The year is 1945. Left to fend for herself when her SS officer father and mother, a staunch Nazi believer, are interred by the victorious Allies at the end of World War II, Lore, a fourteen-year-old German girl, must lead her four siblings on a harrowing journey across a devastated country. When she meets the charismatic and mysterious young refugee Thomas, Lore soon finds her world shattered by feelings of hatred and desire as she must put her trust in the very person she was always taught to hate in order to survive.
It's the day after Memorial Day, which means we are in the summer season, which is a terrible time for the home market. The only first-run release of the week is Dark Skies, which is hardly a major release. There are a few summer TV shows that are coming out on DVD and / or Blu-ray, some of which are interesting. The latest season of Doctor Who is coming out this week, but it is being split, and not just into two parts, so that precludes it from being a Pick of the Week contender. There are not a lot of options for Pick of the Week, but I'm going with Beetlejuice: The Complete Series, but keep in mind there could be some nostalgia at work here and Lore on DVD or Blu-ray is arguably the better release. Meanwhile, Hellbound? on DVD earns the rarely awarded Puck of the Week for best Canadian release.
The Gatekeepers remained in first place in the per theater chart with an average of $14,024 in three theaters. The only other film to top $10,000 on the per theater chart was Identity Thief with an average of $11,000, which is amazing for a wide release at this time of year.
Universal has a winner on its hands this weekend, as Identity Thief is set to make a very impressive $36.5 million or so, according to their Sunday tracking, and that in spite of the big storm in the Northeast (reportedly causing a 10% at the box office) and mediocre reviews. The performance is perhaps helped by the surfeit of Oscar-hopefuls and action movies in theaters recently, and is clearly also a feather in the cap for stars Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy. The weekend's other opener, Side Effects is set for a more modest $10 million, which isn't exactly DOA, but is at best on life support. Perhaps good word of mouth will help it hang on in theaters for a while.
While there are a number of diverse limited releases this week, only two of them are earning overwhelmingly positive reviews. Those two are Lore and Caesar Must Die. Neither has a real shot at mainstream success, as foreign language films and documentaries rarely expand significantly. Hopefully they will at least find a receptive audience in the art house circuit.
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