Helen Mirren’s Love Ranch fails to pull in the punters
US critics and audiences find little to love in Helen Mirren's brothel film
Oscar-winner Dame Helen Mirren's turn as a brothel madam looks set to go straight to video in Britain after her latest film bombed at the US box office.
According to official ticket sales figures for July, Love Ranch, which was directed by Mirren's husband Taylor Hackford, took only $137,885 during its first month of release. The film, which opened in just 11 US cinemas on June 30, cost $25 million to make. The film is now highly unlikely to get a release in Britain, according to industry observers.
Set in the 1970s, Love Ranch is based on the real story of Nevada's first legalised brothel, the infamous Mustang Ranch in Storey County. Mirren stars alongside Goodfellas actor Joe Pesci, who plays her husband. Gina Gershon plays one of the prostitutes working for the couple.
The film's dire performance will be especially disappointing for Mirren after she went all out to both prepare for the part of madam Grace Bontempo and promote the film. The star of The Queen and Prime Suspect reportedly researched her role by spending a day at a brothel and also posed topless to promote the movie.
Despite this, there was no love lost for Love Ranch from US reviewers. The Washington Post's Michael O'Sullivan gave the film just half a star out of five and called it "hackneyed" and "singularly unerotic". The New York Times reviewer Stephen Holden labeled it a "superficial, cliched picture of brothel life". ·
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