The Rambler

Director: Calvin Lee Reeder
Screenwriters: Calvin Lee Reeder

Institute History

  • 2013 Sundance Film Festival


Upon release from prison, a solitary man known only as “the Rambler” embarks on a mysterious journey en route to reconnecting with his long-lost brother. Traversing treacherous back roads, lost highways, and isolated small towns, he unearths a multitude of bizarre and wickedly depraved slices of Americana.

In this expansion of his short film of the same name, which screened at the Sundance Film Festival in 2008, writer/director Calvin Lee Reeder absorbs the audience into his surreal universe, complete with a rich visual palette and an immersive soundscape. Anchored by Dermot Mulroney’s brilliantly laconic lead performance, The Rambler is a seminal road movie, filled with bizarre supernatural hallucinations, shocking episodes of violence, and enough dark humor that some twisted minds may even call it a comedy. No matter how you attempt to categorize this film, you’re not likely to find anything quite like it for miles around.

(Archives note: see also Reeder's short film The Rambler.)

(Archives note: see also Calvin Lee Reeder's Meet The Artist interview on our YouTube Channel.)

— A. M.

Screening Details

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