A perq of living in Salt Lake City is that some cool stuff happens here. Things other people consider international events are local for me. One such event is Sunstone; another is the Sundance Film Festival, the largest venue in the world for independent films. The 2011 Festival is happening right now.
OK, most of the really cool stuff happens up at the Sundance Institute, in/near Park City, about an hour up into the mountains to the east of SLC. But there are still screenings in theaters in SLC.
My first January here, 2009, I was mostly annoyed by Sundance, because it meant I got really bad service at my favorite tea house. My second January, I actually paid attention to Sundance; I really wanted to see 8:The Mormon Proposition, but I was denied.
However, one of my friends picked up tickets to two other films, and offered me a ticket to whichever one I wanted to see most. I wisely chose the one that actually had a narrative, and it turned out to be The Kids Are All Right. So I can say that I saw an Academy Award nominee for Best Picture back before it had a distributor, which is, if not exactly an accomplishment that says anything about me except that I'm lucky to have a friend with good taste and a generous nature, still cool.
Yesterday evening this same friend called to say that he'd scored tickets to a screening in SLC; did I want to go? He didn't even manage to tell me what the movie was before I said yes.