Synopsis: Teenage Juan crashes his family's car into a telegraph pole on the outskirts of town, and then scours the streets searching for someone to help him fix it. His quest will bring him to Don Heber, an old paranoid mechanic whose only companion is Sica, his almost human boxer dog; to Lucía, a young mother who is convinced that her real place in life is as a lead singer in a punk band, and to "The One who Knows", a teenage mechanic obsessed with martial arts and Kung Fu philosophy. The absurd and bewildering worlds of these characters drag Juan into a one day journey in which he will come to accept what he was escaping from in the first place--an event both as natural and inexplicable as a loved one's death. [Synopsis courtesy of Film Movement]
Round-up: In the Village Voice, Aaron Hillis praises director Fernando Eimbcke's work, "Eimbcke's droll rhythms are reminiscent of early Jim Jarmusch and Aki Kaurismäki—h... ere stylistically appropriate for a film about social and emotional inertia." In Time Out New York, Kevin B. Lee is entranced by the film, saying "It’s a mysterious, alluring world that Eimbcke reveals to him and us, where both strangers and surroundings offer solace when family fails." Fernando F. Croce's Slant review is middling: "Eimbcke has an undeniable gift for deftly doleful wavelengths, where slight events accumulate meaning on the road into adulthood. By continuing to hit the same minor key of adolescent wistfulness, however, he suggests that he may have some artistic maturation of his own to still go through." The Boston Globe's Laura Bennett finds that the film's theme is a self-fulfilling prophecy: ""Lake Tahoe," then, is about coming to terms with the ordinariness of life. It is a tender and honest look at the futility of trying to run away from reality. But it ultimately sags under the weight of its bloated silences and stagnant story line. Even in the face of tragedy, Eimbcke seems to be saying, life - like the film - goes tediously on."