I wasn’t even invited to see David McKenzie‘s Spread, a nookie-and-moral-reckoning drama with Ashton Kutcher and Anne Heche. It opened last Friday and got killed by the critics. But Andrew O’Hehir‘s Salon review made me want to see it anyway. So I’m thinking about buying a ticket. Naah, I can’t do that. It would hurt too much if it sucks. But maybe I can get a screener from whomever.
“The indie-film hipoisie are likely to spurn it,” O’Hehir wrote, “[because] there’s no Diablo Cody nudge-nudge-wink-wink quality to Jason Dean Hall‘s screenplay, and it doesn’t exactly reverberate with wrenching, low-budget sincerity either.
‘But Mackenzie is a consummate stylist, one of British cinema’s emerging 21st-century talents, who has displayed a remarkable ability to make interesting movies that get in their own way and never reach wide audiences. [And] with Spread, Mackenzie follows the London-to-L.A. flight path of many British directors before him, and focuses his withering Scottish gaze on the soulless sexuality of the Southern California rich and wannabe-rich.
“The results suggest a mixture of early Paul Verhoeven and Tony Richardson‘s legendary film version of Evelyn Waugh‘s The Loved One. So, yeah, Spread is too clever by half to be an actual hit, while also lacking snob appeal. Too bad about that. Still, if the very funny, very dark and very precise thing that Kutcher and Mackenzie pull off here floats your boat, then getcher tickets right now — or just wait six weeks, because this one’s likely to go right through the theatrical ecosystem and onto DVD lickety-split.”