Follow us on

Limited Releases: Pain in the... Mule

November 21st, 2014

The Mule poster

It is not a busy week as far as limited releases are concerned, which is good, because my computer crashed halfway through and I had to redo some of this column. (Save early, save often.) However, while there are not a lot of films on this week's list, many of them are earning overwhelmingly positive reviews. It is unlikely that all of them will be able to capitalize on their reviews. Bad Hair, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, The King and the Mockingbird, The Mule, as well as a few documentaries all deserve to find audiences. Hopefully more than a couple of them actually do.

Bad Hair - Reviews
One of several films opening in limited release earning overwhelmingly positive reviews. It is about a young boy who wants his hair straightened for his school picture, but his mother becomes increasingly distressed over his obsession with his looks. Bad Hair opened on Wednesday at the Film Forum in New York City.

Extraterrestrial - Reviews
A group of friends go a cabin in the woods and are attacked by aliens. It is not a unique premise and it has the reviews to show for it. Combine the reviews with the genre and the fact that it has been playing on Video on Demand for a month and it adds up to weak box office numbers.

Food Chains - Reviews
A documentary about our food and how the desire for higher profits has led to a system that underpays the people who pick the food. There are not a lot of reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but the vast majority of them are positive. The film could do well at the box office, for a documentary. Food Chains opens tonight in 17 theaters in select cities. Check out the official site for more details.

A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night - Reviews
A film from Iran about a ghost town where the outcasts of society live. What they don't know is that one of them is a vampire who has been targeting them. The reviews are stunning and I really hope it overcomes the usual added obstacles horror films have on limited release. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night opens tonight in two theaters, one in New York City and the other in Los Angles, with more dates scheduled over the coming weeks. Check out the official site for more details.

Happy Valley - Reviews
A documentary looking at the Jerry Sandusky scandal that rocked the Penn State community. The reviews are mostly very positive; however, the main complaint is the lack of new information. If you are interested in the subject matter, you probably know everything the film has to say. Happy Valley opened on Wednesday and is now playing in 3 theaters. Check out the official site for more details.

The King and the Mockingbird - Reviews
An animated French film released in 1980 in France, but it is only getting an American release now. Looking at the reviews, there will be a lot of people who are glad this is happening. That said, animated films rarely do well in limited release. The King and the Mockingbird opened on Wednesday and is now playing in four theaters. Check out the official site for more details.

Late Phases - Reviews
A war vet is put into a retirement home by his son. He hates the place and the residents resent him for his attitude. However, this isn't a normal retirement home and the residents are attacked by a strange beast. The reviews are good, but not great, while this is the wrong genre for limited release. Finally, it is playing on Video on Demand, so its theatrical release is likely an afterthought.

The Mule - Reviews
A naïve man is convinced by his friend to smuggle drugs from Thailand to Australia and by smuggle I mean stick them up his butt. When the police suspect him of smuggling drugs, he is put into custody while nature takes its course. It doesn't sound like a good idea for a movie, but the reviews are fantastic. Unfortunately, it is a dark comedy and these films rarely do well at the box office. Additionally, it is playing on Video on Demand and will likely do much better on the home market than in it will in theaters.

Pulp: a Film About Life, Death & Supermarkets - Reviews
A documentary about the farewell concert for Pulp, a British Pop Rock band. The reviews are excellent, but I don't know how many people here actually know who Pulp is. Their biggest hit was nearly 20 years ago and they've never had a album reach the top 100 in the United States. Additionally, the film is playing on Video on Demand, which will further limit its box office potential. Pulp opened on Wednesday and is now playing in six theaters. Check out the official site for more details.

Reach Me - Reviews
A motivational book becomes a hit and has a profound effect on a number of diverse individuals. On the other hand, it likely won't have a profound effect at the box office, as its reviews a 0% positive. Reach Me opens tonight in theaters, as well as on Video on Demand.

V/H/S Viral - Reviews
The third film in the V/H/S franchise. The previous two films became big hits, but on the home market. Like most horror films, they struggled in limited release and I see no reason why this one won't do the same. After playing on Video on Demand for a month, V/H/S Viral opens in four theaters tonight. Check out the official site for more details.

The Yes Men Are Revolting - Reviews
The third documentary focusing on The Yes Men, a pair of anti-consumerism activists. This film only has three reviews, which suggests it will slip between the cracks. This is unfortunate, as all three reviews are positive. Maybe those who remember the first two movies will check it out.


-

Filed under: Limited Releases, Reach Me, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, The Yes Men Are Revolting, V/H/S: Viral, Pelo malo, Pulp: a Film About Life, Death & Supermarkets, Extraterrestrial, Le roi et l'oiseau, The Mule, Happy Valley, Late Phases, Food Chains, V/H/S