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Limited Release: Future of Limited Releases

May 31st, 2013

There are a few new releases that could do well in limited release, including The East, which has an excellent pedigree, but its reviews are only good and not great. Hannah Arendt has perfect reviews and it is a subject that is just made for the art house circuit. However, I'm most interested in seeing The History of Future Folk, which is too bizarre to really describe. There are also four Canadian films coming out this week, including one, American Mary, that is playing in Canada and the States.

American Mary - Reviews
American Mary is actually a Canadian movie, but it is opening in both Canada and America this weekend. It stars Katharine Isabelle as a medical student drowning in debt, so she first tries to become a stripper, but while she's applying for the job helps save a man's life with her surgical skills. It's then she becomes an underground surgeon helping those who want body modification surgeries. It's the wrong genre for limited release and the reviews are only good and not great. I might get a copy to review once it comes out on Blu-ray and it will likely perform better on the home market than in theaters. American Mary opens tonight in select cities.

The East - Reviews
Brit Marling stars and co-wrote this movie. In the film, she plays an ex-FBI agent that now works for corporations going undercover in groups that would disrupt their business. Her latest assignment has her joining an Anarchist group, which is closer to a cult, and when she falls for the leader, she begins to question her job. The reviews are good, but not great. On the other hand, Brit Marling has a lot of Indie cred, a lot, which could help the film thrive. The East opens tonight in four theaters, but their official site is too obnoxious to sit through. (When releasing a film in limited release, the most important information is the theaters where the film is playing. If you don't give that information out right away, there's something wrong with your site.)

The Ghosts In Our Machine - No Reviews
A Canadian documentary about the animals that affect our lives... by becoming food, clothing, or testing the goods we buy. There are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but there are more than a few on other sites, most of which are very positive. The Ghosts In Our Machine opens tonight at the Carlton on Toronto, Canada and there are even Q&As with the director after the 7:00 pm showings on Friday and Saturday.

Hannah Arendt - Reviews
A biopic of Hannah Arendt, who covered the trials of Adolf Eichmann and wrote about them in her book, Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil. If you don't know the person, you probably recognize that phrase, "The Banality of Evil". So far the film's reviews are perfect and it is the type of film that tends to do well in limited release. Hannah Arendt opened on Wednesday at the Film Forum in New York City before expanding to Los Angeles next Friday.

The History of Future Folk - Reviews
An alien comes to Earth to kill all of humanity so his species can claim the planet as their new home. However, when he hears music for the first time, he calls off his mission and decides to become a folk singer. Years later, another alien comes to kill him and restart the mission. Instead, they form a duo. However, they won't be the last of their kind to come to Earth to begin the invasion. The reviews are amazing, even if the plot seems impossibly strange. The History of Future Folk opens tonight at the Cinema Village in New York City before expanding to Los Angeles, and Video on Demand, next week.

The Kings of Summer - Reviews
Three boys runaway from their respective dysfunctional families and decide to build a house in the woods. The film earned a lot of buzz at Sundance and while the overall reviews are just shy of 80% positive, it could find an audience in limited release. The Kings of Summer opens tonight in four theaters, split between New York City and Los Angeles.

The Lesser Blessed - Reviews
A Canadian film about a First Nation boy, Larry Sole (Joel Evans), who is an outcast in his small northern town. He's a victim to bullies and the girl he loves doesn't notice him. In comes a new kid who defends Larry... he also starts dating the girl of Larry's dreams. The film has a few reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and they are mostly positive. It isn't exactly breaking new ground, although setting the film in the Northwest Territory is more unique. If you like the genre, it is worth checking out. The Lesser Blessed opens tonight in theaters in Toronto, Canada, while it comes out on DVD in the States on the 25th of June.

Old Stock - Reviews
Noah Reid plays Stock, a young man dealing with a troubled past, and by dealing I mean he's moved in to the retirement home where his grandfather lives. Events force him back out into the real world, but he's unequipped to deal with that. Fortunately, he has some help from Patti (Melanie Leishman) a young lady doing community service at the retirement home. There's only one review for this film on Rotten Tomatoes, but it is positive. Old Stock opens tonight at the Carlton on Toronto, Canada, and includes a Q&A event following the 7:10 screening on Friday.

Shadow Dancer - Reviews
This film deals with the IRA terrorist attacks in the 1990s. Andrea Riseborough stars as a single-mother sent on a bombing mission in London but who is caught. She is then forced to become an informant, or go to prison leaving her son without a mother. The reviews are excellent and there's quite a bit of starpower, on both sides of the camera, while the buzz is louder than with most limited releases. On the other hand, it is also playing on Video on Demand. Shadow Dancer opens tonight in two theaters, one in New York City and the other in Santa Monica.


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Filed under: Limited Releases, The East, American Mary, Shadow Dancer, The Kings of Summer, The Lesser Blessed, Hannah Arendt, The History of Future Folk, Kiowa Gordon, Katharine Isabelle, Andrea Riseborough, Brit Marling, Chloe Rose