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The 25 best Sundance Film Festival movies everyone should watch

5. Sex, Lies and Videotape (1989)

The movie: Steven Soderbergh initially feared that his alternative romantic comedy would be too European for the domestic audience. He was proved wrong when the film won the Audience Prize after premiering at Sundance.

After Sundance: The film also won the Palme d'Or at Cannes, made a more than respectable $25 million domestically, and launched Soderbergh along a career path that would lead to Oscar glory.

4. The Usual Suspects (1995)

The movie: Having co-won the Grand Jury Prize for Public Access back in 1992, Bryan Singer returned to Sundance with this twisty-turny crime thriller in which a group of nefarious cons band together after being landed in the same police line-up.

After Sundance: The film made a significant profit on its $6 million budget, with Chris McQuarrie winning an Oscar for his script and Kevin Spacey doing likewise for his turn as the slippery Verbal Kint.

3. Clerks (1994)

The movie: Kevin Smith’s superbly snarky tale of first-job tedium, shot after-hours on a shoestring in the Quick Stop convenience store where he worked.

After Sundance: Filmed for just $27, 575, Clerks went on to gross over $3 million in cinemas, becoming a cult classic and propelling Smith into Hollywood stardom in the process.

2. Memento (2000)

The movie: Christopher Nolan announces himself to Hollywood with this mind-bending thriller, told in brief episodes shown in reverse-chronological order, as Guy Pearce’s brain-damaged hero attempts to piece together his memories in order to avenge an attack on his home.

After Sundance: Having been nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, the film went on to receive widespread critical acclaim, including a couple of Oscar nominations for Original Screenplay and Editing.

1. Reservoir Dogs (1992)

The movie: Quentin Tarantino’s debut picture had already gone down a storm in the UK before it made its bow at Sundance, with American critics equally taken with its combination of pin-sharp dialogue and explosive violence.

After Sundance: The film came to be recognised as one of the finest examples of independent filmmaking, while Tarantino would go on to establish himself as one of the most important filmmakers of the decade.

George was once GamesRadar's resident movie news person, based out of London. He understands that all men must die, but he'd rather not think about it. But now he's working at Stylist Magazine.