Top 40% of all time (see others with this rank)

Festival Year

2000 (click here to see all competition films from this year)


Dramatic Competition


Dan Futterman, Matt Keeslar, Alan Cumming, Sam Ball, Lothaire Bluteau, Barbara Sukowa

Non-Cast Credits

Jon Shear, Stephanie Golden, J. Todd Harris, Daniel Reitz, Shane S. Kelly, Randolph K. Bricker, Ed Marx


Charlie is a man deeply wounded by a traumatic event. Long suppressed, his memories fester to the surface one day, sending him to the brink of his own destruction. Sadness is an emotion generally linked to stillness, but Urbania is anything but serene. Instead, anger and lust for revenge catalyze Charlie into action.

Jon shear has developed a highly original, complex style of cinematic storytelling. Charlie's quest unfolds as a riddle: nonlinear, demanding the viewer to feel Charlie's frustration. From the onset, you are launched on a journey, but to where? What is real and what is fantasized? Once engaged, you are compelled to see things through to the end. The stunning camera work and precise editing are essential to the success of this type of film. As Charlie Dan Futterman has a sardonic wit born of his smoldering, repressed rage. The tension building in his is palpable. Shear's ingenious device of concealing urban legends in secondary plot lines adds to the surreal nature of the film. It is as if they are there to remind us that some experiences in life are so unbelievable they must be real. Could not urban legends be born of some truth?

In our society, loss can take many forms. You can lose a street to violence, friends to untimely death, spirit to helplessness. Urbania seeks to affirm that sometimes the only path to resurrection is taking back that belongs to you.


John Cooper (see other films reviewed by the same reviewer)

Film Takes Pace.