White Rabbit

Cinequest 2014

4_14_Sky_WhiteRabbit_ph1The Bay Area is well served in this satirical thriller set against the backdrop of the Occupy Oakland movement. White Rabbit (2014) updates the familiar noir theme of an alienated war veteran. Protagonist Kerryann Terkel (Carla Pauli) served in Iraq. Back home, no one is clamoring for her skills as a radio technician. Instead, she’s hired on as a clerical employee at an Oakland collection agency where she barely fits in. taxi-driver-1Martin Scorsese used color and lighting to show the after effects of war on Viet Nam vet Travis Bickle (Robert De Niro) in Taxi Driver (1976). Kerryann also suffers from PTSD with the sounds of combat haunting her. Like Travis, Kerryann finds a measure of camaraderie with fellow veterans and coworkers, yet essentially remains a loner. Unlike Travis, she’s not a sociopath. But she knows a few, starting with a crooked cop named Ricky Ray (Eric Michael Kochmer), a slick talker she meets in a bar. They become entangled in a plot to electronically rip-off a Tea Party candidate’s slush fund. It’s a delicious idea, which becomes increasingly hilarious (and violent) the closer the heist comes to fruition.ricky-ray-and-kerryann-terkel-in-white-rabbitTrishWardMakeUpJarvisMooreasE.DonRussellTrained at San Francisco’s American Conservatory Theater, Pauli has a natural toughness that makes her believable in the role. Also outstanding is Bay Area architect Jarvis Moore as the fellow combat veteran who’s got Kerryann’s back. A production supervisor at Pixar by day, director Bill Kinder is an unabashed fan of film noir. During the Q&A, he cited director Robert Aldrich [Kiss Me Deadly (1955)] as a major influence. Kevin Warner wrote the White Rabbit screenplay, inspired by the crime thrillers of the 1970s. Ryan Lynch, also from Pixar, produced the film.

Producer Ryan Lynch, Makeup Artist Trish Ward, Bill Kinder

Ryan Lynch, Makeup Artist Trish Ward and Bill Kinder at the Cinequest premiere

See the new Film Festival Pass column in Noir City, the journal of The Film Noir Foundation.

Leave a Reply