From age-gap romances to a homemade Welsh robot: the best of Sundance 2022

From age-gap romances to a homemade Welsh robot: the best of Sundance 2022
Noomi Rapace as a Macedonian witch vies with Cooper Raiff’s latest gem and dapper Bill Nighy in this second virtual edition of the US indie festival

The uncertainties of the pandemic might have skewered plans to host a hybrid festival – it was originally hoped to combine an in-person event in Park City, Utah with an online option – but certain Sundance truths remain inviolable. Key among them is the fact that even without the heady effect of all that mountain air, and despite a selection this year that is unlikely to go down as one for the ages, Sundance buzz remains a powerful force with the potential to propel a small film to big results. This year, however, there is little that has combined crowd-pleasing credentials with critical consensus.

Perhaps the main contender for crossover success is Cha Cha Real Smooth, the second film from American Gen Z wunderkind Cooper Raiff (Shithouse), who wrote,
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