KCRW at Sundance Return to KCRW.com

Blue Ruin, Wetlands and “CAPTIVATED The Trials of Pamela Smart”

First Take host Matt Holzman gives us the lowdown on the revenge thriller “Blue Ruin”. He describes it as “a tonal miracle,”as the truly offbeat, funny moments don’t derail the intensity of the story. Matt also praised the film “Wetlands" as "laugh-out loud funny, weirdly affecting and incredibly imaginative."

He reviews the documentary “CAPTIVATED The Trials of Pamela Smart”, about the woman put on trial for convincing her underage lover to kill her husband in 1991.  

Surviving Sundance with Matt Holzman & Sarah Pearce

KCRW Producer Matt Holzman spoke with Sundance Film Festival co-director Sarah Pearce about the survival list that festival management sends to new employees. It’s sort of a field guide to making the most out of this really amazing social and cultural event.

Probably the most helpful advice but otherwise notoriously ignored is, “Wear the right shoes – take your favorite boots to a shoe repair place and have them put hiking boot-type soles on them.”

To read more and see the list, check out the First Take Blog, and to hear their conversation, play the clip here:

Photo credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

KCRW’s Matt Holzman previews Sundance


We asked KCRW Producer Matt Holzman about what film he was most interested in seeing year at the Sundance Film Festival. This is what he had to say:

Matt: I’m really looking forward to “CAPTIVATED: The Trials of Pamela Smart.” This young woman’s journey from private school girl to convicted murderer was all over the news in the early ‘90’s; it was made into a TV movie starring Helen Hunt. But a great documentary - including a look at the news coverage and other media portrayals - may finally do this tragic story, uh, justice. 

Check back for more staff previews as KCRW gets read to cover Sundance!

The Sundance Roller Coaster

As we prepare for this year’s adventures at Sundance, I couldn’t help recall this roller coaster of a journey. I was with Director Richard Shephard every step of the way, as he took his film "The Matador" to the Park City film fest in 2005. 

He’d made three previous indie films and directed some cable TV, but ”The Matador” with stars Pierce Brosnan and Greg Kinnear, was his last, best hope to make it into the big time.  I was with Richard every step of the way.


Harvey Weinstein did not cut “The Matador” and released it later in early 2006 to great warm feelings but only decent box office.  

Richard Shepard has gone on to direct TV pilots for “Criminal Minds,” “Ugly Betty,” “Ringer” and episodes of “Girls” and “30 Rock.”  He’s currently in post-production on his next feature, “Dom Hemingway,” starring Jude Law.