The 2016 Sundance Film Festival wrapped up over the weekend, with The Birth of a Nation snagging the festival's much-coveted Grand Jury Prize as well as the Audience Award. It follows on the heels of previous winners like Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and Whiplash, both of which also won the top two awards. (See a full list of festival winners at the bottom of this post.)

The Birth of a Nation is one of many 2016 Sundance titles that should be on your radar as we kick off another year in independent film. After several days holed up in the mountains of Park City, Utah, we have a few movie recommendations that you need to throw in your personal what-to-watch queue once they have release dates (all are currently TBD).

The movie everyone is talking about

The Birth of a Nation

Release date: TBD 2016

Why you gotta see it: Nate Parker's film about Nat Turner's grisly 48-hour slave rebellion back in the early 1830s is just as powerful and necessary as 12 Years a Slave, and it feels very of-the-moment especially as we approach an Oscar ceremony that could definitely use more diversity among its nominees. The film also scored the biggest deal ever out of Sundance ($17.5 million from Fox Searchlight), lining it up for a major awards campaign later this year, but also securing its spot among the movies we'll continue to discuss for months to come.

 

The movie that'll make you wanna get up and dance

Sing Street

Release date: TBD 2016

Why you gotta see it: Director John Carney has already served up some great music-movies (Once, Begin Again), but Sing Street is his best yet. Featuring terrific '80s-inspired original songs to go with a charming coming-of-age story about a boy who starts a rock band to woo the girl of his dreams, Sing Street was the biggest crowd-pleaser at this year's festival and will no doubt be among the year's best movie soundtracks. Here's one song, "Brown Shoes", performed by the film's stars following its Sundance screening.

 

The weirdest movie you may ever see

Swiss Army Man

Release date: TBD 2016

Why you gotta see it: The film's directors, Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan (aka the Daniels), surprised many when they took home the festival's prestigious Directing Award for U.S. Dramatic Competition — in part due to the fact that their film is most known for featuring Daniel Radcliffe's farting corpse. But Swiss Army Man is about a lot more than a bizarre farting corpse, as Paul Dano plays a man stranded on an island who begins to fall in love with his own isolation… literally. It may be the strangest movie you'll ever watch, but that's exactly what makes it worth watching. Take a chance on Swiss Army Man — trust me, you won't forget the experience.

 

Two documentaries that will blow your mind

Weiner and Tickled

Release date: Both are TBD 2016

Why you gotta see 'em: Weiner, which follows disgraced politician Anthony Weiner's run for New York City mayor, gives us an incredibly awkward inside look at what happens within a political campaign when a scandal breaks. With some of the most intimate access we've ever seen from a political documentary, Weiner triumphs because it reveals the little-seen human side of a politician behind closed doors and away from the media firestorm. 

Meanwhile Tickled, about a New Zealand journalist who uncovers a bizarre tickling competition video, starts off as a quirky adventure to uncover the truth behind a little-known sport only to quickly morph into a dark and disturbing thriller about just how much pain and suffering can be caused through online anonymity. As our journalist learns the truth about these tickling videos, he's thrust into a dangerous cult-like world that doesn't take too kindly to those investigating the truth.

 

The coolest genre movie

Sleight

Release date: TBD 2016

Why you gotta see it: Our favorite genre movie of this year's fest wasn't in the traditional Midnight section, but was instead hiding in the NEXT section. The movie I'm talking about is called Sleight, and it comes from Bad Robot veteran and first-time director J.D. Dillard. If you tossed ChronicleIron Man and, yes, Menace II Society into a blender, you might wind up with something like Sleight — about a young aspiring magician whose loyalty to a menacing drug dealer is tested when he falls for a girl and wants out of the illegal business. 

 

One career-defining performance

Rebecca Hall in Christine

Release date: TBD

Why you gotta see it: Christine was one of two movies based on the life of TV reporter Christine Chubbuck screening at the festival, with the other being a documentary called Kate Plays Christine. Brilliantly portrayed by Rebecca Hall (especially considering how little footage of Chubbuck exists), Christine tracks the tragic real-life story of a TV reporter who committed suicide live on air. We'll let you discover the events that lead up to that fateful day, but nevertheless Hall crushes it with a performance that should instantly thrust her into more lead roles.

 

The best movie to watch with the whole family

Captain Fantastic

Release date: TBD

Why you gotta see it: Viggo Mortensen plays a father of six whose family lives entirely off the grid. When their mother falls ill, the family must return to the grid in a beautiful and sharply written drama about what you do and do not need to raise a family. Granted Captain Fantastic isn't really for the real young ones, but families of preteens on up will find a wickedly entertaining movie that may actually alter the way you look at the world. (Oh, and Viggo Mortensen rocks!) 

 

The most depressingly romantic movie

Lovesong

Release date: TBD

Why you gotta see it: Hey, it ain't Sundance unless there's at least one depressingly romantic movie that's both aww-shucks sweet and painfully heartbreaking. This year (for me, at least) that movie was Lovesong, starring Elvis' granddaughter Riley Keough (in a breakout role) and Jenna Malone as two college friends who dance along that line between good friends and even better lovers. It's sort of a lower-budgeted Carol, except it's not ex-husbands and society getting in the way of their relationship — it's themselves.

 

The likely Oscar contender

Manchester by the Sea

Release date: TBD 2016

Why you gotta see it: Casey Affleck plays a man forced to return to his hometown to take care of his nephew after his brother (Kyle Chandler) dies unexpectedly. While there he’ll also have to confront the heartbreaking demons he left behind years ago. Affleck is tremendous as this tortured blue-collar Boston boy, and while the film’s slice-of-life story about death, family and home is a familiar one, it is so brilliantly executed that it feels incredibly real and honest. Expect awards nominations later this year.

For more on some of the biggest films out of this year's Sundance Film Festival, watch my recent appearance on CBS This Morning, where we break down some of the hottest titles.

More from the 2016 Sundance Film Festival

Watch our interviews with the folks from Yoga Hosers (watch below), The Birth of a Nation, Mr. Pig, Goat and more right here.

Here are all the major award winners from the 2016 Sundance Film Festival:


 
The U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Documentary 
Weiner / U.S.A. (Directors: Josh Kriegman, Elyse Steinberg) — With unrestricted access to Anthony Weiner's New York City mayoral campaign, this film reveals the human story behind the scenes of a high-profile political scandal as it unfolds, and offers an unfiltered look at how much today's politics is driven by an appetite for spectacle.
 
The U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic 
The Birth of a Nation / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Nate Parker) — Set against the antebellum South, this story follows Nat Turner, a literate slave and preacher whose financially strained owner, Samuel Turner, accepts an offer to use Nat’s preaching to subdue unruly slaves. After witnessing countless atrocities against fellow slaves, Nat devises a plan to lead his people to freedom. Cast: Nate Parker, Armie Hammer, Aja Naomi King, Jackie Earle Haley, Gabrielle Union, Mark Boone Jr. 
 
The World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Documentary 
Sonita / Germany, Iran, Switzerland (Director: Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami) — If 18-year-old Sonita had a say, Michael Jackson and Rihanna would be her parents and she'd be a rapper who tells the story of Afghan women and their fate as child brides. She finds out that her family plans to sell her to an unknown husband for $9,000.
 
The World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic 
Sand Storm / Israel (Director and screenwriter: Elite Zexer) — When their entire lives are shattered, two Bedouin women struggle to change the unchangeable rules, each in her own individual way. Cast: Lamis Ammar, Ruba Blal-Asfour, Hitham Omari, Khadija Alakel, Jalal Masrwa. 
 
The Audience Award: U.S. Documentary
Jim: The James Foley Story / U.S.A. (Director: Brian Oakes) — The public execution of American conflict journalist James Foley captured the world’s attention, but he was more than just a man in an orange jumpsuit. Seen through the lens of his close childhood friend, Jim: The James Foley Story moves from adrenaline-fueled front lines and devastated neighborhoods of Syria into the hands of ISIS.
 
The Audience Award: U.S. Dramatic
The Birth of a Nation / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Nate Parker) — Set against the antebellum South, this story follows Nat Turner, a literate slave and preacher whose financially strained owner, Samuel Turner, accepts an offer to use Nat’s preaching to subdue unruly slaves. After witnessing countless atrocities against fellow slaves, Nat devises a plan to lead his people to freedom. Cast: Nate Parker, Armie Hammer, Aja Naomi King, Jackie Earle Haley, Gabrielle Union, Mark Boone Jr. 

The Audience Award: World Cinema Documentary 
Sonita / Germany, Iran, Switzerland (Director: Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami) — If 18-year-old Sonita had a say, Michael Jackson and Rihanna would be her parents and she'd be a rapper who tells the story of Afghan women and their fate as child brides. She finds out that her family plans to sell her to an unknown husband for $9,000.
 
The Audience Award: World Cinema Dramatic 
Between Sea and Land / Colombia (Director: Carlos del Castillo, Screenwriter: Manolo Cruz) — Alberto, who suffers from an illness that binds him into a body that doesn’t obey him, lives with his loving mom, who dedicates her life to him. His sickness impedes him from achieving his greatest dream of knowing the sea, despite one being located just across the street. Cast: Manolo Cruz, Vicky Hernandéz, Viviana Serna, Jorge Cao, Mile Vergara, Javier Sáenz.
 
The Audience Award: NEXT
First Girl I Loved / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Kerem Sanga) — Seventeen-year-old Anne just fell in love with Sasha, the most popular girl at her L.A. public high school. But when Anne tells her best friend, Clifton—who has always harbored a secret crush on her—he does his best to get in the way. Cast: Dylan Gelula, Brianna Hildebrand, Mateo Arias, Jennifer Prediger, Tim Heidecker, Pamela Adlon.
 
The Directing Award: U.S. Documentary 
Roger Ross Williams for his film Life, Animated / U.S.A. (Director: Roger Ross Williams) — Owen Suskind, an autistic boy who could not speak for years, slowly emerged from his isolation by immersing himself in Disney animated movies. Using these films as a roadmap, he reconnects with his loving family and the wider world in this emotional coming-of-age story.
 
The Directing Award: U.S. Dramatic 
Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan for their film Swiss Army Man / U.S.A. (Directors and screenwriters: Daniel Scheinert, Daniel Kwan) — Hank, a hopeless man stranded in the wild, discovers a mysterious dead body. Together the two embark on an epic journey to get home. As Hank realizes the body is the key to his survival, this once-suicidal man is forced to convince a dead body that life is worth living. Cast: Paul Dano, Daniel Radcliffe, Mary Elizabeth Winstead.
 
The Directing Award: World Cinema Documentary 
Michal Marczak for his film All These Sleepless Nights / Poland (Director: Michal Marczak) — What does it mean to be awake in a world that seems satisfied to be asleep? Kris and Michal push their experiences of life and love to a breaking point as they restlessly roam the city streets in search of answers, adrift in the euphoria and uncertainty of youth.
 
The Directing Award: World Cinema Dramatic 
Belgica / Belgium, France, Netherlands (Director: Felix van Groeningen, Screenwriters: Felix van Groeningen, Arne Sierens) — In the midst of Belgium's nightlife scene, two brothers start a bar and get swept up in its success. Cast: Stef Aerts, Tom Vermeir, Charlotte Vandermeersch, Hélène De Vos. 
 
The Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award: U.S. Dramatic 
Chad Hartigan for Morris from America / U.S.A., Germany (Director and screenwriter: Chad Hartigan) — Thirteen-year-old Morris, a hip-hop loving American, moves to Heidelberg, Germany, with his father. In this completely foreign land, he falls in love with a local girl, befriends his German tutor-turned-confidant, and attempts to navigate the unique trials and tribulations of adolescence. Cast: Markees Christmas, Craig Robinson, Carla Juri, Lina Keller, Jakub Gierszal, Levin Henning.
 
U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Editing 
Penny Lane and Thom Stylinski for NUTS! / U.S.A. (Director: Penny Lane) — The mostly true story of Dr. John Romulus Brinkley, an eccentric genius who built an empire with his goat-testicle impotence cure and a million-watt radio station. Animated reenactments, interviews, archival footage, and one seriously unreliable narrator trace his rise from poverty to celebrity and influence in 1920s America.
 
U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for For Social Impact Filmmaking 
Trapped / U.S.A. (Director: Dawn Porter) — American abortion clinics are in a fight for survival. Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers (TRAP) laws are increasingly being passed by states that maintain they ensure women’s safety and health, but as clinics continue to shut their doors, opponents believe the real purpose of these laws is to outlaw abortion.
 
U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Writing 
Kate Plays Christine / U.S.A. (Director: Robert Greene) — This psychological thriller follows actor Kate Lyn Sheil as she prepares to play the role of Christine Chubbuck, a Florida television host who committed suicide on air in 1974. Christine’s tragic death was the inspiration for Network, and the mysteries surrounding her final act haunt Kate and the production.
 
U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Vérité Filmmaking
The Bad Kids / U.S.A. (Directors: Keith Fulton, Lou Pepe) — At a remote Mojave Desert high school, extraordinary educators believe that empathy and life skills, more than academics, give at-risk students command of their own futures. This coming-of-age story watches education combat the crippling effects of poverty in the lives of these so-called "bad kids."
 
U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award 
As You Are / U.S.A. (Director: Miles Joris-Peyrafitte, Screenwriters: Miles Joris-Peyrafitte, Madison Harrison) — As You Are is the telling and retelling of a relationship between three teenagers as it traces the course of their friendship through a construction of disparate memories prompted by a police investigation.Cast: Owen Campbell, Charlie Heaton, Amandla Stenberg, John Scurti, Scott Cohen, Mary Stuart Masterson. 
 
U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Performance 
Joe Seo for Spa Night / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Andrew Ahn) — Los Angeles’s Korean spas serve not only as meeting places but also as a bridge between past and future for generations of immigrant families. Spa Night explores one Korean American family’s dreams and realities as each member struggles with the overlap of personal desire, disillusionment, and sense of tradition. Cast: Joe Seo, Haerry Kim, Youn Ho Cho, Tae Song, Ho Young Chung, Linda Han.
 
U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Individual Performance 
Melanie Lynskey in The Intervention / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Clea DuVall) — A weekend getaway for four couples takes a sharp turn when one of the couples discovers the entire trip was orchestrated to host an intervention on their marriage. Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Cobie Smulders, Alia Shawkat, Clea DuVall, Natasha Lyonne, Ben Schwartz. 
 
U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Individual Performance 
Craig Robinson in Morris from America / U.S.A., Germany (Director and screenwriter: Chad Hartigan) — Thirteen-year-old Morris, a hip-hop loving American, moves to Heidelberg, Germany, with his father. In this completely foreign land, he falls in love with a local girl, befriends his German tutor-turned-confidant, and attempts to navigate the unique trials and tribulations of adolescence. Cast: Markees Christmas, Craig Robinson, Carla Juri, Lina Keller, Jakub Gierszal, Levin Henning.
 
World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Debut Feature
Heidi Brandenburg and Mathew Orzel for their filmWhen Two Worlds Collide / Peru (Directors: Heidi Brandenburg, Mathew Orzel) — An indigenous leader resists the environmental ruin of Amazonian lands by big business. As he is forced into exile and faces 20 years in prison, his quest reveals conflicting visions that shape the fate of the Amazon and the climate future of our world.
 
World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Cinematography

Director and cinematographer Pieter-Jan De Pue for his film The Land of the Enlightened / Belgium (Director: Pieter-Jan De Pue) — A group of Kuchi children in Afghanistan dig out old Soviet mines and sell the explosives to child workers in a lapis lazuli mine. When not dreaming of an Afghanistan after the American withdrawal, Gholam Nasir and his gang control the mountains where caravans are smuggling the blue gemstones.
 
World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Editing 
Mako Kamitsuna and John Maringouin for We Are X / United Kingdom, U.S.A., Japan (Director: Stephen Kijak) — As glam rock's most flamboyant survivors, X Japan ignited a musical revolution in Japan during the late '80s with their melodic metal. Twenty years after their tragic dissolution, X Japan’s leader, Yoshiki, battles with physical and spiritual demons alongside prejudices of the West to bring their music to the world.
 
World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Acting
Vicky Hernandéz and Manolo Cruz in Between Sea and Land / Colombia (Director: Carlos del Castillo, Screenwriter: Manolo Cruz) — Alberto, who suffers from an illness that binds him into a body that doesn’t obey him, lives with his loving mom, who dedicates her life to him. His sickness impedes him from achieving his greatest dream of knowing the sea, despite one being located just across the street. Cast: Manolo Cruz, Vicky Hernandéz, Viviana Serna, Jorge Cao, Mile Vergara, Javier Sáenz.
 
World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Screenwriting
Ana Katz and Inés Bortagaray in Mi Amiga del Parque / Argentina, Uruguay (Director: Ana Katz, Screenwriters: Ana Katz, Inés Bortagaray) — Running away from a bar without paying the bill is just the first adventure for Liz (mother to newborn Nicanor) and Rosa (supposed mother to newborn Clarisa). This budding friendship between nursing mothers starts with the promise of liberation but soon ends up being a dangerous business. Cast: Julieta Zylberberg, Ana Katz, Maricel Álvarez, Mirella Pascual, Malena Figó, Daniel Hendler. 
 
World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Unique Vision and Design

Agnieszka Smoczynska for The Lure / Poland (Director: Agnieszka Smoczynska, Screenwriter: Robert Bolesto) — Two mermaid sisters, who end up performing at a nightclub, face cruel and bloody choices when one of them falls in love with a beautiful young man. Cast: Marta Mazurek, Michalina Olszanska, Jakub Gierszal, Kinga Preis, Andrzej Konopka, Zygmunt Malanowicz.