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Sundance Film Festival

When did August become Sundance month in theaters (and maybe it shouldn’t be)?

When did August become Sundance month in theaters (and maybe it shouldn’t be)?

Film distributors are a lot like nature and pack rats: They abhor a vacuum.

August used to be the dog days of cinema. It was a hot and distracted time. Many moviegoers were on vacation. Critics too. Why release a movie that has any kind of ambition at such a time?

So the month’s film calendar usually looked something like this: A couple of high-profile studio movies early in the month, which then petered out into some lower-end genre or action movies later. Works of any prestige value, like the kind that come to Sundance, couldn’t be found in abundance.

Then 2017 happened.

This August has been a strange time for so many reasons. Cinema, it turns out, is no...

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