AWARDS

BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE: 

Sonoma Int’l Film Festival, Amsterdam Film Festival, Shining Light Film Festival, Omaha Int’l Film Festival (Hon. Men.), Landlocked Film Festival (Hon. Men.)

AUDIENCE CHOICE:

Sonoma Int’l Film Festival, Palm Beach Int’l Film Festival, Idyllwild CinemaFest, Big Bear Lake Int’l Film Festival

OFFICIAL SELECTION: 

Heartland Film Festival, SOHO Int’l Film Festival, Carmel Art and Film Festival, Indianapolis Int’l Film Festival, Waterfront Film Festival, Prescott Film Festival, Cinema Falls Film Series, Greenville Film Festival, Crossroads Film Festival, Oulu Children’s and Youth Film Festival

REVIEWS

"Writer director Nikki Braendlin has really created an emotional powerhouse of a story...The characters are delightful, the performances each a caliber not seen very often in “lower budget” films. And when you watch the extras, which you must, you discover 17 days and capelinni noodle-like budgets can still a masterpiece make. That is because these gals – all the leads are women – are exquisite. Laurel Porter is going to break your heart, and both Fogarty and McNeil will be etched into your spirit; they are so real." (Emily Blunt)

Full review: http://www.bluntreview.com/reviews/highassky.htm

 

"Braendlin's deft approach means we can really sense the pain the other characters' untidiness inflicts. It's hard to believe this is her feature film debut." (Jennie Kermode)

Full review: http://www.eyeforfilm.co.uk/review/as-high-as-the-sky-2013-film-review-by-jennie-kermode

 

"Fogarty is also known for being a very successful commercial actress and talented improviser, so her moving dramatic performance in this gripping drama was especially amazing to watch. McNeil is great as the hippie sister and her performance is reminiscent of Catherine Keener. Porter is also memorable in her role and it’s nice to see how an actress so young can have so many emotions and such a well structured and developed character arc, something not really seen in most films today. The way these actresses interact with each other truly makes the viewer feel like they’re a part of this story and leaves one very affected." (Vida Ghaffari)

Full review: http://thehollywoodtimes.net/2014/06/18/cast-members-talents-are-as-high-as-the-sky/

 

"As I said, it's tempting to say that As High As the Sky is a beautiful film that finds its success in its simplicity, but that isn't quite right. As High As the Sky is a beautiful film that finds its success in its lack of clutter, and its focus on what makes a good story a great film." (Michael Nazarewycz)

Full review: http://www.dvdverdict.com/reviews/ashighasthesky.php

 

"A wonderful mix of textures and tones from Caroline Fogarty—even managing a first-rate mechanical doll impersonation." (Jason Wegg)

Full review: http://www.jamesweggreview.org/Articles.aspx?ID=1755

 

"The three earnest, empathetic central performances carry the film.  Laurel Porter as Hannah is unstudied and wry without being irritating or overly precocious.  Fogarty and McNeill offer a crisp, unfussy portrait of sisters growing towards warmth and understanding, a gradual intimacy between women seldom seen in films.  In fact, the only male character here is Margaret’s ex-boyfriend, who’s represented in a photograph and never seen on screen." (The Feminist Spectator)

Full review: http://www.thefeministspectator.com/2014/05/25/as-high-as-the-sky/

 

"Much of the humor and beauty in As High as the Sky is due to Tarin Anderson’s expert cinematography. Margaret’s home, where the entire film takes place, is awash in a bright but forgiving light, touches of orange highlighting her décor and wardrobe. It’s a somewhat ironic color considering Margaret’s lack of either fun or spark, but also, not coincidentally, it’s a color that almost exactly matches the tone of her own hair. It doesn’t take a psychoanalyst to know that when she’s searching for perfection in her home, she’s searching for perfection in herself." (She Blogged by Night)

Full review: http://shebloggedbynight.com/2014/as-high-as-the-sky-2012/

"The performances are uniformly terrific and there's an exhilaration evident in the filmmaking. They've really pulled something off, I think watching it, and that ain't easy.” (Anath White, rogerebert.com)

Full review: http://www.rogerebert.com/festivals-and-awards/seduced-by-sonoma

 

“[Braendlin] has a keen, clean eye for composing shots and uses Margaret’s architecturally severe house to great effect. It calls to mind director Tom Ford’s use of clothing and decor in the precise A Single Man (2009). As High as the Sky probably didn’t have a big budget but it looks like $10 million bucks on the screen.” (Mark Hinson, Tallahassee Democrat)

 Full review: http://www.tallahassee.com/story/entertainment/movies/2014/05/08/tallahassee-director-reaches-sky/8842047/

 

“This first feature from writer/director Nikki Braendlin is a strikingly intimate study in visual character definition and painful emotional growth." (Madelyn Ritrosky)

Full review: http://emol.org/film/archives/heartlandfilmfestival/2014/ashighasthesky/index.html

 

"This lovely, spare, eccentric low-budget comedy-drama, which is obviously a labor of love for writer-director Nikki Braendlin, has a foreign-film vibe in the story of two sisters reconnecting after spending too much time apart." (Chris Hicks)

Full review: http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865603744/6Monuments-Men7-6Lone-Survivor7-lead-new-movies-on-home-video.html

 

"The majority of the crew, from writer/director Nikki Braendlin on down, are women too. This collective feminist spirit is not simply a press note, however, but the film's excellently rendered rallying cry." (Cinema Romantico)

Full review: http://cinemaromantico.blogspot.com/2014/05/as-high-as-sky.html

 

"Nikki Braendlin is an actress making the leap to independent film writer-director and it shows in her gentle affection for her cast and the quirky, performer-friendly characters she creates. This tale of two sisters who are classic opposites may or may not be based on Braendlin and her sibling, but it feels like it is, which goes a long way toward drawing us into her story…Braendlin is a burgeoning filmmaker worth keeping an eye on." (Hap Erstein, The Palm Beach Post)


"Writer/director Nikki Braendlin’s As High as the Sky is a micro-budgeted indie that probably cost the equivalent of five seconds worth of visual effects in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. I’m pretty sure I know which was money better spent… with its lovely naturalism, arresting color schemes, and excellent performances by the three leads – with McNeil suggesting the hippie earthiness of the great Catherine Keener – As High as the Sky is a continual, 90-minute delight, and Braendlin directs her cast’s scenes of wordless rapport with exceptional subtlety and clarity. Her scenes of word-filled rapport are nothing to sniff at, either. (Mike Schultz, River Cities Reader)

 “Technically this movie is cleanly shot, in a fantastic parallel to Margaret’s affliction.  All the camera work is even, sharp, and focused.  Fogarty is as riveting physically as she is emotionally, moving deliberately, even bringing her water tumbler to her mouth with purpose.  She folds and stretches her limbs with an objective in mind.  It’s truly fascinating to watch.” ( Leah Gehlsen Morlan, Landlocked Film Festival)


Surprisingly, this is Nikki Braendlin's first film. Shot mostly within Fogarty's actual home, this film features beautiful cinematography and European style editing (she gives it room to breathe). The acting is superb. Fogarty, known for her quirky roles, pulls off her awkwardness and subsequent breakdown with finesse. Bonnie McNeil is very natural. Her role fits her like a glove. Another surprise is that this was Porter's first role. She believably pulls off unspoken emotion in a subtle way unseen in many child actors.” (Rachel Galvin, independentstreak.com)


“When I first screened this film I knew it would be a favorite with our audience, and I was right! People loved this film ‐ so much so they kept asking us to schedule another screening. AS HIGH AS THE SKY is a heartwarming film that is guaranteed to make you laugh and cry.” (Erin Clark, Carmel Art and Film Festival)

 

"A life-affirming film about the complexity of family relationships, AS HIGH AS THE SKY is deceptively simple, sneaking up on you scene by scene. The film is as minimalist as its setting, and in the end, less truly is more. You know you've programmed a gem when audience members can't leave the theater without saying 'thank you'." (Julie Anderson Friesen, Cinema Falls Film Series)


"Nikki Braendlin has firmly planted her flag in the world of strong indie filmmaking with this special movie. AS HIGH AS THE SKY is as charming as it is moving, and the writing and performances will leave you talking for days. A wonderful film." (Stephen Savage, Idyllwild CinemaFest)