The 5 Best Films of SXSW 2019
Every year, SXSW has some fantastic film selections and great premieres. This year had some of my favorites, surprisingly with big studios already attached. Check out the list below:
Booksmart is Olivia Wilde’s directorial debut, and she knocked it out of the park with a funny and authentic film about female friendship. The film stars Beanie Feldstein and Kaitlyn Dever and follows the girls as they embark on a night to remember, trying to cram all the partying of high school into one night. The comedy in the film is phenomenal. The writing by Susanna Fogel and Emily Halpern is nothing short of exceptional, and it is a must see as soon as it hits theaters.
SXSW always has some of the most interesting and unique films at the festival. Extra Ordinary is an excellent example of that. Set it Ireland, it tells the story of Rose (Maeve Higgins), a woman with supernatural abilities which she is reluctant to use, and her meeting Martin (Barry Ward), a man who desperately needs her help in getting rid of his dead wife’s spirit and saving his daughter from a new evil. Engrossing and hilarious, Extra Ordinary is that off the wall indie comedy that is so apparently crafted with love and care. It is a true hidden gem that I hope people get the chance to see!
Written and directed by Karen Maine, Yes, God, Yes is set in the early 2000s as Alice (Natalia Dyer) begins to discover her sexuality through the internet and AOL chatrooms. Her religious background and Catholic education seem to be in stark contrast to the feelings she is having and makes this confusing time even worse. Chock full of hilarious religious hypocrisy and dripping with 2000s nostalgia, Yes, God, Yes is an honest female coming of age film that is sure to resonate with audiences.
Never in a million years did I think Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen would have great chemistry in a film together, but I was wrong. Long Shot is charming and hilarious, featuring fantastic performances by both leads. Charlize Theron embraces a new type of role and is sensational, while Seth Rogen tones his over the top humor down a bit, making a delightful film.
The biggest film of SXSW was certainly Jordan Peel’s sophomore film, Us. Totally off the wall and insane, Us had the audience on the edge of their seat. Breathtakingly haunting and in a way, surreal, Us is a must-see that will horrify audiences the world over. Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, and Evan Alex bring the Wilsons and the tethered to life, delighting and petrifying you from start to finish.