A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, Warpaint Close Out NEXT FEST
If Day 3 at Sundance NEXT FEST heralded the vigor of independent film, Sunday’s closing events celebrated the arrival of an assured new female filmmaking voice. Ana Lily Amirpour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night played like the satiating denouement to the four-day festival, transporting audiences to the film’s fictitious Bad City, a home to debauched drug users and other degenerates where a subdued vampire stalks the denizens. However improbable, our vampire “Girl,” stunningly portrayed by Sheila Vand, only changes her ways upon being seduced by a debonair romantic named Arash.
Amirpour, a wonderful presence in her own right, has talked about her decision to make the film anamorphic and black-and-white, explaining that it provokes a “separation from reality.” Indeed, the spacious, shadowy confines of A Girl is among the film’s greatest offerings.
Following the screening, Los Angeles-based indie rock band Warpaint performed for a standing room of moviegoers. The all-female band led a sonically charged set of their unique brand of rock that vacillates between brooding rhythm guitars, meditative synchronized vocals, and upbeat psych rock. Not unlike the previous night’s west coast hip-hop homecoming, Warpaint’s rapport with the local crowd was palpable, as they managed to transform the grand screening room into a communal jam session.
Check out some highlights from yesterday’s happenings, including a screening of The Guest and a conversation with director Nicolas Winding Refn earlier in the day.