Oscar Bait at the Mill Valley Film Fest

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Holly Hunter gets a tribute at the 2017 Mill Valley Film Festival. (Courtesy of Mill Valley Film Festival)

If you want to see movies that are sure to compete for the Oscars, the Mill Valley Valley Film Festival, celebrating its 40th anniversary, is where it’s at the next 10 days. The festival may be small, and kind of pain to get to from anywhere but Marin, but it draws the elite of studio and indie films. The heavy hitters include Wonderstruck, directed by Todd Haynes (Far From Heaven, Carol), Lady Bird, actress Greta Gerwig's directorial debut, and Mudbound, by director Dee Rees (Pariah), a tale about the Jim Crow south after World War II. My Do List co-host John Vanderslice was excited about I, Tonya, about the figure skater Tonya Harding, directed by Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl), and Downsizing, a surreal take on modern problems directed by Alexander Payne (Nebraska, The Descendants). Oh, and there are tributes to Haynes, Marin resident Sean Penn, and (all bow in respect) Holly Hunter. The festival runs Oct. 5–15; details here.