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SYNOPSIS
On the road in a desperate attempt to reunite with his estranged wife, Elliot takes respite at a desert motel. He encounters Greta, a mysterious woman bearing a striking resemblance to his wife. Elliot soon discovers her secret and descends into a mind-bending journey that forces him to question exactly who she is and where they are.

Haunting and hallucinogenic, SILENT RIVER is a layered and nuanced film that boldly challenges the very notions of reality and illusion.

DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT
What happens should our pre-occupations vanish? Where do we find meaning when everything familiar is gone?

SILENT RIVER is a film about three characters each facing an existential crisis. Stripped of everything they’ve ever had or known, these three strangers only have each other as they struggle to return to a semblance of normal life. In the middle of the desert, a landscape evoking nothingness, they embark on a journey through a land of dormant dreams that becomes increasingly hostile and unfamiliar.

When I made my first feature film YELLOW, released in the U.S.A. back in 1997, I had set out to make a teen comedy/drama with an ensemble of young Asian American characters as the centerpiece of the story. I grew up in the 80s and loved the fast landscape of American pop culture all around me- with booming commercial cinema, MTV, and cable television. But what was always missing for me was a direct representation of my story and likeness in American culture. I knew there had to be many out there, like me, starved to see their own stories on screen. Throughout the making of YELLOW, I was repeatedly told that no one would come to see an Asian American film in the theaters. I was told that my main character, a teenage son of Korean American first generation immigrants with a family convenience store business, was a trope- when in fact it was my childhood and life experience.

With Silent River, I am inspired to move ever deeper into conveying my experience of life through a personal vocabulary of cinematic expression.

Silent River was a work of passion for all involved.  This film might not typically fall within the milieu of what audiences might be familiar with in Asian American cinema.  It is an effort towards contributing to and expanding the conversation of the kinds of films Asian Americans are unearthing both now and in the future.
- Chris Chan Lee
writer, director







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