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Killer Limited Releases

June 22nd, 2007

This week's collection of limited releases includes movies about killer sheep, health care that can kill, and guys who get paid to kill. Despite this wide, wide range of subjects, there is one thing that almost all these films have in common -- they are all earning excellent reviews. This week, earning just 75% positive is considered average. Hopefully the competition doesn't hurt the films too much as they deserve to reach wider audiences.

Black Sheep - Reviews
A movie about mutated killer sheep, which can turn their victims into... WERESHEEP! Obviously this is not a movie for everyone, but the horror comedy mix could make it a sleeper hit here. At the very least, it should find a cult audience on the home market. Black Sheep opens tonight in four theaters, mostly in the Los Angeles area, while it should expand over the coming weeks.

Broken English - Reviews
Zoe R. Cassavetes' sophomore effort, which isn't earning as much love as her first film, Men Make Women Crazy Theory. The film isn't earning terrible reviews, but it is barely hit the 60% it needs to be considered overall fresh and given the higher standards fans of art house circuit films demand, this is likely not enough to survive. Broken English opens tonight in seven theaters, roughly half in New York City and the other half in the Los Angeles area.

Colma: The Musical - Reviews
A coming of age story with a gay edge. This musical is earning strong reviews, but it has a niche market appeal and will struggle to expand beyond that. Colma: The Musical opens tonight at the Embarcadero Center Cinemas in San Francisco.

Klimt - Reviews
A biography about artist Gustav Klimt, played by John Malkovich. The film has only been able to earn mixed reviews, and doesn't appear it has what it takes to expand much beyond its start. Klimt opens tonight at the Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago.

Lady Chatterley - Reviews
Based on a novel by D.H. Lawrence, which is one of the most banned books of all time. It is also mentioned in the Tom Lehrer song, Smut. It's amazing to see a novel that was called obscene in so many places turned into a movie that feels so mainstream. As with most films coming out this week, this one is earning strong reviews and should perform well on the art house circuit. Lady Chatterley opens tonight in five theaters, mostly in New York City.

Manufactured Landscapes - Reviews
A Canadian documentary following photographer Edward Burtynsky as he documents the changing landscape and how it is affected by our industrialized world. One of the better reviewed films on this week's list, but it is unlikely to reach a wide audience. Manufactured Landscapes opened on Wednesday at the Film Forum in New York City after playing in Canada previously.

Sicko - Reviews
Another film opening this week that is earning unbelievably strong reviews. This is also one of three films on this week's list that has strong potential for mainstream success. In fact, this film seems destined for mainstream success. There have only been a handful of non-IMAX documentaries to reach $10 million at the US box office, it seems very likely that Sicko will become Micheal Moore's third such film. Sicko opens tonight in one theater while having a sneak peak in 43 theaters on Saturday and then expanding wide next Friday.

White Palms - Reviews
A Hungarian film about a gymnast whose career is cut short due to injury and who then travels to Canada to become a coach. White Palms opened on Wednesday at the Museum of Modern Arts in New York City.

You Kill Me - Reviews
The widest limited release of the week, not counting tomorrow's sneak peak of Sicko. Ben Kingsley stars as Frank, a Hitman for the Polish mob, whose drinking problem starts to affect his job. A strong cast, solid reviews, and an effective and aggressive ad campaign should help the film expand over the coming weeks and earn at least some measure of mainstream success. However, the film's opening theater count of 37 is probably too much, too soon and the film will have to wait until the home market to truly find an audience.

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Filed under: Limited Releases, Sicko, You Kill Me, Broken English, Lady Chatterley, Manufactured Landscapes, Klimt, Black Sheep, Colma: The Musical, Fehér Tenyér