A Perfect Day for Caribou – FILM FEST KNOX | November 14-17, 2024 Skip to content
Presented by Visit Knoxville and Regal
A Perfect Day for Caribou

A Perfect Day for Caribou

Jeff Rutherford · 2022 · 95 minutes
May 15 · Regal Riviera · 7:00 p.m.

FILM FEST KNOX is committed to showcasing and advocating for personal, ambitious regional cinema—that is, films made outside of Los Angeles and New York City that speak in a unique voice and have a distinct sense of the place where they’re made.

To that end, we’re thrilled to kick off the new monthly series with A Perfect Day for Caribou, Jeff Rutherford’s beautiful and moving family drama shot on the plains of Eastern Oregon. Starring Charlie Plummer (Lean on Pete) as a young, underemployed man who is trying his best to be a good model for his son while being estranged from his own father, A Perfect Day for Caribou has been compared to the films of Jim Jarmusch, Monte Hellman, and Gus Van Sant.

Join us for this one-time-only free screening on May 15.

[The] landscapes Rutherford and his cinematographer Alfonso Herrera Salcedo photograph in images are expansive despite the boxy 4:3 frame. The low contrast black-and-white and the barrenness of the terrain create a purgatorial atmosphere; as we watch the estranged father and son trudge across sweeping plains, over rolling hills and canyons, into the depth of a forest, and back again to that godforsaken cemetery, their two figures appear like lost souls roaming an earthly limbo.

Rutherford’s debut belongs to a lineage of US independent cinema that includes such milestones as Monte Hellman’s The Shooting (1966) and Gus Van Sant’s Gerry (2002), as well as foreign implants like Bruno Dumont’s Twentynine Palms (2003). Though aesthetically and philosophically disparate, these films all pit humans against the vast American landscape as a means of existential meditation. A Perfect Day for Caribou is a rare hopeful example, contemplating the eternal recurrence of the sins of the father in order to probe the possibility of breaking the chain.

Giovanni Marchini Camia, Film Writer & Locarno Programmer
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