First time director Rian Johnson walked away with the 2005 Sundance Special Jury Prize for originality of vision for his film Brick. Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Lukas Haas, it was an attempt to film a noir but with a completely different set of visual cues. Rather than creating a 1940s detective in a rainy New York or Chicago, Johnson set his plot in motion in a modern Southern California high school. In the DVD commentary, Johnson admits that his script was on a knife edge-the slightest misstep in tone would have made it “dreadful.” However, apart from a couple of minor quibbles, I agree with the Sundance jury that he pulled it off.
If you liked it, or if you've clicked around and enjoyed any of the other phenomenal posts out there, please do donate. Here's another shot at the link. The word on the (shadowy, rainy) street is that donations are slowly trickling in. It takes just a few minutes, and if you donate, you can imagine someone growling, "It was you, angel. It was you..."