Cedar Rapids

Director: Miguel Arteta
Screenwriters: Phil Johnston

Institute History


Miguel Arteta returns to the Sundance Film Festival with a comedy about a group of insurance salesmen who use the opportunity to attend an annual convention in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, as a way to escape their doleful existence . . . like Vegas but with corn.
Tim Lippe has been living in a small town his whole life and gets a rude awakening when he arrives in the "giant" metropolis of Cedar Rapids. However, his boyish charm and innocence eventually win over his fellow conventioneers, but he becomes disheartened when he uncovers corporate corruption. When it seems his life—and chances to succeed—are completely topsy-turvy, he finds his own unjaded way to turn things around.
Cedar Rapids deftly straddles that line between laughing at and with its subjects thanks to Arteta’s skilled direction and Ed Helms’s hilarious, yet thoughtful, performance. John C. Reilly, Anne Heche, and Isiah Whitlock Jr. play off Helms perfectly to fashion characters that are eccentric, yet honest. Filled with quotable dialogue and unforgettable scenes, Cedar Rapids achieves the impossible: it makes insurance fun.

— Trevor Groth

Screening Details

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