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Sean P. Means: What’s looking good at Sundance? Here are 10 educated guesses
Rocker and icon Nick Cave is the subject of "20,000 Days on Earth," one of the World Cinema Documentary competition entries in the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Courtesy Sundance Institute
A talented drummer (Miles Teller, left) is tormented by his jazz-band instructor (J.K. Simmons) in the drama "Whiplash," one of the U.S. Dramatic competition entries at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Courtesy Sundance Institute
Artist Doug Aitken's "The Source (evolving)," a site-specific series of filmed interviews about creativity with a variety of people (such as rocker Jack White, center), shown here at the Tate Liverpool. The work will have its U.S. debut at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, in a pavilion to be built near Park City's Main Street. Courtesy Sundance Institute
A film still from "Happy Valley."
Courtesy Asylum Entertainment  |  Sundance Institute
Erinn Hayes, Michael Cera and James Adomian in "Hits."
Courtesy Sabrina Lantos  |  Sundance Institute

A bat-wielding assassin (Very Tri Yulisman) is one of the new villains in "The Raid 2." Sony Pictures Classics
Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan in "The Trip to Italy."
Courtesy Sundance Institute
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“Whiplash” » Damien Chazelle’s short film of the same name was intense, a diamond-hard scene between a hopeful drummer and a ruthless instructor in a high-school jazz band. I’m curious to see how Chazelle has expanded the short into feature length, and I’m thrilled that he retained the great character actor J.K. Simmons to play the bandleader. (U.S. Dramatic competition.)

Sean P. Means writes The Cricket in daily blog form at www.sltrib.com/blogs/moviecricket. Follow him on Twitter @moviecricket, or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/seanpmeans. Email him at spmeans@sltrib.com.

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