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Limited and VOD Releases: Getting Personal

March 10th, 2017

Personal Shopper

It is not a particularly busy week for limited releases, but there are a few that are earning good reviews and louder buzz. My Scientology Movie, Personal Shopper, and Raw all fit that description, but Personal Shopper probably has the best shot at box office success.

Actor Martinez - Reviews
An actor, Arthur Martinez, hires two filmmakers, Mike Ott and Nathan Silver, to make a movie he can star in. However, as they change his film, their relationship gets more difficult. It is one of best-reviewed films of the week, but there are several other films with good reviews that are also earning louder buzz, so it will likely slip between the cracks.

Badrinath Ki Dulhania - No Reviews
A Bollywood movie about two people who disagree on everything, but still fall in love. Like most Bollywood movies, there are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, so it is hard to judge the movie.

Betting on Zero - Reviews
A documentary about Herbalife and the Hedge Fund Manager who tried to expose them as a pyramid scheme and bring them down. Like a couple of other entries on this week’s list, there are not many reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but all of them are positive.

Brimstone - Reviews
Video on Demand
Dakota Fanning stars as a frontier woman who is on the run from her past. The reviews are terrible with most critics complaining about the brutal treatment the female characters have to endure. It tries to come across as, “Female character overcomes adversity.” However, the film is shot in a way that it feels like you are supposed to connect with the abusers instead. On the other hand, it is well-made in a technical sense.

Manhattan - Reviews
One of Woody Allen’s best movies is getting a re-release in limited release this week. It is worth watching, but fans of the director likely already have it on Blu-ray.

My Scientology Movie - Reviews
Video on Demand
A documentary by Louis Theroux and John Dower about Scientology. While making the movie, Scientology started following them around and filming them making the movie. Documentaries rarely do well enough to earn any measure of mainstream success, but the buzz surrounding this film is loud enough that is has a real chance. On a side note, not too many years ago, this movie would never get made, because no one would risk going up against Scientology. Now it isn’t even the first documentary to tackle Scientology.

The Ottoman Lieutenant - Reviews
A romance film set during World War I in Turkey. The reviews are awful and its box office chances are nearly zero.

Personal Shopper - Reviews
Kristen Stewart plays the titular personal shopper. She is dealing with the death of her twin brother and buys the home he died in in hopes of making contact with his spirit. This is one of the bigger limited releases of the week, while its reviews are close to the 80% positive level it usually takes for a limited release to thrive.

Raw - Reviews
A 16-year old vegetarian has to eat raw meat as part of a hazing ritual at her veterinarian school. However, this causes her to develop a craving for raw meat, and not just any meat, human flesh. This film’s reviews are over 90% positive; however, horror films rarely do well in limited release. There are a few exceptions, so its chances of earning some measure of mainstream success are not zero, but it is close to zero. The film should do well on the home market, on the other hand.

Revolution - New Art for a New World - Reviews
A documentary about the Russian avanta garde art movement. There are not many reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but all five of them are positive. Unfortunately, documentaries almost never escape the art house circuit.

The Sense of an Ending - Reviews
This is one of the bigger releases on this week’s list and the film has more star power than most limited releases can only dream of. In the movie, Jim Broadbent plays a man who inherits the journal of a woman he once knew and this causes him to rethink his past. Usually I like to see a Tomatometer Score of 80% limited release and this film isn’t quite there. Perhaps the star power will help it draw in art house aficionados, but I don’t think it will have long legs.

Uncertain - Reviews
The lives of three men in a really small town in Texas are the focus of this film. There are few reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but so far, all eight are positive.

Secondary VOD Releases:
There are no secondary VOD releases this week.

Filed under: Limited Releases, Manhattan, The Sense of an Ending, Brimstone, Personal Shopper, My Scientology Movie, Raw, Revolution - New Art for a New World, The Ottoman Lieutenant, Badrinath Ki Dulhania, Uncertain, Actor Martinez, Betting on Zero, Woody Allen, Jim Broadbent, Dakota Fanning, Kristen Stewart, Mike Ott, Nathan Silver, John Dower, Louis Theroux, Arthur Martinez