What Alice Found

Director: A. Dean Bell
Screenwriters: A. Dean Bell

Institute History

  • 2003 Sundance Film Festival


Alice seeks salvation from her dreary, small-town existence by attempting, somewhat naively, to reinvent herself from a cashier at the local grocery store into a marine biologist. Plunging into the "rabbit hole" of the open road, she begins the journey from New Hampshire to Florida in her rusted-out Ford Escort. She soon realizes, however, that life on the road ain't all it's cracked up to be.

Car trouble leads her into the "luxurious" RV of Sandra (Judith Ivey) and Bill (Bill Raymond), an older couple living out their remaining days traveling around the good old U.S. of A. Sandra takes Alice in as if she were her own daughter, buying her things, getting her hair done, and fawning over her, and Alice happily accepts this surrogate family. As the highway miles slowly pass, a subtle web is woven where motivations and intentions are captivatingly ambiguous.

Digital storytelling at its very best, What Alice Found marks a fascinating debut by A. Dean Bell, who tells a succinct story with layers that peel away enthrallingly the deeper into the story Alice and the audience go. Exquisite details of wardrobe and production design subtly enhance the phenomenally authentic performances of the cast, notably Emily Grace's unforgettable portrait of Alice.

— Trevor Groth

Screening Details

Sundance Film Festival Awards

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