Nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, MONSIEUR LAZHAR tells the story of a Montreal middle school class shaken by the death of their well-liked teacher. Bachir Lazhar, a 55-year-old Algerian immigrant, offers the school his services as a substitute teacher and is quickly hired. As he helps the children heal, he also learns to accept his own painful past. This moving film features exquisite performances by Fellag and a stunning ensemble of child actors.
||April 13th, 2012 (Limited) by Music Box Films|
||October 28th, 2011 (Limited) (Canada)
||August 28th, 2012 by Music Box Films Video|
||PG-13 for mature thematic material, a disturbing image and brief language.|
(Rating bulletin 2199, 11/23/2011)
||Terrorism, Writing and Writers, Death of a Spouse, Death of a Son or Daughter, Suicide, Immigration, Inspirational Teacher|
|Source:||Based on Play|
|Production Method:||Live Action|
|Creative Type:||Contemporary Fiction|
Samsara expanded from two to nine theaters, but held on well enough to rise to top spot on the per theater chart with $12,597. Sleepwalk With Me expanded to 29 theaters and was very solid with an average of $11,127.
We are clearly in TV on DVD season on the home market as there are five TV on DVD releases among the top six selling releases, with Battleship being the only first run release to break up the TV on DVD dominance. There are many such releases that are contenders for Pick of the Week: Boardwalk Empire: Season Two on Blu-ray, Homeland: Season One on Blu-ray, Once Upon a Time: Season One on Blu-ray, and The Walking Dead: Season Two on Blu-ray. However, in the end I went with The Pirates! Band of Misfits on 3D Combo Pack as the Pick of the Week. Meanwhile, Monsieur Lazhar on DVD or Blu-ray earns a rarely awarded Puck of the Week.
No new releases managed to earn a spot in the $10,000 club on this week's per theater chart. That doesn't mean it was empty, as The Avengers remained potent with an average of $23,696 during its second weekend of release. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel was arguably even more impressive, as it expanded into more than 150 additional theaters, but its per theater average only fell to $15,012. It did well enough to grab eighth place overall, and with this average, it will certainly expand more. On the other hand, the best new release was Dark Shadows with an average of $7,906. This is good, but not great. The best limited release was Girl in Progress. That was was playing in more than 300 theaters and managed an average of $4,298. That's a good start, but I don't think it will expand greatly.
No film topped the $10,000 mark on the per theater chart this past weekend. The film that came closest was Here with $7,927 in its lone theater. This does suggest some potential to expand, but it is quite low for the number one film.
There are quite a few limited releases on this week's list, but few of them are earning overall positive reviews. In fact, only Monsieur Lazhar and Post Mortem are earning reviews above 80% positive, although Here is close to that mark. Additionally, the PG-13 cut of Bully is also coming out this week and it should be the biggest hit out of all of the limited releases.
Yesterday was one of the biggest days during Awards Season as The Oscar nominations were announced in the morning. It was a two horse race for top spot as far as the big winners are concerned. Hugo earned the most nominations with eleven, while The Artist was right behind with ten. However, one could argue The Artist is the bigger winner, as more of its nominations were in the more prestigious categories.
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