Hello, there! My name is Preston Barta, and I am the features editor of Fresh Fiction and senior film critic at the Denton Record-Chronicle. My cinematic love story began where I was born: off planet on the isolated desert world of the Jakku system. It's there I passed the time scavenging for loose parts with my good friend Rey. One day I found an old film projector and a dusty reel of the 1975 film JAWS. It rocked my world so much that I left my kinfolk in the rearview (I so miss their morning cups of green milk) to pursue my dreams of writing about film. It wasn't long until I met two gents who said they would give me a lift. I can't recall their names, but one was an older man who liked to point a lot and the other was a tall, hairy fella. They got me as far as one of Jupiter's moons where we crossed paths with the U.S.S. Enterprise. Some pointy-eared bastard said I was clear to come aboard. He saw that I was clutching my beloved shark movie and invited me to the "moving pictures room" where he was screening the 1993 film JURASSIC PARK to his crew. He said my life would be much more prosperous if I were familiar with more work by the god named Steven Spielberg. From there, my love for cinema blossomed. Once we reached planet Earth, everything changed. I found the small town of Denton, TX, and was welcomed into the Barta family. They showed me the writings of local film critic Boo Allen. He became my hero and caused me to chase a degree in film and journalism. After my studies at graduate of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, I met some film critics who showed me the ropes and got me into my first press screening: 2011's THE GREEN LANTERN. Don't worry; I recovered just fine. MAD MAX: FURY ROAD was only four years away.
Ryan Reynolds has not had a great track record when it comes to mainstream cinema over the past decade culminating with the disastrous GREEN LANTERN in 2011. However he has done quite well on the independent front (especially in the dark comedy THE VOICES from earlier this year.) The trailer for Reynolds’ latest MISSISSIPPI GRIND hit the internet today. He’s acting along side the fabulous character actor Ben Mendolsohn (THE DARK KNIGHT RISES) so this buddy film should be a solid romp.
Here’s the plot synopsis released by A24:
In this lively, freewheeling road movie, Emmy Award nominee Ben Mendelsohn plays Gerry, a talented but down-on-his-luck gambler whose fortunes begins to change when he meets Curtis (Ryan Reynolds), a younger, highly charismatic poker player. The two strike up an immediate friendship and Gerry quickly persuades his new friend to accompany him on a road trip to a legendary high stakes poker game in New Orleans. As they make their way down the Mississippi River, Gerry and Curtis manage to find themselves in just about every bar, racetrack, casino, and pool hall they can find, experiencing both incredible highs and dispiriting lows, but ultimately forging a deep and genuine bond that will stay with them long after their adventure is over.
Reminiscent of classic 1970s American Cinema, Mississippi Grind is an unforgettable journey featuring two characters who—flawed as they may be—are always worth rooting for. It’s a film about friendship, addiction, regret, family, and the paths we sometimes unexpectedly find ourselves on—told with empathy, humor, and a remarkable light touch by acclaimed filmmakers Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden (HALF NELSON, IT’S KIND OF A FUNNY STORY).
Fleck and Boden have made some stellar films in the past chiefly IT’S KIND OF A FUNNY STORY. Their eclectic directorial choices show their talents as filmmakers so this release will be one to look out for when it hits theaters September 25th. DirecTV customers will get the chance to see the film early when it hits the service on August 13th.