After being released from prison, a man known as The Rambler stumbles upon a strange mystery as he attempts a dangerous journey through treacherous back roads and small towns en route to reconnecting with his long lost brother.
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★★★★ review by Eli Hayes on Letterboxd
Calvin clearly loves his good olll' Davids.
The Oregonian with clear references
to Lost Highway, and this with a
blatant homage to Scanners.
Cleeeaaarly loves his Davids, and
pays tribute to them respectfully &
effectively -- plus, what can I say? I do too.
Love me some Cronenberg, love me some Lynch,
and love me some Reeder as well. Recommended.
★★★★ review by Jeff on Letterboxd
I know I've mentioned that director Calvin Lee Reeder is an acquaintance of mine, and that's because I am desperate to bask in his reflected glory. I mention it again to both do some basking and to recognize that I can't judge his movies objectively because I want the guy to succeed. But, for me, The Rambler is proof that he may actually have a shot at some sort of success.
Now this film is a lot of weird-for-weirdness-sake. And even those of us who generally dig the weird may not ever get on board with what's going on here. But I really enjoyed the ride.
The Rambler is not that far removed from Reeder's debut, The Oregonian, but it's more intentionally episodic and less overtly horrific (though the horror influence is still there and it's plenty gory). It's also a far more polished affair that's much more willing to entertain rather than just unsettle.
But, again, it's a fucking weird movie where weird shit is constantly happening. Reeder will probably always have to deal with comparisons to David Lynch (which are apt), but The Rambler proves that he does have a unique voice and that he's able to get his vision on screen.
Despite my intial misgivings about The Oregonian, I'm actually really excited to see what he does next.
★★★½ review by Britti Rocky Horror on Letterboxd
Ein stoischer Dermot Mulroney begibt sich nach seiner Haftentlassung auf einen lynchesken Roadtrip zu seinem Bruder, auf dem er an allerlei schräges Geleut und in bizarre Situationen gerät.
Ist teils äußerst brutal, verstörend, aber auch tierisch lustig (der schmierige Penner in der Bar). Kann man machen, wenn man Lynch-Filmen nicht abgeneigt ist. Hat mir echt gut gefallen!
★★★★ review by Matty Stanfield on Letterboxd
Clearly I stand somewhat alone, but I really enjoyed Calvin Reeder's 'rambling, twisted and gory journey into horror comedy. Reeder manages to infuse a sort of demented glee in peeking into the darker corners of what I would call "negative Americana"
This is not a filmmaker interested in narrative plot. He is looking to provoke, creep and disturb his audience into some uncomfortable chuckles. And it's cool to see Dermot Mulroney step into a role so vastly different from he normally does.
This is not a movie that will be pleasing to mainstream tastes. But for those of us who enjoy an artistic but darkly comedic journey through the darkest psyche of American highways, back roads and forgotten small towns --- it is a memorable ride.
★★★★ review by Christopher on Letterboxd
While its audience is probably quite limited (with plenty of walkouts abound), The Rambler is a rich fever dream with a rambling narrative set across a lost highway which deserves any cult status it garners. While the David Lynch similarities are apparent, The Rambler has a strange optimism and feels a bit more like an homage than a rip-off. Biggest surprise of SXSW and might rate it higher on later viewings.
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