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Addicted to Limited Releases

November 30th, 2012

There are not a lot of films on this week's list, but there are a couple that are earning overwhelmingly positive reviews. Both California Solo and Dragon are earning more than 80% positive reviews and hopefully one or both will find success in limited release. Also opening this week is Talaash and it could be an interesting film to keep an eye on, as Bollywood films are slowly becoming more mainstream.

Addicted to Fame - Reviews
A documentary about David Giancola, a B-movie filmmaker who was trying to earn his big break in 2005 by casting Anna Nicole Smith in his latest film. He figured that even if the film bombed, and that was likely given her mental health / addiction problems, he could film the behind-the-scenes and if / when Anna Nicole Smith had a meltdown, he could sell the footage as a tell-all documentary. This is a pretty low plan, but you would think that when Anna Nicole Smith died, he would abandon his original plan. Nope. Five years later he's releasing the movie anyway. If the critics are right, very few people will see it. Addicted to Fame opens tonight in five theaters.

California Solo - Reviews
Of all of the films on this week's list, I think this one will perform the best on the per theater chart. Robert Carlyle stars as a former Britpop musician who now lives just outside Los Angeles as a farmer. However, when he is arrested for a DUI, he is threatened with deportation, unless he can prove his removal from the country would hurt an American relative. Now he has to reconnect with his ex-wife and their daughter. This film is earning some of the best reviews on this week's list, plus it does have more star power than most limited releases earn. Finally, it is the type of film that tends to do well in limited release. Hopefully all of this will combine and it can reach its full potential. California Solo opens tonight at the Quad Cinema in New York City.

Dragon - Reviews
A former martial arts expert wants to live a peaceful life, and as such is living as a simple farmer with his wife and two kids. His new life crumbles when he saves a shop keeper from two gang members, and does so in a way that betrays his martial arts prowess. Now a local cop starts to poking into his past, and his past starts looking for him. The film's reviews are overwhelmingly positive (even if most critics agree the plot takes a backseat to the action) and there is certainly a market for martial arts movies. However, that market is more on the DVD and Blu-ray than in art house theaters. Dragon opens tonight in ten theaters nationwide.

Ex-Girlfriends - Reviews
Alexander Poe wrote, directed, and starred in this movie. In the film, he plays a man who wants to get back with his ex-girlfriend, Kristen Connolly; however, that becomes more complicated when he learns she and another of his ex-girlfriends, Jennifer Carpenter, are unknowingly dating the same man, Noah Bean. So far, the reviews on Rotten Tomatoes are very weak. It is also Alexander Poe's first feature-length film, so he doesn't have a built-in audience to go see the movie. Ex-Girlfriends opened on Wednesday at the Cinema Village in New York City.

Hecho en Mexico - No Reviews
A documentary about the Mexican music industry, including folk music and modern genres like rock and rap. There are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and the film is opening in twelve theaters, which is a lot for a documentary. That spells trouble for the film's box office chances.

Silent Night - Reviews
I can't believe there are so many Killer Santa Claus movies that I had to make a keyword for them. This film is a remake of Silent Night, Deadly Night and features a serial killer dressed as Santa Claus. There are only two reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and the critics are split on their reaction to the film. I think most moviegoers will give it a pass, but perhaps it will find an audience on the home market. Silent Night opens tonight in ten theaters.

Talaash - Reviews
A Bollywood film about a cop investigating the death of a popular film star. It actually has a review on Rotten Tomatoes, which is becoming more common for Bollywood films, so hopefully this is a sign they are becoming more mainstream. The review is positive, but one review is not enough to judge a movie. Talaash opens tonight in 172 theaters and should be the biggest hit on this week's list, at least in terms of raw dollars.

Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning - Reviews
I have little hope for this film's box office chances for a number of reasons. Firstly, it is the wrong genre for limited release. Secondly, while its reviews are good for a big budget action film, they are weak for a limited release. Thirdly, it was previously released on Video on Demand. Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning opens tonight in three theaters in New York City, Los Angeles, and Austin, Texas.


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Filed under: Limited Releases, Wu Xia, Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning, Silent Night, Addicted to Fame, Ex-Girlfriends, Hecho en México, California Solo, Talaash, Robert Carlyle, Jennifer Carpenter, Anna Nicole Smith, Kristen Connolly, Alexander Poe