SIFF Movie Club: Thunder Road - Virtual Q&A

Writer/director/star Jim Cummings and Producer Benjamin Wiessner join us for a live virtual Q&A moderated by SIFF programmer Megan Leonard.

Thunder Road

July 8, 2020

Virtual Events

A small-town police officer struggling to process the death of his mother, an impending divorce, and his own unrecognized cluelessness.

After viewing Thunder Road on your own, join us at 8:00pm PT for a Zoom-based Q&A discussion of the film with SIFF programmer Megan Leonard, writer/director/star Jim Cummings and producer Benjamin Wiessner.

Register using the form below before 8:00pm PT on Wednesday, July 8 to receive the Zoom meeting details and to be able to participate in the Q&A. On the day of the event, you will receive an email at 6:00pm from with the Zoom meeting ID and password.


To best replicate the in-person SIFF Movie Club experience, we suggest starting the film (92 min.) around 6:00pm PT before joining the Zoom discussion at 8:00pm PST. Please note: the Zoom discussion will be recorded.

About the Film

Make sure you watch the film before the Q&A, which will take place on Wednesday, June 3 at 8:00pm PT over Zoom. Thunder Road is available digitally to rent or purchase on a variety of platforms. For a full list of options, see here.

Thunder Road | Dir. Jim Cummings | USA | 2018 | 92 min.
Multitalented writer/director/star Jim Cummings gives a jaw-dropping performance filled with bursts of offbeat humor and unexpected pathos as a small-town police officer struggling to process the death of his mother, an impending divorce, and his own unrecognized cluelessness. Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the SXSW Film Festival and the 2018 Seattle International Film Festival New American Cinema Competition Grand Jury Prize.

As Thunder Road opens, we meet Officer Jim Arnaud, preparing to address the mourners at his beloved mother's memorial service. However, his eulogy doesn't go quite as rehearsed. He's continually on the verge of tears, of course, but also keeps making bizarre, confessional digressions, and, worst of all, his 10-year-old daughter's pink boombox won't play his mother's favorite Springsteen song. This scene sets the tone for the narrative that follows-a singular blend of cringe-inducing laughs punctuated by moments of profound sentiment. Emotionally raw following the funeral, Officer Arnaud must deal with a whole series of real-world problems, including his daughter's inappropriate school behavior, an impending divorce and custody battle, what to do with his mother's dance studio, and a viral video that always seems to surface just at the wrong moment. As he struggles through these challenges, Arnaud does his best to remain cheerful, always striving for the positive, even when his own hapless antics cause him to falter. In this emotional and offbeat feature-length adaptation of his award-winning short film, director and star Jim Cummings gives a captivating performance, infusing both his flawed character and the film with a deep, abiding pathos.

Watch the Film Beforehand