It’s no secret that A24 has released some stellar films since its founding in 2012. From “Hereditary” to “Moonlight,“ “Eighth Grade” to “Lady Bird,“ new releases like “Gloria Bell” and “The Farewell,“ and so many in between, A24 has been captivating audiences and critics alike. As far as distribution companies go, they’re on the newer side, but they have backed some of the most notable and thought-provoking films of the last several years. As a testament to their cultural power, they even have the best merchandise in the film distribution game. They offer up simple (and often sold-out) hype-beast tees, hats, art prints, zines, socks and even candles. A tee with the famous treehouse scene from “Hereditary” could have been yours–if you acted quickly enough. Let’s have a look back at a few early films that have helped make A24 an icon among cinephiles.
The Early Years
“The Bling Ring,” directed by Sofia Coppola
This 2013 film with an ensemble cast of Emma Watson, Katie Chang, Israel Broussard, and Taissa Farmiga. It’s an atmospheric and beguiling take on the real-life Hollywood Hills burglaries, which were led by one-time reality stars and other teens near Calabasas. Watson, in particular, delivered a stand-out performance as Nicki Moore, with a memorable deadpan. Watching the film now is also interesting in that it feels like a time capsule of 2009 when Paris Hilton ruled the world and the cool kids wore oversized sunglasses.
“Obvious Child,” directed by Gillian Robespierre
Donna Stern (Jenny Slate), an aspiring comic, gets dumped by her boyfriend in the most awful way: while she’s in the bathroom at her comedy club. She feels like she’s floundering. Soon, however, she meets a grad student (Jake Lacy) after a set and they end up hitting it off. After a drunken hookup, Donna finds out that she’s pregnant. Touching, witty, this 2014 film is expertly cast with Slate and Lacy in the leads. “Obvious Child” is a dark comedy with superb writing and performances.
“The End of the Tour,” directed by James Ponsoldt
Framed around conversations between journalist David Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg) and David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel), as Lipsky is interviewing David Foster Wallace after the publication of Infinite Jest, this 2015 film is nuanced and riveting.