Eight South by Southwest feature films with ties to Texas


Every year at South by Southwest, there is a mess of films with Austin and Texas ties. Here are eight worth keeping an eye on.

“Support the Girls.” Austin director Andrew Bujalski’s new one concerns the general manager at a highway-side “breastaurant” who has her incurable optimism and faith tested over the course of a long, strange day. With Regina Hall, Haley Lu Richardson, Shayna McHayle and James LeGros. (9 p.m. March 9, Zach Theatre; 2 p.m. March 11, Rollins Theatre at the Long Center; 7 p.m. March 16, Alamo Ritz 1; 11:30 a.m. March 17, Alamo Lamar B)

“1985.” Malaysia-born, Austin-based director Yen Tan delivers the story of Adrian (Cory Michael Smith of “Gotham” fame), a closeted young man returning to his Texas hometown for Christmas during the first wave of the AIDS crisis. (6:30 p.m. March 9, Zach; 6:30 p.m. March 10, AFS Cinema; 7:15 p.m. March 13, Rollins; 9 p.m. March 15, Stateside Theatre)

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“Damsel.” The Austin-based Zellner Brothers’ new comedy-Western (written, directed and produced by them) was shot in Utah, stars Robert Pattinson and Mia Wasikowska, features a score from Austin outfit the Octopus Project and concerns an affluent pioneer who heads West to marry the love of his life. (11 a.m. March 12, Zach; 2:30 p.m. March 13, Paramount Theatre; 11:30 a.m. March 16, Zach; 11:30 a.m. March 17, AFS)

“Friday’s Child.” Texas actor Tye Sheridan stars in A.J. Edwards’ crime drama about an 18-year-old, just out of foster care, who becomes the prime suspect in a botched robbery. With Imogen Poots, Caleb Landry Jones, Jeffrey Wright and Brett Butler. (7:45 p.m. March 11, Stateside; 8:15 p.m. March 13, Alamo Lamar B; 11:15 a.m. March 14, Alamo Lamar C.)

“Never Goin’ Back.” Dallas filmmaker Augustine Frizzell’s debut feature — about Jessie and Angela, high school dropouts whose lives might be falling apart but who are taking a week off to chill at the beach — was the recipient of an AFS grant in 2014 and was workshopped at the AFS Artist Intensive in 2016. (4:15 p.m. March 10, Alamo Lamar A; 1:15 p.m. March 11; AFS; 4:45 p.m. March 13, Zach; 2 p.m. March 16; Alamo Lamar A)

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“Blood Fest.” Austin polymath Owen Egerton’s new horror picture, shot in town, concerns a horror film festival that goes very, very wrong. As attendees start dying off, three teenagers with more horror film wits than real-world knowledge must band together. (11:55 p.m. March 9, Stateside; 11:55 p.m. March 10, Alamo Lamar D; 8:45 p.m. March 16, AFS)

“Blaze.” Well, this one is a bit of a cheat seeing as how Austin native (but Los Angeles resident) Ethan Hawke shot this largely Austin-set tale in Louisiana and Mississippi. But it also concerns increasingly legendary Austin songwriter Blaze Foley and features a rumored-to-be-excellent performance by Charlie Sexton as Townes Van Zandt. (6 p.m. March 16, Paramount; 2:30 p.m. March 17, AFS)

“Thunder Road.” Shot entirely in Austin, Los Angeles actor/director Jim Cummings’ feature, about a cop who raises his daughter as a love letter to his late mother, is based on his Sundance Grand Jury Award-winning short film of the same name — a 12-minute, shot-in-one-take movie that has been called one of the best short films ever made. (4:30 p.m. March 12, Stateside; 12:30 p.m. March 13, Alamo Lamar D; 9:45 p.m. March 16, Alamo Lamar B)



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