Super Sundancers

Films that most definitely deserve a shout-out


There is nothing sadder than a forgotten glove, bereft of human and mate (we kept seeing them everywhere). Except, that is, the incredible film that goes unnoticed.

The awards ceremony is tomorrow, and who knows? Maybe some of our favorites will have their names called. In case they don’t, we’d like to take a moment to give each one a personal shout-out.

Better than the Miles High Club
Whiplash. “Miles Teller can act!” That was the word on the street. We fell for him last year as budding alcoholic Sutter Keely in The Spectacular Now (and even before that as Willard in the Footloose remake; can’t help it), but it’s newish writer/director Damien Chazelle’s band flick that really lets Teller show off his chops.

Best Vision
I Origins. Mike Cahill, who debuted with Another Earth, writes and directs another mishmash of love and science that stars Boardwalk Empire’s Michael Pitt as a scientist who falls in love at first sight. Indie darling Brit Marling plays his lab partner.

the skeleton twins!

Most Likely to Tickle Your Funny Bone
The Skeleton Twins. Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader play estranged suicidal siblings who can’t get their lives together. Both are serious roles, but it’s still the funniest thing we saw at the fest.

Best Undressed
White Bird in a Blizzard. Shailene Woodley bares her little white birdies (along with everything else) throughout writer/director Gregg Araki’s latest candy-colored mind warp.

Most Likely to Succeed
Frank. Aside from being glorified (deservedly so) by critics, leading man Michael Fassbender entered the theater for the film’s premiere to a host of female festival volunteers, screaming and running toward him from their posts.

Best Creature Feature
The Voices. Ryan Reynolds gets loopy in director Marjane Satrapi’s bloody genre bender, which thinks outside the serial killer box. It’s the darkest comedy with the brightest future, complete with chatty furry friends and a killer dance montage.

obvious child!

Best New Funny Lady
Obvious Child. Jenny Slate: Remember that name. She’s the laugh factory who delivers vulgar lines with a sweet smile in writer/director Gillian Robespierre’s hilarious feature debut about a new-era girl next door who gets dumped, fired, and pregnant, in that order.

Best Newbie
52 Tuesdays. Billie’s mom wants to be a man, but what does that mean for her? Director Sophie Hyde uses a chapter structure and brilliant actors to provide a fresh perspective on transgender experience, but what really got us: Tilda Cobham-Hervey (Billie), who goes by Tilly, is a first-time actress.

Most Original
Life After Beth. Zombies aren’t dead yet. Writer/director Jeff Baena and his stars, Dane DeHaan and Aubrey Plaza, breathe new life into an (almost) tired genre with this relationship comedy that’s big on brains.

Stream the awards ceremony, hosted by Nick Offerman and Megan Mullally, tomorrow, 8 p.m. ET, at sundance.org.

Photos: Daniel McFadden; Reed Morano; Chris Teague