12 Takeaways From SXSW 2014 - Plus All ScreenAnarchy's Reviews & Features

Editor, Festivals; Los Angeles, California (@RylandAldrich)

Another SXSW has come and gone and the ScreenAnarchy crew is just starting to recover from the exhaustion. We've got links to all our review, interviews, and features, plus some personal takeaways below.

All the fun and great films seem somewhat insignificant when viewed in the light of the tragedy that unfolded early last Thursday morning. Though it was after most of the film crowd had fled the growing music throngs, there is no doubt every attendee was stricken with grief and that sinking feeling that we had walked right near that spot at some point the previous week. Our hearts go out to all of those affected by the tragedy.

13 SINS, A Gruesome Thriller That Starts With A Fly by Peter Martin
AMONG THE LIVING, A Horrifying Case of Boys Will Be Boys by Zach Gayne
BIG IN JAPAN Is A Raucous Adventure In Wacky & Wonderful Tokyo by Alex Koehne
CHEF Cooks Up Profound Retrospect by Zach Gayne
DOC OF THE DEAD Is A Worthwhile History Of The Zombie by John Jarzemsky
HOME, Quiet Horror With a Touch of the Creepy Crazy by Peter Martin
HONEYMOON Is All Parts Scare by Ryland Aldrich
HOUSEBOUND, A Deadpan, Diabolical, Haunted Thriller by Peter Martin
THE INFINITE MAN Is Indie Time Travel Mayhem At Its Best by Ryland Aldrich
LATE PHASES Is A Dollar Short by John Jarzemsky
NEIGHBORS Goes Directly For The Raunch by Peter Martin
OPEN WINDOWS Never Shuts Down Its Thrill Ride by Peter Martin
PREDESTINATION, Poignant And Haunting Time Travel by Peter Martin
PRINT THE LEGEND Is A Fascinating Snapshot Of The Men Behind An Emerging Technology by Ryland Aldrich
SEQUOIA Rises High by Ryland Aldrich
SPACE STATION 76 Is A Retro Future Worthy Of Its Buzz by Zach Gayne
STAGE FRIGHT Sings, Dances, And Slashes Its Way Into Hearts by Peter Martin
STARRY EYES, A Surrealistic Trip Down The Boulevard of Broken Dreams by Zach Gayne
THAT GUY DICK MILLER Shines A Light In The Shadows Of American Cinema by J Hurtado
VERONICA MARS, Older But Still Wisecracking by Peter Martin
WETLANDS Paints An Excitingly Vulgar Picture by J Hurtado
A WOLF AT THE DOOR Huffs, Puffs, and Blows Sweet Love Goodbye by Chase Whale

Twitch Picks 22 Can't Miss Films
Some BAD WORDS, but Mostly Stellar Talent - ScreenAnarchy Talks To Jason Bateman and Kathryn Hahn by Valentina I Valentini
CESAR CHAVEZ Director Diego Luna and Actor Rosario Dawson by Valentina I. Valentini
Talking to CREEP's Mark Duplass And Patrick Brice by Zach Gayne
OPEN WINDOWS' Director Nacho Vigalondo and Stars Sasha Grey & Elijah Wood Talk Privacy Invasion by Zach Gayne
THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE Director Tobe Hooper Talks His Legacy of Unspeakable Horror by Zach Gayne
Twitch Picks Top 10 Movie Posters From The Fest by Alex Koehne

Peter Martin, Valentina I. Valentini, John Jarzemsky and Zach Gayne contributed to this story.

All this awesomeness comes at a cost

SXSW is one of the most exciting, interesting, and innovative festivals on earth, but that comes at the expense of the film festival exhibition. I want to stress that I don't mean to take anything away from the extremely hard working programmers. They put together an excellently programmed and huge festival with a tiny staff and deserve all the credit in the world. However, between Interactive, Music, Episodic, Sports, speakers, sessions, a trade show, and numerous corporate booze-fueled parties, the film festival can sometime feel like a bit of an afterthought.

This year I saw fewer films in the theater and checked out more of what the rest of the fest had to offer. I attended some great panels and had an amazing amount of fun. This was possible because online screeners of the films were so readily available. As a member of the press, this is awesome. But when I put on my filmmaker hat, it also worries me. Any filmmaker will prefer their hard work be seen in a packed theater. But the reason that screeners are more and more available is that they have to be. With long lines, no press and industry screenings, and so many distractions, screeners are the only way to guarantee press and buyers will watch any but the biggest films of the fest.

This is by no means a rant against online screeners (I love 'em, keep 'em coming). But it is easy to see the festival evolving into a place where press and industry come to see friends, speak on panels, and party -- but wait to watch the movies while in the comfort of their own homes. -Ryland Aldrich

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