Sundance London: 2023 Preview

06 Jul 2023 BY Steven Ryder in Film Features

4 mins
Scrapper Image
Scrapper Image

Taking place every January in Utah, USA, the Sundance Film Festival is an important and influential landmark for any film year. Its mission is to give a platform for up-and-coming filmmakers that are on the cusp of breaking through and championing independent cinema across the world. Over the years, it has been the starting point for popular films such as Get OutBrooklynThe Blair Witch Project and Whiplash, all of which can be viewed on Into Film+ and Into Film+ Premium, our free streaming services.

For the past 10 years, the best of Sundance has been brought to London as part of a spin-off festival, allowing British audiences a special preview of films ahead of their theatrical release. The Sundance Film Festival: London 2023 will be taking place at Picturehouse London between Thursday 6th and Sunday 9th July. Our curators have picked their top recommendations for young audiences alongside similar films on Into Film+.

Scrapper (11+)

The British kitchen sink drama gets a glorious makeover in this blisteringly energetic feature film debut from director Charlotte Regan. Told with great humour and effective sentimentality, the story follows Georgie, a hugely charismatic 12-year-old girl who has found herself living alone after the sudden death of her mother. Evading social services and paying rent through stealing bikes with her best friend Ali, her seemingly content world is upturned after her father appears on her doorstep with unclear motives. Sensitively told and spearheaded by an abosrbing performance from newcomer Lola Campbell, Scrapper heralds a bold new voice in British cinema and never fails to entertain. 

And if this sounds like your kind of film, also check out the short film I Am Good at Karate on Into Film+. 

Scrapper screenings at Picturehouse Central:

  • Thu 6th July - 6.30pm, 6.45pm, 7.00pm
  • Fri 7th July - 6.30pm, 6.45pm

Picturehouse Entertainment will release Scrapper on 26th August 2023

Squaring the Circle (The Story of Hipgnosis) (14+)

Known worldwide for designing some of the most iconic music album art of all time, Hipgnosis were a duo of creatives that revolutionised design and defined an industry for over a decade in the 1970s. In this fascinating documentary, ingenious photographer Aubrey "Po" Powell describes how he and his late business partner Storm Thorgerson made their way from university dropouts to internationally known artists by using creativity, taking risks and breaking the rules. From Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon to Led Zeppelin's House of the Holy (amongst many more), this film explores the stories behind each album cover and features contributions from Paul McCartney, Noel Gallagher and other world-famous musicians. 

If design, photography and commercial art is your kind of thing, check out McQueen, streaming for free on Into Film+

Squaring the Circle (The Story of Hipgnosis) screenings at Picturehouse Central:

  • Friday 7th July - 9.15pm

Dogwoof will be releasing Squaring the Circle on 14th July 2023

Mutt (16+)

Beginning on a warm summer's night in New York City and taking place mover the subsequent 24 hours, Mutt introduces us to Feña as he reconnects with three people from his past who have suddenly appeared back in his life. After transitioning from female to male, Feña is feeling comfortable in his own body whilst others struggle with their perception of him. Flawed, angry and seeking out connections just like everyone else in the big city, he must navigate the complex relationships with his sister and ex-boyfriend as well as preparing to pick up his dad from the airport as he visits from Chile. Authentic, evocative and sensitive, this is a vital portrait of gender transition and the social pressures that come along with it in the 21st century. 

For another film that deals with this subject and celebrates diversity, be sure to check out Leo: Becoming a Trans Man for free on Into Film+

Mutt screenings at Picturehouse Central:

  • Saturday 8th July - 1pm
  • Sunday 9th July - 6.30pm

Steven Ryder, Curation Officer

Steven has an MA in Film Studies, Programming and Curation from the National Film and Television School. He has previously worked for various exhibitors around England and currently freelances as a film critic/podcaster.

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