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Directed by Junta Yamaguchi

Cast: Munenori Nagano, Riko Fujitani, Yuki Torigoe

Official Selection, 2023 Fantastic Fest

Bottomless bowls of rice. Sake that never gets hot. Shampoo suds that keep getting into the eyes. Disappearing words from a document! There’s something wrong with time at the Fujiya Inn, a remote spa in the Kibune area, specifically for two minutes. In other words, they’re stuck in a time loop!

Despite the time conundrum, the Fujiya Inn staff remain committed to taking care of the guests. That’s easier said than done. For instance, when reliving the same two minutes, how does one take a break? Should staff prepare for the night guests if time doesn’t move forward? The pragmatic is always paired with the outrageous where each two minutes explodes with a new absurdity that stands in the way of solving this time riddle.

Director Junta Yamaguchi (Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes, SDAFF 2021) continues his lo-fi, high concept time-loop adventures with twinkling music scores, breathless long takes of stairs, and charming performances. Equal parts video game, escape room, and rom-com, RIVER brings a soft-tinted comedic delight to the science fiction genre.

– Alissa Tu

Dates & Times


Edwards Mira Mesa

Sun, Nov 5
5:40 pm

Edwards Mira Mesa

Mon, Nov 6
5:50 pm