Since its initiation in 2002, Tribeca Film Festival has been celebrating independent shorts, family-friendly films and incredible documentaries. The festival, which takes place in Lower Manhattan, is known for bringing to light a number of worthy lower-budget films year after year, and the selection is always artistic and enthralling. The 2014 Tribeca Film Festival introduced a number of groundbreaking films, and the following productions are well worth watching.
Comedy actor Jon Favreau writes, directs and stars in this hilarious film about a chef who is forced to restart his culinary career and move it to a food truck after angering his boss. Although things seem like they are going downhill, the new business gets Favreau’s character to reconnect with his drifting family. This film offers plenty of laughs, and it stars big-screen Hollywood actors like Robert Downey Jr., Dustin Hoffman, Sofia Vergara and several others.
“Regarding Susan Sontag”
This enthralling documentary about the life and works of writer and intellectual Susan Sontag is surprisingly entertaining. Throughout the film, audiences get a glimpse of Sontag’s personal life, including her lesbian relationship when homosexuality was widely frowned upon. Viewers also get to explore the most important points of her career and hear readings of some of her best work.
The story of two old men embarking on a life-changing adventure together may seem like a tired plot, but this engaging film about former brothers-in-law on a road trip through Iceland is completely fresh thanks to directors Aaron Katz and Martha Stephens. The plot is charming, but the chemistry between actors Paul Eenhoorn and Earl Lynn Nelson is what truly makes this film worth watching.
This quiet documentary follows Justin Peck, a member of the New York City Ballet who is asked to create the only original ballet of the season. Filmmakers detail every moment of Peck’s immaculate work and mounting anxiety, shedding light on the incredible amount of time and work that goes into creating a ballet.
“Love Is Strange”
This emotional film follows the characters of John Lithgow and Alfred Molina, long-time gay partners who finally get married. However, when Molina’s employer finds out about the marriage, he is soon fired. The two lovers must go separate ways to make ends meet until they can eventually reunite. This tragic tale is sure to tug on the heartstrings of audiences everywhere.
“The Newburgh Sting”
Government conspiracy documentaries may be commonplace, but this revealing film uncovers an instance of power abuse by law enforcement grounded in hard facts. Hidden-camera footage and eyewitnesses help to tell the tale of how law enforcement officials made up the 2009 supposed terrorist plot by American Muslims to bomb Jewish centers in New York.
This film written by, and starring, James Franco is based on the actor’s own collection of short stories. Franco’s character is a high school soccer coach who falls in love with one of his players, portrayed by Emma Roberts. The intriguing film is directed by Gia Coppola.
“Dior and I”
This fashion documentary, which tells the story of the Dior brand while revealing little-known aspects of the fashion industry, is one of the best of its kind in recent years. Frederic Tcheng includes every detail needed to make this film fantastic, including voice-over readings of Dior’s thoughts and archival recordings of the legendary designer.
In this intense and dramatic production, a troubled teenager is moved to an adult prison despite his age, and it is the same prison where his father is also incarcerated. Up-and-coming British actor Jack O’Connell gives an astounding performance in this film; audiences may want to keep an eye on the career of this blossoming actor.
“Love and Engineering”
Directed by Tonislav Hristov, this unique documentary follows a group of engineers who attempt to find love using scientific methods so they can study the phenomenon. The premise sounds comedic, but the resulting production is a true exploration into the science of love as audiences continuously ask themselves one question. Can love ever truly be measured by scientific means? The revelations of this documentary make it a film to watch.
The 2014 Tribeca Film Festival brought a number of great productions to light, from breathtaking documentaries to enthralling love stories and even comedies. Although some of these films feature big Hollywood celebrities, others are the breakout roles for future stars of the cinema. Whatever preferences they may have, cinephiles are sure to enjoy this selection of 10 high-quality films from the legendary Tribeca Film Festival.