Sundance Film Festival Films Tackle Faith


One notable trend amongst the films in this year’s Sundance Film Festival: faith.

The Los Angeles Times’ John Horn writes:

Among the roughly 120 features playing at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, a surprisingly large number use faith — and specifically Christianity — as either a critical narrative fulcrum or a key expositional backdrop. And the dramas do not always take a neutral stance.

Kevin Smith’s gothic horror story RED STATE targets a violently homophobic pastor modeled on the real-life, gay-bashing Baptist Fred Phelps. George Ratliff’s dark comedy SALVATION BOULEVARD casts Pierce Brosnan as the charismatic head of a mega-church (he’s loosely patterned after Australia’s Brian Houston) who’s hardly practicing what he preaches. And Irish actor Paddy Considine’s TYRANNOSAUR explores the futility of faith through the relationship between an embittered older man (Peter Mullan) and a woman working in charity thrift shop.

Yet two other features — Vera Farmiga’s HIGHER GROUND and Matthew Chapman’s THE LEDGE — are not interested in using spirituality for satire or shock, instead looking at religion for a deeper dramatic purpose.

Horn takes a look at some of these films here.

Be sure to satisfy all your festival needs with the latest buzz, top stories, and celebrity interviews from Sundance Channel’s coverage of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival.