Directed by David Gordon Green, Manglehorn stars Al Pacino as an aging locksmith who contemplates starting a relationship with a new love as he watches the people and memories from his life pass away and move on. The film also stars Chris Messina (Ruby Sparks), Holly Hunter (The Piano), and Harmony Korine, the director of 2012’s Spring Breakers. IFC Films has picked up the U.S. distribution for Manglehorn, but has yet to announce a release date.
The movie is about small-town locksmith A.J. Manglehorn (Academy Award-winner Al Pacino), who has never recovered from losing the love of his life. Comforted by his daily routine, he is closer to his beloved cat than the people around him. Manglehorn’s only remaining human connections are his son (Messina), former protege (Korine), and a new friend he meets at the bank (Hunter).
The film was a hit at the Toronto International Film Festival, with Pacino’s performance in particular receiving praise. Jonathan Sehring, president of IFC Films, said, “This is (Green’s) most mature, introspective work to date, and Pacino shines in a touchingly restrained performance.” Green’s career has followed an interesting path, oscillating between micro-budgeted indies like All the Real Girls (2003) and Joe (2013), and broad studio comedies like Pineapple Express (2008) and The Sitter (2011). Depending on the timing of the release, Manglehorn could get some Oscar buzz, as Academy voters tend to like films about aging men who manage to revitalize their lives. Whether or not the potential awards buzz will translate into mainstream commercial success is another question entirely.