The Sundance Film Festival
Industry insiders and ardent film fans flocked to Park City, Utah, for an early peek at promising new indie movies. The lowdown on 2005’s crop:
BEYOND FRIENDS In the likable ensemble comedy Happy Endings, Lisa Kudrow gives a knockout comic performance as a woman looking for the son she gave up for adoption 20 years earlier.
BEST SIGHT GAG A dissolute Pierce Brosnan, clad only in a black Speedo and matching ankle boots, marches drunkenly through a hotel lobby in The Matador. This larky comic thriller casts Brosnan as a hit man suffering from burnout.
HIGH WATTAGE Rising star Naomi Watts sparkles in Ellie Parker, a slight but amusing film following the travails of an aspiring Hollywood actress.
WHEN MOM MOVES IN A young lesbian Chinese American doctor is thrown for a loop in the winning offbeat romantic comedy Saving Face when her widowed mom (Joan Chen) shows up at her doorstep. Mom is pregnant but won’t name the father.
CAREER CHANGE A pimp (Terrence Howard) hopes to make it as a hip-hop singer in Hustle & Flow, an entertaining drama that plunks a familiar follow-your-dream story into an unconventional, seamy setting. This should make the talented Howard a star.