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Comedy written and directed by Todd Solondz which follows a loveable Dachshund as it travels around the country, changing the lives of a number of very different owners along the way. After setting off on a road trip with veterinary assistant Dawn Wiener (Greta Gerwig), the dog then encounters young cancer survivor Remi (Keaton Nigel Cooke), failing film professor Dave Schmerz (Danny DeVito) and troubled grandmother Nana (Ellen Burstyn).
Writer-director Todd Solondz presents two tales about cruelty, deception, storytelling, and other people's suffering. In the first, entitled 'Fiction', a student on a creative writing course enters an abusive affair with her professor. The second, 'Nonfiction', concerns a filmmaker working on a documentary about a high school student and his family.
Collection of American independent films. The Oscar-nominated drama 'Half Nelson' (2006) follows the story of an inner-city teacher's friendship with a pupil. Dan Dunne (Ryan Gosling) is a young teacher struggling to find the energy to inspire his teenage students as they examine everything from civil rights to the Civil War. Rejecting the standard curriculum in favour of an edgier approach, Dan teaches his students how to think for themselves. Though Dan is brilliant, dynamic, and in control in the classroom, he spends his time outside school on the edge of consciousness. His disappointments and disillusionment have led to a serious drug habit. He juggles hangovers and homework, keeping his lives separated, until one of his troubled students, Drey (Shareeka Epps), catches him getting high after school. From this awkward beginning, Dan and Drey stumble into an unexpected friendship. Husband-and-wife team Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck direct 'Sugar' (2008), a drama following young, up-and-coming Dominican baseball player Miguel 'Sugar' Santos (Algenis Perez Soto) as he progresses from training camps in his homeland to play for a Minor League club in Iowa. There, he finds himself lodging with an elderly couple and trying out his moves as starting pitcher in front of a demanding crowd. Off the field, he hangs out with his fellow Spanish-speaking ballplayers, befriends a former college star and conducts a tentative flirtation with Anne (Ellary Porterfield), the innocent, churchgoing granddaughter of his hosts. Todd Solondz writes and directs 'Dark Horse' (2011), a bittersweet dark comedy drama charting the dysfunctional romance that unfolds between two 30-something misfits. Abe (Jordan Gelber), a balding, chronically dissatisfied 'kidult' who works for his father (Christopher Walken), is spoiled rotten by his doting mother (Mia Farrow) and spends his free time indulging his passion for collecting toys. When he meets Miranda (Selma Blair), a failed writer going through post break-up depression, the two gradually enter into an unstable relationship with a habit of going off at some unexpected and bizarre tangents. 'Ballast' (2008) is a drama written and directed by Lance Hammer, set in the Mississippi Delta. After her ex-husband's suicide, impoverished single mother Marlee (Tara Riggs) is struggling to deal with the wayward behaviour of her teenage son, James (JimMyron Ross). Meanwhile, Marlee's ex-brother-in-law, convenience store owner Lawrence (Micheal J. Smith Sr), is thrown into a paralysis of grief and despair by his brother's suicide. As tension builds between the bereaved trio, they must find a way to deal with their pain and move towards some kind of reconciliation. John Sayles directs 'Honeydripper' (2007), a Deep South roadhouse drama starring Danny Glover. In the backwaters of Alabama, owner of the 'Honeydripper Lounge' Tyrone 'Pine Top' Purvis (Glover), faces financial ruin if he can't lure more customers away from his rival across the street. Hitting on a scheme to hire six string legend Guitar Sam for one make or break night, all bodes well until the day the train arrives and Magic Sam isn't on it due to his being taken ill. In desperation, Tyrone bails out young migrant guitarist Sonny (Gary Clark Jr) for one last throw of the dice. But can the kid really cut it and save the day?
Controversial coming-of-age drama from director Todd Solondz. After attending her cousin's funeral, 13-year-old Aviva (played by eight different actors over the course of the story) determines to have as many children as possible, outraging her conservative parents Joyce (Ellen Barkin) and Steve (Richard Masur). Getting pregnant in one random encouter, Aviva is forced into having an abortion that leaves her sterile. Running away from home, she finds herself in the company of a strange, fanatically anti-abortion religious group planning to murder a doctor.
Grand Jury Prizewinner, 1996 Sundance Film Festival
Winner by unanimous vote of the International Critics Prize at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival, Todd Solondz's Happiness paints a broad portrait of contemporary suburbia and the demons that haunt it.
At its center are three sisters -- Joy, Trish, and Helen -- and the men in their lives: an unreliable boyfriend, a husband who is a therapist, and an anonymous starker, who turns out to be a neighbor. The most troubled of the men may be Bill, the therapist who is also Trish's husband, as he struggles with his desires for his son Billy's pubescent classmates. When the police begin to close in, everyone's lives -- and everyone's relationships -- are changed forever.
In Storytelling, as in his earlier screenplays, Solondz peers into the underside of American suburban life with sometimes shocking and sometimes hilarious results. The film is in two parts. "Fiction" deals with the relationship between students and their black teacher in a college creative writing class while hammering away in decidedly non-PC fashion at the most sensitive social and political concerns of our time: race, sex, prejudice against the disabled. "Nonfiction" follows the attempts of an underachieving documentary filmmaker to capture the day-to-day life of an underachieving high-school student and his family—with surprisingly horrifying results. As captivating as it is controversial, this film (which stars John Goodman and Julie Hagerty as the parents in the second part of the movie) caused something of a sensation when it was shown at the Cannes Film Festival in 2001.
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