Sundance ’22 was — for the second year in a row — an at-home affair for the SAGindie staff. We missed out on hosting our annual brunches and standing in line in the snow for movies, but we were still lucky enough to sample the wares of what the Sundance programmers provided this year. There were highlights, personal favs, and award-winners – all of which you can check out below!
- After Yang – Kogonada just weaves a good, nuanced story. Can’t decide if I like it more than Columbus or not. I love them both!
- Emergency – Unexpected in its tone. Funny, fraught, smart.
- Good Luck to You, Leo Grande – Just so good. Emma Thompson at her best, most vulnerable.
- Master – the story doesn’t completely hold up, but the directing is solid.
- Fresh – pretty good. Kept me interested.
- My Old School – inventive telling of an interesting story.
- Last Flight Home – damn that Ondi Timoner, she made a poignant film. I almost held it together.
Top 5 of the fest:
- Emily the Criminal
- Fire of Love
- Good Luck to You, Leo Grande
- Palm Trees and Power Lines
My favorite: Emergency. It somehow it melded elements of a Superbad-ish “one crazy night” movie with the seriousness of a Fruitvale Station-esque social commentary. A seemingly impossible task, but Carey Williams really pulled it off.
Other highlights: After Yang, My Old School, and the festival’s Roku app.
My favorite films of Sundance 2022 are Fresh and After Yang. Fresh was an unexpected favorite for me as I had never seen anything by Mimi Cave before, but this film’s directing, editing, and script really blew me away. What an incredible feature debut! After Yang, I had a feeling I’d love being a big Kogonada fan since Columbus. I was very moved with how this film turned the classic dystopian future tropes on their head and ended up being a comforting story about love and grief – even if it also happened to be about Bio-robots and clones.
Runners-up are Babysitter; Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul; Emily the Criminal; and Good Luck to You, Leo Grande.
2022 Sundance Film Festival Winners:
Grand Jury Awards – Dramatic
- U.S. Grand Jury Prize – Dramatic: Nanny
- Directing Award – U.S. Dramatic: Jamie Dack, Palm Trees and Power Lines
- Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award – U.S. Dramatic: K.D. Dávila, Emergency
- U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Ensemble Cast: 892
- U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Uncompromising Artistic Vision: Bradley Rust Gray, Blood
- World Cinema Grand Jury Prize – Dramatic: Utama
- Directing Award – World Cinema Dramatic: Maryna Er Gobach, Klondike
- World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Acting: Teresa Sánchez, Dos Estaciones
- World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Innovative Spirit: Leonor Will Never Die
Grand Jury Awards – Documentary
- U.S. Grand Jury Prize – Documentary: The Exiles
- Directing Award – U.S. Documentary: Reid Davenport, I Didn’t See You There
- Jonathan Oppenheim Editing Award – U.S. Documentary: Erin Casper and Jocelyne Chaput, Fire of Love
- U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Impact for Change: Aftershock
- U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Creative Vision: Descendant
- World Cinema Grand Jury Prize – Documentary: All That Breathes
- Directing Award – World Cinema Documentary: Simon Lereng Wilmont, A House Made of Splinters
- World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Excellence in Vérité Filmmaking: Midwives
- World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Documentary Craft: The Territory
Grand Jury Awards – Shorts
- Short Film Grand Jury Prize: The Headhunter’s Daughter
- Short Film Jury Award – U.S. Fiction: If I Go Will They Miss Me
- Short Film Jury Award – International Fiction: Warsha
- Short Film Jury Award – Non-Fiction: Displaced
- Short Film Jury Award – Animation: Night Bus
- Short Film Special Jury Award for Ensemble Cast: A Wild Patience Has Taken Me Here
- Short Film Special Jury Award for Screenwriting: Sara Driver, Stranger Than Rotterdam with Sara Driver
- Audience Award – U.S. Dramatic: Cha Cha Real Smooth
- Audience Award – U.S. Documentary: Navalny
- Audience Award – NEXT: Framing Agnes
- Audience Award – World Cinema Dramatic: Girl Picture
- Audience Award – World Cinema Documentary: The Territory
- Festival Favorite Award: Navalny
- Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize: After Yang
- Sundance Institute/Sloan Episodic Fellowship: Kathryn Lo
- Sundance Institute/Sloan Development Fellowship: Nuhash Humayun
- Sundance Institute/Sloan Commissioning Grant: Shawn Snyder and Jason Begue
- NEXT Innovator Award: Framing Agnes
- Sundance Institute/Amazon Studios Producers Award – Fiction: Amanda Marshall, God’s Country
- Sundance Institute/Amazon Studios Producers Award – Nonfiction: Su Kim, Free Chol Soo Lee
- Sundance Institute/Adobe Mentorship Award for Editing Fiction: Dody Dorn
- Sundance Institute/Adobe Mentorship Award for Editing Nonfiction: Toby Shimin
- Sundance Institute/NHK Award: Hasan Hadi
CONGRATS TO THIS YEAR’S FILMMAKERS AND AWARD-WINNERS AND TO SUNDANCE FOR PULLING OFF ANOTHER MEMORABLE YEAR!
If you’re an independent filmmaker or know of an independent film-related topic we should write about, email firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.