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21 Sundance Movies You Need To Know About

We saw a looooot of movies at this year's Sundance Film Festival, and these are the ones that you'll be hearing about this year. In no particular order!

1. Dear White People

2. Boyhood

3. The Skeleton Twins

4. Obvious Child

5. The Case Against 8

6. Cold in July

7. Whiplash

8. Camp X-Ray

9. Wish I Was Here

10. Love Is Strange

11. Whitey: United States of America v. James J. Bulger

12. Happy Christmas

Directed by: Joe Swanberg

Written by: Joe Swanberg

Starring: Anna Kendrick, Melanie Lynskey, Mark Webber, Lena Dunham, Joe Swanberg

Happy Christmas is Swanberg's latest improvised feature, and though it's only 78 minutes long, it manages to do a lot of lovely things in a short period of time. It's the story of Anna Kendrick's Jenny, a lost, selfish, funny 27-year-old who has broken up with her boyfriend and moves in with her brother, Jeff (Joe Swanberg); his wife, Kelly (Melanie Lynskey); and their two-year-old son (the adorable Jude Swanberg, the best baby actor I've ever seen). Jenny is invading their happy home, and disrupts it, of course — mostly by showing Kelly, inadvertently, that she should resume her career as a novelist. At that point, the movie's focus shifts slightly to Kelly's point of view, and it's wonderful. Pop culture is currently flush with images of twentysomething women trying to find themselves, but a mother in her thirties who is mostly happy, but not entirely? That's rare. Lynskey steals the movie; wait, Jude Swanberg steals the movie. Forget it! They're all great. I just loved Happy Christmas. —K.A.

Distribution: Magnolia will distribute Happy Christmas theatrically and on VOD, probably in the summer. (If you care, Paramount will release it internationally and on DVD.)

13. Infinitely Polar Bear

14. The Voices

15. Ivory Tower

16. Land Ho!

17. Wetlands

18. The Overnighters

19. The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz

20. Hellion

21. Nymphomaniac Vol. One