Calling all young mums from Leeds!

Thursday April 28th 2011


Chances are you’ve already heard about the scuffle that erupted last month when Icon announced that it would be releasing Terrence Malick’s perpetually-postponed family drama The Tree of Life in the UK on May 4th, ahead of its Cannes premiere. US distributor Summit Entertainment subsequently took legal action against Icon, forcing them to delay the release until after Cannes, but not before a few of the more pompous American critics had had their say on the matter. And critics don’t get much more pompous than this guy:

His name is Jeffrey Wells and he runs Hollywood Elsewhere (me neither). And if you think his byline photo screams cunt then wait until you get a load of his writing.

Responding to Empire’s Helen O’Hara, who broke the story back in April, Jeffrey writes:

What a shocker if true! Years of waiting and all this delay, and the Cannes booking of The Tree of Life not even confirmed and it all might all come down to a commercial opening in England? A young mom in Leeds who can’t afford a babysitter will be able to take her two kids to an afternoon showing of The Tree of Life at the local plex before the Cannes elite has a looksee? No, no…that’s too much, too ridiculous. It can’t be true.

The emphases are his own.

Obviously, as a stickler for geographical accuracy, I would first point out to Jeffrey that England and the UK are not one and the same, but for some reason people seem to be more upset about his attitude towards ‘young moms’. I mean, give the guy a break, he’s only implying that women who have kids and happen to live in Leeds are by definition less worthy of watching a movie than a David Hasselhoff tribute act an esteemed member of the press. And the rest of his ‘elite’ of course.

So in the interest of balance, I’m looking for a young mum from Leeds (shall we say 23 or under?) who’s interested in seeing the film when it finally makes it into UK cinemas this summer. I’ll pay for two tickets on the condition that you write me a brief review (100 words or so) afterwards. Then I’ll compare it with his review and see who’s got the more interesting viewpoint.

Does you or someone you know fulfil these requirements? Let me know.

(Warning: despite what Jeffrey Wells says, the attendance of children will be subject to BBFC certification.)