Music, murder, espionage, and paranoia hold hands in “Slow Machine”

Music, murder, espionage, and paranoia hold hands in "Slow Machine"

Those who miss the indie 1990s movies have a reason for celebration because Slow Machine (2020) might be the perfect film for those nostalgic souls. Surrounded by indie music, and captured on lush and invigorating 16mm, the movie is one of those pieces of art, where what matters, are the text and the performing of the actors, the story and the emotions created by the characters, in exchange for the saturation of action and special effects cinema have us accustomed in the last decades.

The movie centers on Stephanie, a restless and vibrant actress, who meets Gerard, an NYPD counter-terrorism specialist who’s an aficionado of experimental theater (and maybe out of his mind). Flirtation ensues, ends disastrously, and forces Stephanie to the ramshackle upstate home of musician Eleanor Friedberger, yet this supposed escape is infected by violent memories of her past life.

This is the debut feature film of the duo formed by Joe Denardo and Paul Felten. Felten, who was one of the co-writers of James Franco’s mystery-comedy Zeroville (2019), is also the writer of the screenplay. The main cast is formed by Stephanie Hayes, Scott Shepherd, the indie rock musician debuting on a feature film Eleanor Friedberger, and 1990s independent and experimental cinema queen Chloë Sevigny.

Slow Machine (2020) has been part of several international film festivals through 2020 including International Film Festival Rotterdam, Champs-Élysées Film Festival, New Holland Island International Debut Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Vienna International Film Festival, and Kyiv Critics Week. Now it is scheduled for a digital release via Grasshopper Film on June 4, 2021. Here you can watch its official trailer.


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