In terms of American film festivals, everybody talks about Sundance. Usually, though, those conversations are about celebrity sightings or swag suites — not movies. Real film lovers talk about Telluride, which every Labor Day weekend shows an eccentric slate of high-profile premieres (read: Danny Boyles’s Steve Jobs) as well as under-the-radar docs and features. Of particular interest: films about mountaineering and outdoorsmen (though this is not as much a focus as in years past) and social justice issues.
Here, the five movies you need to know about from this year's fest, plus one piece of important gossip: Danny Boyle, in town for Steve Jobs, confirmed that his next film will be a sequel to Trainspotting starring original leads Ewan McGregor, Jonny Lee Miller, Robert Carlyle and Ewen Bremmer.
The highest of the festival's high-profile premieres, Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs, starring Michael Fassbender and written by Aaron Sorkin, earned raves — like this one from Deadline: "a riveting tale well told ... an action movie driven almost exclusively by words."
In theaters October 9th
In April 2014, Australian documentary filmmaker Jennifer Peedom was working on a film on the Sherpa people when calamity struck: an earthquake that killed 16 people on the slopes of Mount Everest. The resulting film is equal parts tribute and elegy for a community that has quietly formed the heart of Himalayan mountaineering for ages.
Airing on Discovery in 2016
Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom
Evgeny Afineevsky was in the middle of the mayhem when Ukraine erupted into the protests that toppled its government two years ago, and the resulting documentary is, according to The Hollywood Reporter, "an effective piece of agitprop."
Coming to Netflix October 9th
Charlotte Rampling is already earning Oscar talk for her role in this "extraordinary drama of a longtime marriage thrown into crisis on the eve of a 45th wedding anniversary party." Tom Courtenay plays her husband, whose long-ago affair comes to light with the arrival of an unexpected letter.
In theaters December 23rd
Beast of No Nation
Fact: Idris Elba can play anything (including Bond), but he's particularly adept at playing monsters, whether sly and sophisticated (see: Stringer Bell) — or, as in Beasts of No Nation, a smooth sociopath creating an army of child soldiers in an unnamed West African country. Directed by Cary Fukunaga (True Detective's first season, Sin Nombre).
Premiering on Netflix October 16th