block, James Wan’s Insidious, and James Gunn’s Super, just to name a few. But the most challenging, disturbing, and—yeah, I’m gonna say it– haunting film that I saw at SXSW this year was made by a total newcomer, a dude I hadn’t heard of prior to this year’s festivities: Evan Glodell, whose Bellflower continues to rock my lame ass every time I see it. The film recently arrived on Blu-ray, and so I was given yet another opportunity to ponder Glodell’s bizarre vision. Did it hold up upon a fourth viewing? Does the crystal-clear Blu-ray format ruin the flick’s down-and-dirty aesthetic? Is Bellflower still one of the best films I’ve seen this year? Find out after the jump, folks.
Writer/director Evan Glodell’s Bellflower is one of the more divisive films of the year: judging from the conversations I’ve had with people since seeing the film at SXSW (all the way back in March), it appears that Glodell’s film is a “love it or hate it” kinda picture. By now, you’ve probably seen the film’s trailers, posters, and flame-spewing car (named Medusa), and you’re probably wondering what the hell Bellflower is all about. On the one hand, I’ve seen the film three times now and I’m still not sure I know exactly what it’s “about”. On the other hand, I took a crack at figuring it out when I spoke to Glodell earlier this week. Here’s a few of the highlights:
Glodell– like just about everyone else that’s seen his film– has a hard time giving Bellflower a one- or two-sentence description, and agrees that it defies easy categorization.
Glodell (who also appears in the film as Woodrow, the film’s lead character) says that, while he understands that the reaction to the film has been mixed, he hasn’t spoken to anyone that didn’t have positive things to say about his debut and is very excited that it’s been so well received.
Medusa– the fire-breathing car that appears throughout the film (and is heavily featured in Oscilloscope’s marketing for the film)– is actually Glodell’s standard, “going to the store to pick up milk and eggs” ride. It’s parked out in front of his house as we speak.
Glodell built his own cameras for the film, and intends to use a new rig for his follow-up project. Pressed for details about what that follow-up might be, all he’d say was that he’s got a first-draft completed on a script and that– like Bellflower– the film will defy easy categorization.
Check out the full interview after the jump:
Bellflower director Evan Glodell has style to spare and he could stand to spare some if he doesn’t know how to use it meaningfully. What starts off as a lifeless love story with a manic pixie dream girl eventually devolves into a narcissistic wasteland where a guy who gets royally screwed over begins to drown in dark nightmares of revenge, self-pity, and overwrought violence. Any stabs at honest emotions are undermined by the heavy-handed direction coupled with Glodell’s ill-advised decision to cast himself in the lead role. Brief moments of humor and humanity leak through the veneer, mainly from co-star Tyler Dawson, but everything is overshadowed by overgrown children calling each other “dude” and taking time off from the jobs they clearly don’t have.
We’ve decided to try out a new feature idea here on Collider called Poster Rewind. Since it’s hard to read every single article each day, we know some of you might miss things from time-to-time (unless it’s Batman news). Every weekend, we’ll have a recap of all the new posters that have been released during the previous week for your viewing pleasure. You can come here and marvel at the latest frame-worthy prints or deplore the overuse of photoshop on Cameron Diaz’ face. We’ll also provide a little background info on the films as a refresher to those who aren’t too familiar with the property or who’ve yet to hear about it.
For our first installment, this week saw posters from The Dark Knight Rises, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, The Muppets, 50/50, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Thing, Arthur Christmas, and Bellflower. Hit the jump to check them out.
New posters have been released for the cancer dramedy 50/50, the Planet of the Apes prequel Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the holiday animated family film Arthur Christmas, and the acclaimed indie flick Bellflower. Hit the jump to check out the posters and to learn more about each film.
I’ve tried to steer clear on knowing much about Bellflower. The reactions I’ve heard about it are positive, but the reactions also tend to be dumb-struck, awe-struck, and hovering around “What the fuck was that?” That’s a potent combination and so I’m staying in the dark so I can possibly share in that reaction. That’s why I haven’t watched the new trailer for the film, but you can check it out after the jump. Bellflower opens August 5th.
Based on the buzz out of Sundance and SXSW, Bellflower is situated at the top of my most anticipated list. Thankfully, Oscilloscope picked up the film for a planned summer release, so I won’t have to wait too long. Bellflower comes from the mind of Evan Glodell, credited as star, writer, director, producer, and editor on the DIY production. The story centers on two friends (Glodell and Tyler Dawson) who spend their free time “building flame-throwers and weapons of mass destruction in hopes that a global apocalypse will occur and clear the runway for their imaginary gang ‘Mother Medusa.’”
I’ve read just enough to know that the film is surprising enough to warrant a fresh first viewing. Thankfully, the first teaser trailer abides, seducing the viewer with critical praise and a hypercool tone rather than story details. Watch the trailer after the break.
While the 2011 Sundance Film Festival may be over, the acquisition deals certainly are not. A large number of films got picked up by distributors during the festival this year, and a few more have nabbed distribution deals recently. Oprah’s OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network) made its second acquisition of the festival (the first being the Chaz Bono documentary Becoming Chaz) with Yoav Potash’s justice system documentary Crime After Crime. THR reports that HBO is close to picking up another American justice documentary, Hot Coffee, and Pretty Pictures and Alliance Films have grabbed French and Canadian rights, respectively, for the documentary Page One: A Year Inside the New York Times. Finally, a film that one of Collider’s own Sundance attendees (Matt) had heard would not find distribution ended up getting a deal anyway: Evan Glodell’s Bellflower has been acquired by Oscilloscope Laboratories for all English-speaking territories.
If you missed any of our Sundance coverage, including reviews, other acquisitions and exclusive interviews, click here. For an overview of the entire festival, be sure to check out Matt’s Sundance Scorecard and Impressions from his time in Park City.