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Limited and VOD Releases: Can you Spot any Hits?

March 17th, 2017

T2: Trainspotting

Beauty and the Beast scared away most of the wide-release competition and there are not many limited releases either this weekend. T2: Trainspotting is by far the biggest in terms of buzz. We also have a few like Mean Dreams, which have good reviews, but are playing on VOD. Or foreign-language films like Frantz.

After the Storm - Reviews
A father gets a chance to bond with his family after squandering his past success. This is one of the best-reviewed films on this week’s list, but as a foreign-language film, its box office chances beyond the art house circuit are minimal.

The Devil’s Candy - Reviews
Video on Demand
A horror film that is earning more than 90% positive reviews. This would be great news, it if weren’t playing in limited release, as well as on VOD. That said, it likely didn’t cost a lot to make, so it could break even just on its VOD numbers.

Frantz - Reviews
This is the latest from Francois Ozon, a French director with a sizable art-house following here. The movie is set in Germany just after World War I and it is about a woman whose fiancé was killed during the war. A French soldier arrives in town to pay his respects to that fallen soldier and the two connect. The film should do well in the art house circuit, but foreign-language films rarely do well enough to earn mainstream success.

Mean Dreams - Reviews
Video on Demand
A Canadian movie starring Sophie Nelisse, who appears to be at a start of a great career, as well as Bill Paxton, who passed away earlier this year. The film is earning excellent reviews; however, it is also playing on VOD, so its box office chances are weak. That said, if you want to check out a movie and don’t want to go out, this is a great option.

Song to Song - Reviews
Terrence Malick used to direct only one film every decade or so, but each of those films were celebrated. Now he’s directing at a much faster pace, but each film has gone way down in quality. This film’s reviews are barely at the overall positive level. That would be fine for a wide release, but it could prove fatal for a limited release. The pedigree should help it during its opening weekend, but I’m not sure about its legs.

T2: Trainspotting - Reviews
This is by far the biggest limited release of the week; in fact, it was expected to open wide at the beginning of the month. The film’s reviews would be great for a wide release, but they are a little weak for a limited release. On the other hand, the original Trainspotting was a big hit in limited release and that should boost this film’s box office chances. It should be the biggest limited release of the week at the box office.

Taipei Story - Reviews
This Taiwanese film came out in 1985 and is getting a re-release this week. It is about a couple whose relationship is crumbling because the man is clinging to his more glorious past and the woman is looking to the future without concerns for the past. The reviews are 100% positive, so it is a great time to catch it in theaters before it comes out on a Blu-ray Box Set in May.

Tickling Giants - Reviews
A biographical documentary about Baseem Youssef, an Egyptian surgeon who gave up his medical career to become a political satirist. So far it is earning 100% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but documentaries rarely have breakout success at the box office.

Secondary VOD Releases:
Namour - Reviews - Video on Demand
You Can’t Have It - No Reviews - Video on Demand
There’s a third VOD film opening this week, Atomica, but it doesn’t hit the home market until Tuesday. Its reviews suggest it is not worth the wait.

Filed under: Limited Releases, Song to Song, Beauty and the Beast, T2: Trainspotting, Umi yori mo mada fukaku, Frantz, The Devil’s Candy, You Can’t Have It, Mean Dreams, Namour, Tickling Giants, Atomica, Qing mei zhu ma, Terrence Malick, Bill Paxton, Francois Ozon, Sophie Nelisse