Competition Narrative Features
DIRECTED BY WARREN SROKA AND BRENT WILLIS
USA, 2011, 84 MIN
Elliot, an emotionally withdrawn Japanese-American, is working in Japan as his relationship at home falls apart. If that weren’t enough, he’s struggling with the language challenge; the food challenge; and family challenges involving memories of his dead mother, his never-there father, and the unwanted arrival of his eager and needy American half-brother Ben, who teaches English as a second language in Tokyo. Unable to connect with his home life, his past life, or the present moment, Elliot alternates between numb and raw, day after day. Skillfully shot and with fine acting by the writer/director team of Willis and Sroka, the film is at once haiku poetry and psychological monograph. Elliot and Ben are bonded and brought to some sort of peace by the beauty of the place, the demands of their past, and the gentle magic of the mind. Part Ozu and part Bob Rafelson, this gem of a film will stay with you a long while.
Warren Sroka (Dog Years) has worked as an actor for film, television, and radio. He co-wrote and produced the short “The Physics of Fathers.” Dog Years is his first feature. He also fronts Los Angeles based indie rock band Wires in the Walls.
Brent Willis (Dog Years) is presenting his feature debut with Dog Years. He directed and co-wrote the award winning short film “The Physics of Fathers.” His music video for Wires in the Walls premiered at IFC.com. He’s currently working on Thick My Blood, a dark comedy feature. Brent lives in L.A. with his wife, son, and dog.