SXSW in 60 Seconds (collage of images)

Yay! The sun broke through the clouds on Sunday, brightening up the afternoon even as temperatures remained a bit chilly. The day concluded well past midnight with a "work in progress" screening of Sam Raimi's new horror flick, Drag Me to Hell, which drew a huge crowd that started lining up more than two hours in advance. Shortly before that craziness started, a smaller group enjoyed a sneak peek at footage from Sacha Baron Cohen's upcoming comedy Bruno.

Mumblecore Matures? For better or for worse, Andrew Bujalski's Funny Ha Ha in 2002 is cited as the first "mumblecore" movie, a designation that most indie film lovers are probably tired of hearing. In any event, Bujalski's third feature, Beeswax, had its US premiere at the festival this weekend, and Jette Kernion described it as "a good movie that does some surprising things in a quiet way." I was at the same screening and completely agree with her assessment of the film's strengths. My review of the French-language crime thriller Black was also posted; I called it "gloriously lunatic."

More reviews and coverage from the Cinematical crew are on their way, and you can quickly access it all by clicking here.

Blog Talk. Filmmaker Magazine has a very nice section at their site devoted to SXSW coverage; of special interest is Scott Macauley's recent blog post on "fair use" and its effect on documentary filmmakers. Anne Thompson has a great, two-part, on the street interview with Alexander the Last director Joe Swanberg and star Jess Weixler: "Like other actresses at her level, Weixler is being championed by casting directors who recognize how good she is."