Slow Machine

Joe DeNardo, Paul Felten, USA 2020, 72’
Shiva Baby The Evening Hour

A dark ambience, fragments of scenes, and a bleak poem by Philip Larkin. On the count of three, let the film begin. A panic-stricken woman heads to a remote house where the members of a folk-rock band are staying. She claims that she is having problems with her roommates and that she is afraid of retaliation. She speaks with a white-trash accent that doesn’t really suit her Scandinavian beauty. It’s all a hoax, a one-person play. The protagonist is an actress, and although she is really in trouble, her problems are of a completely different nature. We discover her story in a series of flashbacks, but the answers raise even more questions. Slow Machine is partly a thriller and partly playing at being a thriller. The film is a game of telling stories, leading viewers by the nose, winding them up. The filmmakers admit to being inspired by Jacques Rivette’s Out 1—the affinity is clear both in the film’s stuffy and intoxicating atmosphere of paranoia and in the use of 16 mm film and images of bohemian life.

Piotr Mirski

Joe DeNardo

Born in 1979, Joe DeNardo is a filmmaker, musician, and photographer. He grew up in the Midwest and studied at Evergreen State College in Olympia. He was a member of the art punk band Growing. Slow Machine, made in a series of short films, is his full-length debut.


2011 Ima Nema (doc., short)

2020 Slow Machine (co-dir.)

Paul Felten

Paul Felten is a director and screenwriter from Reno, Nevada. He studied at Evergreen State College and Columbia University, and he also took part in the Sundance Screenwriters Lab. He co-wrote the screenplays for James Franco’s Francophrenia and Zeroville. Slow Machine is his directorial debut.


2020 Slow Machine (co-dir.)

Cast & Crew

director Joe DeNardo, Paul Felten
screenplay Paul Felten
cinematography Joe DeNardo
editing Joe DeNardo, Ian Olds
sound Sal Barra, Barry London
cast Stephanie Hayes, Scott Shepherd, Eleanor Friedberger, Ean Sheehy, Chloë Sevigny
producer Shrihari Sathe, Kyle Hepp, Caroline von Kuhn, Alex Witherill
production Dialectic, ACE Productions, Green Street Film Company
sales Dialectic
language English
coloration colour
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