The 2012 Tribeca Film Festival kicked off last week with the premiere of The Five-Year Engagement before shoveling out a variety of films from around the world. Our veteran team has been devouring films all weekend, and in between darting from theater to theater amidst the eclectic (and very busy) New York City vibe, we asked all of the folks contributing to our Tribeca Film Festival coverage this year to stop for a moment and tell us about their favorite film of the festival so far.
Not all of these films have been picked up for distribution yet, but we've noted the ones that will be coming to theaters. And for more in-depth Tribeca Fest coverage, feel free to hit up our sister site, Movies.com.
Sleepless Night -- Director Frederic Jardin wastes absolutely no time getting into things -- the tension starts from the first frame, and he showcases every inch of the film's nightclub location with gripping camera, sound and lighting work. Tomer Sisley is a bonafide badass, primed with adrenaline and deftly balancing emotional weight with intense physicality. There are hints of Drive and The Raid in this one, and it's currently available on VOD -- so you don't have to be at the Fest to enjoy it! -- Katie Calautti (Now available on VOD)
Rubberneck -- Alex Karpovsky's slow-burn psychosexual thriller about a lab scientist who becomes a little too obsessed with his co-worker following a one-time weekend fling is a devastating yet relatable look at loneliness and how our past sometimes fuels our present in ways we never see coming. One of the things I admire so much about this film is just how uncomfortable it makes you feel to like and root for a character who's damaged and devious. The film definitely taps into those parts of us that find it necessary to slow down and survey a car wreck even though we know the outcome isn't going to be pretty. -- Erik Davis
Supporting Characters -- Part bromance, part ode to '70s comedies like Modern Romance, director Daniel Schechter has a witty sense of humor that's delivered perfectly by leads Alex Karpovsky and Tarik Lowe. Its honest and smart look at relationships and friendship inside the bubble of NYC would work as a perfect double-feature with Lena Dunham's Tiny Furniture (who also makes a cameo in Characters). -- Jason Guerrasio
High Tech, Low Life -- Stephen Maing's High Tech, Low Life examines how Chinese communism is affected by the digital revolution, following two fearless bloggers as they traverse the vast countryside of the world's last frontier to report on stories that the government would rather whitewash. Maing finds two great subjects -- a narcissistic kid seeking web fame, and an older man who tours the landscape on his bicycle -- to explore how information travels around the biggest country on Earth, effectively illustrating how the people of China are using modern technology to circumvent their Republic and connect to each other. It's riveting, urgent, and inspiring stuff. -- David Ehrlich
Your Sister's Sister is a total charmer, packed with amusingly awkward situations further fueled by appealing characters. Duplass, Blunt and DeWitt make for a conflicted, but wildly likable trio, something that facilitates the
Polisse is a stunning drama that reeled me in with tales from the Child Protection Unit in Paris and the officers who work there. Writer/director Maiwenn cleverly cast herself as a photographer documenting the dramas of everyday work in the CPU and the relationships between the officers, so we're allowed a fly-on-the-wall view that makes this film feel more like a documentary than a lurid episode of Law and Order: SVU. The fantastic ensemble cast portray officers than are human -- they screw up, they fight, they celebrate their small victories and mourn the lost cases, and they unravel under the pressure of what they have to bear witness to every day. It's not for the faint of heart, as the crimes they investigate are truly awful, but it's an incredible achievement for everyone involved. -- Jenni Miller (Release Date: May 18, 2012, limited)
Planet of Snail -- Young-Chan is deaf and blind. His wife, Soon-Ho, has a spinal disability. Yet Planet of Snail is not interested in evincing pity, or convincing us to devote our time and money to a medical cause. Director Seung-Jun Yi has instead crafted a quietly thoughtful film that lets us into the lives of this unique couple, offering an intimate portrait of a beautiful relationship. Its naturalistic style is interrupted only by Young-Chan’s writings, poetic glimpses into a silent planet with more depth than we might imagine. -- Daniel Walber (UK Release: June 22, 2012)