Institute History

  • 2021 Sundance Film Festival


When Marian is on the run, she goes to the only place she knows is safe: her childhood home. She is greeted by her estranged sister, Vivian, a stay-at-home housewife struggling to conceive and on the verge of a failing marriage. Though the two are identical twins, they live opposite lives. Marian’s mysterious return disrupts Vivian’s small-town routine, and the sisters must learn to reconnect and reconcile. When Marian's haunting past finally catches up to her, their separate worlds collide, catapulting both sisters into grave danger.

Returning to the Sundance Film Festival with her feature debut—a continuation of her 2015 short, Superior—director Erin Vassilopoulos works with the same sister actresses (Alessandra and Ani Mesa) to further her exploration of identity. Superior is a visually luscious thriller that keeps the tension tight as the narrative navigates between violent memories and two sisters rediscovering their bond. From the music to the set design, every detail oozes style and intention—and heralds the undeniable arrival of a new voice in American independent cinema.

— D.B.

Screening Details

As you use our Online Archives, please understand that the information presented from Festivals, Labs, and other activities is taken directly from official publications from each year. While this information is limited and doesn't necessarily represent the full list of participants (e.g. actors and crew), it is the list given to us by the main film/play/project contact at the time, based on the space restrictions of our publications. Each entry in the Online Archives is meant as a historical record of a particular film, play, or project at the time of its involvement with Sundance Institute. For this reason, we can only amend an entry if a name is misspelled, or if the entry does not correctly reflect the original publication. If you have questions or comments, please email [email protected]