Salon’s Andrew O’Hehir wonders whether audiences will come out to see Ava DuVernay’s Middle of Nowhere – I have no idea if they will. I’m guessing the target demo will not. But I’m hoping that anyone who wants to see a dreamy, haunting and altogether unforgettable film made for thinking adults will check this one out. Lots of really great movies hitting theaters soon, in rapid succession. A few of them should not slip through the cracks – Beasts of the Southern Wild, Moonrise Kingdom and now, Middle of Nowhere.


To say that “Middle of Nowhere,” winner of Sundance’s coveted directing award for writer-director Ava DuVernay, sheds long-overdue light on infrequently explored aspects of African American life is true as far as it goes, but it doesn’t go far enough.

For the truth is that it is uncommon to see serious adult dramas this moving and accomplished, so attuned to real people and their complex, recognizable emotions, no matter the racial makeup of the characters involved.

So though it echoes the films of Charles Burnett, the plays of August Wilson and “A Raisin in the Sun,” at its heart “Middle of Nowhere” is old-school, character-driven narrative at its most quietly effective.

NY Times’ Manohla Dargis names Middle of Nowhere a Critic’s Pick:

A plaintive, slow-boiling, quietly soul-stirring drama about a woman coming into her own, “Middle of Nowhere” carries the imprimatur of Sundance, but without the dreary stereotypes or self-satisfied politics that can (at times unfairly) characterize its offerings. The journey is hard in Ms. DuVernay‘s movie, as well as politically freighted, but also more complex than it might initially seem.

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  • Unlikely hood

    Haven’t seen a title fit that smoothly into it’s eventual Oscar-race headlines since “The Blind Side.”

  • I would like to see this get an iTunes/VOD release. This film is only playing in 6 theatres. Kinda hard to gauge if people will see the film if it’s not playing anywhere, ya know?

  • Brenda Frazier-Ross

    why is this film being battered for opening in 6 cities when most independents open in two then platform out? seems this thing has to live up to unequal expectations from every angle.

  • I don’t know about other people, but I wasn’t battering it. I’m just dying to see it! I hope it does get a good platform release.

  • It sounds interesting. I’d like to see it. But you know how it is out here. I’ll probably have to wait for DVD.

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