Mule Skinner Blues (2001) - Rotten Tomatoes

Mule Skinner Blues (2001)

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Movie Info

Set in Florida's beach community, Mule Skinner Blues chronicles a group of locals who crave self-expression in the midst of their Southern Gothic lifestyles. Chief among the figures is Beanie Andrew, a fifty-something former alcoholic who acts, sings, dances, writes, and lives in a trailer park outside Jacksonville and who finds work as an extra in a music video. He then presents Stephen with a series of home videos displaying his and his friends' talents. Most of them are out-of-work shrimpers, such as Steve Walker, a Vietnam veteran and troubadour; Ricky Lix, an ill-tempered blues guitarist; Miss Jeannie, a country singer who also has a penchant for yodeling; and Annabelle Lea, an art school grad and costume designer who keeps her departed bulldog's dead body in a backyard freezer. After the music video shoot, Stephen returns to Florida to find the group beginning work on an ambitious horror film called "Turnabout Is Fair Play," which has no completed script; still, the team tries to pull together to make the picture. The subject matter is very similar to Chris Smith's award-winning documentary American Movie, which also followed a struggling group of filmmakers through their production of a very low-budget genre piece.

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Critic Reviews for Mule Skinner Blues

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (7)

Though director Earnhart has yet to find the ironic distance, sharp interviewing techniques or creative editing of documentarians like Chris Smith ... and Errol Morris ... Mule Skinner Blues suggests he is on the right track.

July 20, 2002 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

As amusing as it often is, it is even more affectionate.

May 2, 2002 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

The charms of willful eccentricity, at least as evidenced by this latest cinematic essay, are beginning to wear a bit thin.

April 26, 2002

Watching Beanie and his gang put together his slasher video from spare parts and borrowed materials is as much fun as it must have been for them to make it.

April 12, 2002 | Rating: 3/4
Top Critic

Boisterous and daft documentary.

April 12, 2002 | Rating: 2.5/4

It might be tempting to regard Mr. Andrew and his collaborators as oddballs, but Mr. Earnhart's quizzical, charming movie allows us to see them, finally, as artists.

April 12, 2002 | Rating: 3.5/5

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