In the realm of cinema, there are a host of films that people put on a “must see” bucket list of sorts, but oftentimes, the indie darlings get lost in the shuffle because their budget was small, and their marketing budget was even smaller. Sure, it’s presumptuous to believe any particular reader wouldn’t have seen any or all of these films, but they’re definitely in a category of forgotten, or undiscovered treasures. Here are 10 wonderful independent films from the contemporary era that you should definitely see!
10. Hard Eight (1996)
Hard Eight is the film that introduced Paul Thomas Anderson to the niche elite of the filmmaking world. After dropping out of NYU film school, because he preferred cutting to the chase, P.T. Anderson began to compile his work in written form, and make some solid connections through the Sundance Institute. His first feature, Hard Eight, was done in conjunction with the Sundance Laboratory, and provided for the first pairing of Anderson, and cinematographer, Robert Elswit. Together they have gone on to make movie magic in films such as Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Punch Drunk Love. But it all started with Hard Eight — which was originally entitled, Sydney.