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Home New Release Man From Reno
27 Mar 2015
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Man From Reno

Man from Reno
Director : Dave Boyle
Genre : Thriller
Producer : Ko Mori
Writer : Dave Boyle
Music Director : Dave Boyle
Releasing On : 27 March 2015
Rating: 0 (0 Ratings)
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The unease at the heart of "Man from Reno" is expressed via two different, initially separate, narrative threads. In one, burnt-out mystery novelist Aki absconds to San Francisco to escape the doldrums of a press tour, causing a flood of media speculation in her native Japan; in the other, a sheriff from elsewhere in the Bay Area runs over (and nearly kills) an unidentified Japanese man who’d abandoned his vehicle earlier that foggy night. Shortly after checking himself out of the hospital, the mysterious victim is found face-down in a pond.

That these two plot lines are connected is a certainty, yet the how and why of it all remain clouded for quite some time. Even if you think you’ve figured out the identity of the eponymous Nevadan early on, the suspicion that this case is littered with misdirection and outright lies grows from scene to scene. Co-writer/director Dave Boyle keeps that fuse burning slowly but brightly; when Aki (Ayako Fujitani) and Sheriff Del Moral (Pepe Serna) finally meet an hour in, it feels like their stories couldn’t have merged at any other point.

A bilingual genre two-hander in search of common ground between Haruki Murakami’s low-key alienation and the Coen brothers’ deadpan existentialism, Dave Boyle’s “Man From Reno Cast ” is hardly the equal of its inspirations, but it nonetheless makes for a pleasantly mellow, well-structured concoction. Tracing a Japanese mystery author’s strange sojourn into San Francisco, and a small-town sheriff’s pursuit of a possibly connected missing-persons case, the pic prevails largely on mood — conjuring a strange sense of coziness with potential danger always flitting around the margins — as well as its evocative photography of the misty city by the Bay. Future festival play is probably the best this pic can hope for theatrically (it won the Los Angeles fest’s narrative feature award), but director Boyle and star Ayako Fujitani both make solid cases for bigger projects going forward.

Though it wears its film-noir influences on its sleeve, “Man From Reno on Youtube ” might more accurately be described as film gris. Opening with a scene so foggy it may as well be taking place inside a sulfur cloud, elderly sheriff Paul Del Moral (Pepe Serna) happens upon a suspicious abandoned vehicle in the outskirts of his sleepy Bay Area community. After investigating, he accidentally runs over a battered, smartly dressed man (Hiroshi Watanabe) who materializes out of the haze, knocking him unconscious. The man then disappears from the hospital before he can be questioned.

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27 Mar 2015
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