A Roundup of the Hottest Star Studded Parties at the Sundance Film Festival

26 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Jack Black Is Brave, Heartbreaking In ‘D Train’ At Sundance.

IFC is close to signing a deal for U.S. distribution rights to “The D Train,” the high school reunion comedy that debuted this week at the Sundance Film Festival. When it came time to shoot the film’s central sex scene between stars Jack Black and James Marsden, the team behind the bawdy comedy decided to wait until the last day of filming.

Dramatic competition screenings — “The Bronze” on Thursday night, and “The Overnight” and “The D Train” on Friday — brought the house down with unusual copulating between the main characters. Much has already been written about the acrobatic hookup in “The Bronze,” so we’ll concern ourselves with Friday’s entries in the “Most Surprising Sex Scene” competition. Variety critic Justin Chang had a mixed take on the film, writing, “this dark comedy might just as well be described as edgy and soft, audacious and coy, a largely enjoyable letdown.”

In “The Overnight,” about two couples spending a revealing evening together, much is made of the comparison of penis sizes between the under-endowed Alex (Adam Scott) and over-endowed Kurt (Jason Schwartzman). Because of its star power, it’s been viewed as one of the festival’s more commercial titles and there were a number of prominent executives and potential bidders in the audience, including Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos. “The D-Train” centers on a scheme by a high school reject (Black) to lure the most popular kid in his class (Marsden) back to their reunion.

Gerry, played by Australian actor Ben Mendelsohn, is an empty shell of man who slumps through life in dumpy trousers listening only to Joe Navarro books on tape. Directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck (“Half Nelson”) keep the motives and backstories of their leads ambiguous for most of the film, which laces every moment with tension and suspicion. Written and directed by Jarrad Paul and Andrew Mogel, the film also stars Kathryn Hahn, a restrained Jeffrey Tambor, and features a breakthrough performance by Russell Posner as Landsman’s teenage son. Fleck joked that he didn’t know what she was talking about since he wasn’t there that day and moved on, eliciting some groans from audience members expecting a more thoughtful answer. Paul and Mogel, who’ve previously written studio fare, deftly handle their starry cast and venture into new territory for the genre, but they come off as bullies as much as they do brave.

Nikki Reed was coy when asked about her rumored engagement to actor Ian Somerhalder, saying only, “Life is really great right now and I’m so excited for the future.” But she was effusive about her love for animals. The entertainer came to Sundance on Saturday to host the third annual Catdance Film Festival, a celebration of cats on screen that benefits the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

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