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Tales from Limited Releases

August 13th, 2010

There are only four limited releases on this week's list, but all four have a chance at finding success, even if it is with niche market audiences. Peepli Live is for fans of Indian films, Neshoba is for fans of documentaries, and Tales from Earthsea is for fans of Anime. Meanwhile, Animal Kingdom is likely the film with the best shot at earning some slice of mainstream success.

Animal Kingdom - Reviews
An Australian film about organized crime in Melbourne. It stars a few actors that are known Stateside, Guy Pearce leading that list, but it will have to rely on word-of-mouth for the most part. And for the most part this is very good news, as reviews are excellent. Also, they are plentiful. Not only does the large number of reviews make its score more significant by reducing the margin of error, statistically speaking, but it also signifies that the film is generating enough buzz that a larger number of critics have taken note. Given this, and other factors, it is the film most likely to succeed on this week's list. Animal Kingdom opens tonight in four theaters, two in New York City and two in the Los Angeles area.

Peepli Live - Reviews
The latest film from India has a lot in common with the average Indian film, including its "large for a limited release" theater count. However, it is also been reviewed by nearly a dozen critics on Rotten Tomatoes, which is quite a sharp contrast to most such films, which are usually ignored by critics here. Plus, it is earning 82% positive reviews and that should help its word-of-mouth. I don't think it will find mainstream success here, but it might do better than average. Peepli Live opens tonight in 65 theaters and might start out well enough to earn $1 million in total. However, these films are very, very tricky to predict.

Neshoba: The Price of Freedom - Reviews
A documentary about the murder of three civil rights workers, which also inspired Mississippi Burning, which earned good reviews when it opened more than 2 decades ago. This film is earning better reviews, so far. With only 8 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, it is a little too soon to judge where it will end up. If it can keep up this level of positive reviews, then it could do quite well for a documentary. Neshoba opens tonight at the Cinema Village in New York City.

Tales from Earthsea - Reviews
Disney continues to try to push Anime in the North American market. However, while there are a number of enthusiasts for the art form here, it still hasn't been able to find breakout success. The studio has been working with Studio Ghibli, which has helped a lot of people discover such films as Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, etc. However, this film is earning significantly weaker reviews than the studio's past offerings and its box office numbers will likely also lag behind. Tales from Earthsea opens tonight in five theaters in New York City, Los Angles, San Francisco, Seattle, and Honolulu.

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Filed under: Limited Releases, Gedo Senki (Tales from Earthsea), Animal Kingdom, Peepli Live, Neshoba: The Price of Freedom