Sundance Film Festival: London has returned to Picturehouse Central for its sixth year from 29 July to 1 August 2021, as an in-person event. The Festival will once more welcome filmmakers to present their work to cinema audiences, with this year’s programme promising to include upwards of 12 features, panel discussions, Q+As and special guest appearances. The Festival opens with the UK premiere of Edgar Wright’s debut documentary The Sparks Brothers, a musical odyssey through five weird and wonderful decades with brothers Ron and Russell Mael. In partnership with Universal, consecutive screenings of the film will take place in multiple cinemas across the UK with a filmmaker Q+A simultaneously broadcast from Picturehouse Central on 29 July 2021.
Other highlights include:
First Date: High school student Mike (Tyson Brown) has, after long last, summoned up the courage to ask out the girl next door. He thought not having a car would be the least of his problems – but after he’s conned into buying a beat-up ’65 Chrysler, his night turns into a weird, wild ride fuelled by desire, bullets and burning rubber, as he finds himself targeted by a pair of cops, a criminal gang, and a vengeful crazy cat lady.
CODA: As a CODA – Child of Deaf Adults – Ruby (Emilia Jones) is the only hearing person in her deaf family. She’s stretched thin by the role she has to play, both helping the family’s fishing business stay afloat and acting as their interpreter to the hearing world. She finds sanctuary in music: after joining her school choir and realising it’s a passion she wishes to pursue outside of her academic life, she sparks both the interest of her music teacher and the indignation of her household.
The Blazing World: Carlson Young writes, directs and stars in this gauzy, fantasy-horror fever dream of a debut feature, in which she plays Margaret, a self-destructive young woman who returns to her family home decades after the accidental drowning of her sister. She’s been plagued with dreams of a strange world since she was a little girl, and after a mysterious man with a map whom she recognises from her childhood visits her one night, she decides to give in to the incessant calls of the alternate dimension she knows as The Blazing World – upon realising that within it, her dearly missed sister may still be alive.
Together Together: Young loner Anna (Patti Harrison) is adrift in her life, and decides, on a whim, to become a surrogate mother. Before she knows it, she’s hired to do the job for Matt (The Hangover’s Ed Helms) – a single man in his forties looking to raise a child alone. The somewhat bizarre circumstances bringing the two strangers together for the duration of Anna’s pregnancy begin to make them both reconsider the particulars of their takes on love.
Zola: Two girls bond over their “hoeism” and become fast friends. What’s supposed to be a trip from Detroit to Florida turns into a weekend from hell.