Culture / Film

8 films showing at SXSW 2023 you need to see

SXSW films to watch

It's that time again when film buffs flock to Austin to watch some of the most highly anticipated films at the most coveted of festivals, South by Southwest. SXSW's 2023 lineup includes some of the most exciting talents in independent film. Browse this list to see Tilda Swinton, alongside freshly appointed Oscar nominees like Stephanie Hsu and rapidly rising festival favourites, Rachel Sennott and Meg Stalter do their comedic magic on screen. Read all about the SXSW films to watch below.

1. Bottoms


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We already know this film is one to add to the must-watch list after the SXSW reactions were revealed. Directed by Emma Seligman who positioned herself as a director to watch after her anxiety-inducing and hilarious debut film Shiva Baby, starring Rachel Sennot, who also starred in the film and co-wrote the script for her sophomore film. Bottoms also features Ayo Ederberi who played by far our favourite cook in the kitchen in The Bear.

2. Down Low

Down Low stars Simon Rex, Lukas Gage, and Zachary Quinto in a comedy about a deeply repressed man who meets a twink as they hit the town for a wild night. Happy endings and ruined lives ensue.

3. Americana


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Watch this if you're a fan of comedic heist films, Sydney Sweeney or Halsey (who appears in her first cinematic role). Americana is about heroes and villains trying to find a legendary Native American artifact that's supposed to bring its owner power, fortune and freedom.

4. I Used to be Funny


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This is a film about a struggling stand-up comedian working as an au pair, struggling with PTSD who has to make a decision about whether to join the search for a missing girl she used to Nanny, played by the one and only Rachel Sennot. This feature debut by Ally Pankiw is sure to be bitingly funny with her track record of working on some hit shows like Schitts Creek and Shrill.

5. Joy Ride


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A group of girls on holiday is always a film we can get on board with. Joy Ride features Emily in Paris star, Ashley Park as she struggles to fix her business trip to Asia alongside her group of friends. One of the friends happens to include Oscar nominee Stephanie Hsu as a college pal turned Chinese soap star. We can't wait to see the shenanigans the girlies get up to.

6. Bloody Hell


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The digital cover star for RUSSH's Euphoric issue, Maddie Ziegler stars in what's been described by Nylon as a 'coming-of-age "traumedy"' set in a gynecologist's office. Ziegler plays a 16-year-old who is diagnosed with a reproductive condition that ruins her plans to have sex, her relationship with her mother and the one she has with herself.

7. Cora Bora


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If you've seen Meg Stalter in Hacks,  you know she's going to be hilarious in Cora Bora. In the film, she plays a lost millennial and struggling musician who goes home to Portland, Oregon to try and win her girlfriend back. We'll be anxiously awaiting what she finds out about herself along the way.

8. Problemista


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This film follows El Salvadorean aspiring toy designer Alejandro as he navigates the hellish deluges of the U.S immigration system in order to stay in the country and achieve his dreams. The film is written and directed by Julio Tores who also stars, alongside the sovereign of cinema, Tilda Swinton who plays an erratic art-world outcast. Definitely on our list of SXSW films to watch.

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