Scott Foundas, Variety
"A brooding, unusually ambitious American indie rooted in a restless
sense of historical responsibility . . .Harkrider deliberately (and
quite skillfully) confuses our notions of what is and isn't "real." .
. . the film exudes a sly confidence. . . . Picture is strong
visually, using spare, spacious compositions that suggest a dreamlike
Wendy Mitchell, Indiwire
"Harkrider's "Mitchellville" is the kind of astonishing debut film
that seems to announce a new fully formed filmmaking talent out of
nowhere. Harkrider wrote, directed, and stars in (with a kind of James
Spader-like troubled charisma) this genre-blending story of a Wall
Street lawyer with a secret past and an active imagination. This film
taps into a slew of issues: corporate greed, race relations, suicide,
childhood abandonment. It's also not just an ego stroke for Harkrider:
he gives Herb Lovelle room to nearly steal the show as an elderly
music teacher. The set design and cinematography were amazingly
accomplished as well."
Eric Childress, WGN, efilmcritic.com
"Themes of class structure and the way forms of art define our
collective history all merge into a story that intrigues and
ultimately moves us in a way we could never expect. This is a film
which urges a second viewing to capture all of its secrets. It doesn't
toy with and doubleback its audience into a corner like the later
works of David Lynch and Brian DePalma are prone to do. It rewards us
with a solution, but never plays like it's exclusively about catching
us off-guard. Mitchellville is a thoughtful, intellectual work that
treats its audience as such and marks John D. Harkrider as a filmmaker
to look forward to.
Vegas Arts Corner
"[As] subtle ending as any I have seen in a long time. This film is
beyond extraordinary. . . Only a few films weave in and out of reality
as this one does with such skill. The story keeps you on the edge of
your seat at each turn."