New Yorkers at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival

(released 1/18/2023)

The Sundance Film Festival starts tomorrow and runs through January 29, 2023. New York is represented with a few films. If you are attending, check them out and if not, keep an eye out for these films in the future.

From A.V. Rockwell comes A Thousand and One, which is her writing and directing feature debut. This feature is in the US Dramatic Competition. Focus Features is releasing the film in the US on March 31, 2023.

"Convinced it's one last, necessary crime on the path to redemption, unapologetic and free-spirited Inez kidnaps 6-year-old Terry from the foster care system. Holding on to their secret and each other, mother and son set out to reclaim their sense of home, identity, and stability in New York City."

From Carnivalesque Films is the documentary feature Kim's Video. Carnivalesque is filmmakers Ashley Sabin & David Redmon.

"For two decades, New York City cinephiles had access to a treasure trove of rare and esoteric films through Kim's Video. Originally run by the enigmatic Yongman Kim out of his dry-cleaning business, his franchise eventually amassed 55,000 rental titles. In 2008, facing a changing industry, Mr. Kim offered to give away his collection provided that it stay intact and be available to Kim's Video members. In a bid to revitalize tourism, the small Italian village of Salemi, Sicily became home to the archive. But after the initial publicity faded, so too did any sign of the collection. Enter filmmaker David Redmon, who credits Kim's Video for his film education. With the ghosts of cinema past leading his way, Redmon embarks on a seemingly quixotic quest to track down what happened to the legendary collection and to free it from purgatory."

Filmmaker Vuk Lungulov-Klotz's feature film debut is Mutt, which is in the US Dramatic Competition.

"Feña, a young trans guy bustling through life in New York City, is afflicted with an incessantly challenging day that resurrects ghosts from his past. Laundromats, subway turnstiles, and airport transfers are the hectic background to this emotional drama that overlaps past, present, and future. Settling the disharmony of transitional upheaval in relationships familial, romantic, and platonic is Feña's task at hand, and his resulting juggling act is equal parts skillful, fumbling, and honest. In negotiating his obliqueness, the poignant moments he finds between himself and others — as the distance between them closes — are warm, true, and touching."

From Directors Kristen Lovell and Zackary Drucker is the documentary feature The Stroll. This is Lovell's directorial debut. The film was produced by Matt Wolf (Recorder). The Stroll is premiering at Sundance and is already set to go to HBO. The film is in the US Documentary Competition.

"This is the definitive history of New York City's Meatpacking District, told by the transgender women of color who created its history. The now corporate, flush façade of the neighborhood was plastered over the world of transgender sex workers who lived, worked, loved, and died there. "The Stroll" was where trans women of color, shunned out of the workforce, turned to for a means of survival. Their perspective and insights constitute a rigorous archive of how heavy policing, violence both threatened and realized, and mass gentrification combined to create Manhattan’s built environment today."

A short film screening at Sundance is Mike Donahue's Troy. Donahue is a theatre director and this is his directorial film debut. This short pulled actors Dylan Baker, Dana Delany, and recently off a season stint on the Hulu series Only Murders in the Building, Adina Verson.

"Troy has loud sex. Troy has loud sex 24/7. Troy shares a wall with Thea and Charlie. Troy is ruining their lives… Or is he saving them?"

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