Best and Worst of the 2012 Sundance Film Festival: 'Beasts of the Southern Wild,' 'Lay the Favorite,' 'The Surrogate'
What to see and avoid when these flicks come your way
Worst: 'Shadow Dancer'
Andrea Riseborough is going to be a star. The talented British actress has made that clear with a number of stellar performances including being the best thing in Madonna's soon to be released "W.E," but her latest endeavor is another unfortunate misfire on her resume. Set in the early 1990's, Riseborough plays a mother pressured by her family into becoming a terrorist for the IRA. When she's caught trying to set off a bomb in the London Underground an agent (Clive Owen) believes he convinces her to switch sides and become an informant. The actors give it their all, but that's wasted with James Marsh's painfully tedious direction. Marsh is an Oscar-winner for his documentary "Man on a Wire" and won critical acclaim for his narrative feature "Red Riding," but "Dancer" is an empty thriller with nothing to say. That's hard to pull off when your subject matter is the conflict in Northern Ireland. Luckily for Riseborough, she'll about to star opposite Tom Cruise in the new Sci-Fi flick from Joseph Kosinski ("Tron: Legacy"). That should get her the attention she deserves.
- Gregory Ellwood