In my final roundup of Sundance Film Festival I take on three bold short films, wrapping up this year’s fest with some horror, some comedy, and some punk rock. 

Bye, Bye Bowser (Jasmin Baumgartner)

Bye, Bye Bowser (2024) – source: Sundance

A frolic through a particular punk rock corner, the short film Bye, Bye Bowser, paints a vivid world even in its short run time. Luna (Luna Jordan) watches a construction worker across the street. Though they’ve never met, he inspires a song out of her. This fascination shifts something within her and she feels determined to meet him. 

Beautifully shot in all of its grungy appeal, there’s a sense of loneliness that collects within the catchy tune and vivacious spirit. I dug the vibe and wanted to spend more time inside here.

The final sequences shift the story to a new and unexpected path. It’s a little jarring, but somehow feels right within this narrative. There’s a style that never wavers, and I admire it. 

With Jasmin Baumgartner’s visual finesse and Luna Jordan’s charismatic presence, Bye, Bye Bowser is a banger, a compelling blend of romance, laughter, and reckless abandon.

Dream Creep (Carlos A.F. Lopez)

Dream Creep (2024) – source: Sundance Film Festival

This short film absolutely nails the eerie build up, the shocking turn and an overall discomforting (and might I say) icky atmosphere. 

A bloody good time.

It begins with a couple sleeping, David  (Ian Edlund) wakes up to hear a strange sound, a voice, beckoning him. As he becomes more aware he realizes it’s the voice of Suzy, (Sidney Jaye Hunt) who is fast asleep beside him. But, it’s not coming from her mouth…

Instead, her ear. 

Writer-director Carlos A.F. Lopez doesn’t hold back and each moment builds with tension and curiosity as the mystery intrigues.

Is it psychological? Supernatural? A choice has to be made but if it’s the wrong one, David may be making the biggest mistake of his life.

What occurs is a well-crafted horror that has expert direction and utilizes its short run time by making each moment count. I was glued to my screen for Dream Creep, a fantastic vessel for unique talent. Bravo.

Say Hi After You Die (Kate Hollowell)

Say Hi After You Die (2024) – source: Sundance Film Festival

Where do we go when we pass on? In Say Hi After You Die, absurdity in full tilt, it’s into a porta-potty.

Yes, you read that right.

Writer and director Kate Hollowell plays Gloria, a woman who loses her best friend Ruby (Ruby Caster) in an unexpected accident. Moments before the two had joked about what they’d want to come back as and Ruby, of course, said the portable bathroom.

Be careful what you wish for.

Beneath the excrement and any crude silliness, is a story about the enduring love of friendship. Say Hi After You Die aims to be cheeky, but also sneakingly thoughtful, making the absurdity even more hilarious.

Kate Hollowell brings an exciting and new voice that doesn’t quiet down for anyone. I’m truly excited to see what she does next.

That concludes my coverage of this year’s Sundance Film Festival, thanks for reading!

Does content like this matter to you?

Become a Member and support film journalism. Unlock access to all of Film Inquiry`s great articles. Join a community of like-minded readers who are passionate about cinema – get access to our private members Network, give back to independent filmmakers, and more.

Join now!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.