Back when Zachary Heinzerling’s romance between a struggling painter and his wife debuted at Sundance in January, Indiewire was all over it. Eric Kohn called the film “a story about creative desire so strong it hurts,” before bestowing an A-grade upon the much-loved festival favorite. He went on to predict “a healthy life on the festival circuit, particularly at documentary-specific gatherings,” for the director’s sophomore feature, “Cutie and the Boxer.”
Now the film has played at the Tribeca, San Francisco, Sydney, Nantucket, and Karlovy film festivals and is gearing up for its August 16 theatrical release date with its first trailer. The film focuses on the 40-year marriage between Ushio and Noriko Shinohara, the former a painter who uses boxing gloves to create some of his art and the latter his wife who hopes to establish an identity outside of her husband’s work. With beautiful imagery of the already alluring art, “Cutie and the Boxer” looks to be as enjoyable as it is moving; as heartbreaking as it is hopeful.
In regards to the film’s theatrical prospects, Kohn called the documentary’s theatrical prospects “dicey,” but believed strong reviews could buoy the film to a successful limited run. So far it’s earned plenty of those, so it’ll be up to audiences come August 16 to prove Kohn’s prediction right or wrong. Check out the trailer for yourself below, and decide for yourself if “Cutie and the Boxer” is worth seeing in theaters.