Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sundance 2012 Wrap Up Post - non-film version

I look forward to Sundance all year long.  I've said before (okay, I say it maybe daily) that it's my Christmas.  So, I have to post-mortem it into oblivion.

Allow me to list what I liked and what I didn't like about this year's festival experience. What ruled and what didn't. 

Not so awesome:

* I didn't get to see David (D2), my LA buddy who was in town but attending mainly P&I screenings.  I blame this on D2 not having any social media presence whatsoever.  Grr!

* The amount of cell phone usage going on in theaters.  I cannot. Even. Type. About. This. I will get worked up. I might write a separate thing on it because it was so beyond the pale, folks.  I've seen more respectful audiences at the Regal Union Square on packed Friday nights.  Some people need to really be ashamed of themselves.  Now I am worked up. Damn it.

* The Temple theater.  Seriously, people - a venue that takes 30+ minutes to get to on a GOOD day, has almost no cell phone service, no place to sit and wait between movies, and three bathroom stalls for a 314-seat house? Was there NO OTHER place we could show movies? Surely Sundance can get another PC hotel or conference center to lend some space like the Yarrow or the Prospector. 

* This year's bumper - that is, the little trailer that plays before the movie starts. This is typically a 30 second little video that sets the tone of the festival, thanks the sponsors, and shows a little creativity and cleverness. This time around? It's like someone thought to himself "how can we make 1,300 people at a time want to avert their eyes to avoid throwing up? Oh I know, we'll throw about $5.00 in cash into creating a basic yet at the same time ugly thing that scrolls by super fast but just slowly enough so that you have enough time to keep shutting your phones off before the movie starts."   Barf!

Super awesome:

* Good people.  I was delightfully attached to Mr. Efrain Schunior at the hip throughout the entire film festival and though we disagreed on nearly every movie, we agreed on the important stuff - GUMMIES!  Beyond my dear Eef, I loved being able to spend a fair amount of time with my good buddy Amber - we usually don't cross paths at all during the fest due to how busy we are.  Matt, Tim & I shared many a warm shuttle ride, as we do.  I also enjoyed several conversations with the likes of the ever awesome Jordan, Kate, Brian, Chase.

* Not getting sick.  At all! I took Emergen-C every day, which I guess might have helped? And I was sick like two weeks before Sundance so maybe the Universe was like eh let's give the girl a break.

* 55 movies! I did it.  Shattered my previous record of 52 films set last year.  Holla! Oh and I was not shut out of ANY movie - I got into everything I wanted to see. Which brings me to my next awesome thing...

* Having a badge and tickets. This was my first year actually going to the festival with some tickets in advance, believe it or not. I bought a ticket package that allowed me to choose 20 tickets in advance during the first five days, and I also invested in an Adrenaline badge which granted me access to any movie showing before 11 AM or after 10 PM (which translates to two movies per day, the one in the 9 AM time slot and the one in the midnight one).   Unsurprisingly, this was fucking awesome.   I was worried it would lock me into my choices and mean that I couldn't adjust according to what the audience & critical reaction was. And to a certain extent that was true, but I was still able to adjust the morning and midnight movies. Plus, any freedom I lost was completely compensated for in STRESS I DID NOT FEEL about not having tickets.  There were multiple occasions where I actually got to sit down and have a meal with my friends, like a normal person. A meal! At Sundance! And I even went to a few parties.  I will Definitely invest in a ticket package and an Adrenaline badge next year. Highly recommended.

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