Sundance Diary: Day Seven

James Gandolfini, Mimi Kennedy and Paul Solet, plus The Only Good Indian and The Immaculate Conception Of Little Dizzle.

by Amber Wilkinson and Tony Sullivan

If you would have told my that one day I would be in the room when James Gandolfini kissed the hand of a male film critic, it's fair to say that I wouldn't have believed you, but today it happened. I guess that means he liked the review...

Spent an entertaining 20 minutes interviewing Gandolfini and Mimi Kennedy, who star alongside Peter Capaldi in In The Loop. Both of them were on fine form and happy to chat about the film, improvisation and their upcoming theatre projects. Mimi, in particular, was full of the joys of Obama's inauguration earlier in the week. We'll be bringing you a feature about the interviews in time for the film's showpiece screening as the opening night film of Glasgow Film Festival, next month. There is no doubt that the film is a winner, so if you can't catch it there, look out for it when it gets a release.

Interviewing, unfortunately, takes time, as does writing diary entries and filing copy, so it was a bit of a poor showing on the film watching today, as I only managed to catch The Immaculate Conception Of Little Dizzle. This surreal film - about cookies that heat in the mouth and 'pregnancies' which end in what can only be described as blue bum fish - is bursting at the seams with imagination, even if, when taken as a whole, it is distinctly unruly.

Director David Russo has a background in animated short films and his use of animation here is excellent, although certain segments still feel like snippets of short movies or pop videos rather than hanging together as a whole. Particularly good is a shower scene in which words appear on the cubicle wall before running over the body of the chief protagonist Dory (Marshall Allman - more familiar as the face of LJ in Prison Break) before disappearing down the drain. It would be interesting to see Russo channel his energies into shooting someone else's story idea. Little Dizzle could have an afterlife as a late night festival film, however, and it is also worth mentioning actor Vince Vieluf. Something of a TV veteran, I can't recall seeing him in any big screen offerings before, but he is certainly worth looking out for in the future.

Tony meanwhile, interviewed Grace director, Paul Solet, officially this time. He writes... I admire his passion and enthusiasm for genre projects and will be bringing you a full interview feature soon. Unlike the rest of us, Solet shows no signs of flagging, oh to have that amount of energy.

I also caught a press screening of The Only Good Indian. It's a curious pseudo western concerning the attempted westernising of Native American Indians. Story focuses on square peg, "Charlie" (Winter Fox Frank), who runs away only to be caught by Cherokee bounty hunter, Sam Franklin (Wes Studi). An incident during the journey sets a relentless local sheriff on their trail.

Set somewhere in the early part of the 20th century, and with an eye for period detail, a worthy story that should feel epic but doesn't.

Finished the day short Treevenge followed by Dead Snow, pictured right, a tale of vacationing med students who end up enjoying fun in the snow. Unfortunately the local pack of Nazi zombies have different ideas.

Just when you'd thought you'd seen every permutation of the living dead here's a refresh... oh... wait... there was Shock Waves and the Frozen Dead with similarities to this one, nevertheless goofy, blood splattered fun for not all of the whole family.

Share this with others on...

Edward Lachman and New York remember Robert Frank Photographer/filmmaker passed away aged 94

The magpie Lauren Ashley Carter talks fight scenes, troubled characters, animal inspiration and Artik

A cinematic runway Anna Sui on the influence of cinema and Dennis Nothdruft on fairy tales in The World Of Anna Sui

Forming a mountain Rick Alverson on Tye Sheridan, Jeff Goldblum, Udo Kier, and Denis Lavant in The Mountain

Postcard from Venice Film Festival The Truth, Only The Animals, Joker, Ad Astra, J'Accuse, The Laundromat and more

Facing the music Andrew Desmond on Freya Tingley, Rutger Hauer, Alexis Maingaud and The Sonata

More news and features