SXSW Buzz Report: Pee Paparazzi Goes Viral, Joe Swanberg Inspires Walkouts
SXSW is a fest that caters to alterna-sensibilities, so it's no surprise genre fare has done well thus far. Insidious scored high marks with the horror crowd, but The Kill List notched all-out raves from even mainstream press -- though the Conan O'Brien documentary Conan O'Brien Can't Stop contains enough rage and demon-exorcising to give both a run for their money. Meanwhile, Bellflower -- a Sundance entry in the Emerging Visions sidebar -- screens on Monday night, as does the Dance Dance Revolution thriller The FP. Yes, you read that right: a gang warfare film about Dance Dance Revolution. Don't you wish you were in Austin?
Audiences welcomed the mainstream premieres of Paul, Bridesmaids, and Source Code warmly, though it's always difficult to gauge how much of the enthusiasm in the room emanates from the high of festival film-watching or from breathing the same air as celebrities. (Bridesmaids seemed to earn the most surprised and genuine LOLs, for what it's worth. Read Movieline's take on the R-rated summer comedy here.)
By contrast, the Sundance hit The Sound of My Voice also played well, impressing further once filmmakers Zal Batmanglij and Brit Marling revealed the stunning economy of means (read: indie filmmaker hustle) they had to employ just to get the film made. (Stay tuned for Movieline's interview with Marling next Monday.)
Then again, there's plenty of negative buzz on the ground at SXSW, too. The now-infamous Jake Gyllenhaal pee paparazzi incident of 2011 has gone nationwide, though no other illegal celebrity violations have yet been reported. Fights in screenings, yes. And walkouts. Oh, the walkouts.
It was Silver Bullets, the latest from micro-indie icon Joe Swanberg, which garnered the first blast of collective ire from SXSW-goers and critics alike. Premiering Sunday night, the film -- about an actress cast in a werewolf movie, and the existential crises that ensue -- earned some congratulatory tweets but far more numerous (and pointed) negative reactions; Badass Digest's Devin Faraci simply tweeted, "SILVER BULLETS was pure horse sh*t. #SXSW."
But the week is young! There's plenty of time left for discovery, and a Bellflower after-party tonight featuring a live cricket-eating contest. Eat your heart out, breakfast tacos.