By Kyle | July 7, 2011
Uninvited to “Undefeated”! I’ve just received a foolhardy note from a public relations executive, Keith Appell of CRC Public Relations, who tells me that now I am “not invited” to the Sarah Palin documentary “The Undefeated,” which is having a critics’ screening tomorrow in Manhattan that is, and here I measure my words, going to be laughed off the screen by whatever hacks show up. Appell has banned me from the screening and not even bothered to pretend that this is for any other reason than payback for my painful-but-honest pan of a rough cut of the film in The Post. What’s hilarious about this (apart from the fact that I have two emails from another publicist for the film confirming that I was on the list for tomorrow) is that Appell seems to think other critics are somehow going to be nicer to the film than I — someone who actually likes the subject of the documentary and who is almost certainly the only Gotham film critic working for a mass-market outlet who has cast a vote for her. I can only assume that the massive flaws in the film I warned about have not in fact been corrected and that the distributors are content to release a hopeless raving sputtering jumble directed solely at an Amen chorus of supporters with zero chance of persuading any of Palin’s many haters to change their minds. I said in my take, “Its tone is an excruciating combination of bombast and whining, it’s so outlandishly partisan that it makes Richard Nixon look like Abraham Lincoln and its febrile rush of images — not excluding earthquakes, car wrecks, volcanic eruption and attacking Rottweilers — reminded me of the brainwash movie Alex is forced to sit through in ‘A Clockwork Orange.’ Except no one came along to refresh my pupils with eyedrops.” Publicists who think they can dictate favorable coverage by choosing who gets to see a movie are being very silly. You have to let all of us in and take your chances; that’s the way the game is played.
The one hope the movie has (and it’s a thin one given the level of Palin obsession in the media) is that, because it isn’t opening in Washington, New York or anywhere nearby, that maybe some Northeastern outlets won’t review it. Initial markets are Dallas, Denver, Oklahoma City, Orlando, Atlanta, Orange County, Phoenix, Houston, Indianapolis, and Kansas City. “National rollout to follow,” they claim, but that’s never going to happen to this amateurish rant.