PARK CITY, Utah – HBO’s “Leaving Neverland,” an explosive look at sexual abuse allegations against Michael Jackson, isn’t the only movie that has had Sundance Film Festival buzzing. Here are 10 more discoveries you should know about.
1. ‘Blinded by the Light’
A joyous reminder of why we love movies. Vibrantly directed by Gurdiner Chadha (“Bend It Like Beckham”), “Blinded” uses the music of Bruce Springsteen as the catalyst for a British-Pakistani boy’s (Viveik Kalra) coming of age. Part romance, part father-son drama, with a loving ode to immigrants that is unexpectedly timely, it has all the ingredients of a feel-good hit. New Line thinks so, too, having bought the film for $15 million (the highest purchase price of any film at the fest).
2. ‘Late Night’
Amazon scooped up this sweet, subversive comedy for $13 million, which stars Emma Thompson as a caustic veteran late-night host fading from the spotlight and the earnest new comedy writer (Mindy Kaling) who makes her show relevant again. Kaling’s whip-smart screenwriting debut deftly tackles gender politics and workplace diversity, and Thompson has never been better.
3. ‘The Report’
Already flagged as an awards contender in the vein of “Spotlight,” this scorching political procedural (which Amazon will release later this year) tells the true story of Daniel Jones (Adam Driver), a Senate staffer who led the investigation into the CIA’s use of “enhanced interrogation techniques” after 9/11. Look for Annette Bening in the supporting-actress race for her nuanced, spot-on turn as Sen. Dianne Feinstein.