Limited Releases: Holy Cow!

It's a slower week for limited releases, but there are a couple that are earning overwhelmingly positive reviews. Holy Motors is one of them, but while it should do well in art house theaters, its chances at mainstream success is a lot more limited. The Sessions reviews are even better and it has a lot more mainstream appeal. It is never easy for a limited release, but of all of the film's on this week's list, this one has the best shot at the box office.

Codebreaker - Reviews
A biopic about Alan Turing, who was born 100 years ago and became one of the smartest men of the 20th. He helped the Allies win World War II, helped create computers and the very concepts of artificial intelligence. He was also gay during a time when homosexual acts were illegal in the U.K. It aired on TV in its native U.K., but this film is getting a limited theatrical release starting on Wednesday. Check out the official site for details.

The First Time - Reviews
A movie about two high school students who go to different schools who fall in love. There are quite a few young actors in the movie that have some name recognition, but the reviews are only mixed and the target audience isn't known for seeing limited releases. The First Time opens tonight in 16 theaters in select cities.

The Flat - Reviews
Documentarian Arnon Goldfinger's grandmother passed away at the age of 98, he was in charge of going to Tel Aviv and dealing with her possessions. He decided to film this process, in hopes of preserving some mementos for the family. What he finds is much more than that. The film's reviews are good, but not great. And as I've said many times in the past, limited releases generally need reviews are that great to survive. The Flat opens tonight in two theaters, IFC Center and the Lincoln Plaza Cinema, both in New York City.

Holy Motors - Reviews
This film is earning some of the best reviews of the week. It is also one of the hardest films to describe. It has art house written all over it, but while it might do well on the per theater chart, its chances of expanding wide are limited. Holy Motors opened on Wednesday in two theaters in New York City.

Led Zeppelin: Celebration Day - Reviews
Nearly five years ago to the day, the three remaining members of Led Zeppelin, John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant, and Jason Bonham the son of their late drummer, John Bonham, performed a concert. This film captures that performance. It is playing for a very short time (theater listings can be found here) while the CD / DVD / Blu-ray Combo Pack comes out on November.

Nobody Walks - Reviews
Olivia Thirlby stars as Martine, a New York filmmaker who travels to Los Angeles to complete her art film. She lives with a friend of a friend, Julie, and her husband, Peter, and their teenage daughter, Kolt. However, while there, she upsets the balance of the family. The film's reviews are weak at only 38% positive, which will likely prove fatal for the limited release. Nobody Walks opens tonight in two theaters, Sunshine Cinema in New York City and the Laemmles Sunset 5 in Los Angeles.

The Sessions - Reviews
Writer / director Ben Lewin tells an autobiographical story of a 36-year old confined to an iron lung who decides he wants to lose his virginity. The film is earning some of the best reviews of the week and there are some pretty big name actors in the film. Hopefully it will do well enough to earn some measure of mainstream success. Of the films on this week's list, I think one does have the best chance. The Sessions opens tonight in four theaters, split evenly between New York City and the Los Angeles area.

Tai Chi Zero - Reviews
This film was a pretty big hit in its native China, but the reviews here are only mixed. Also, it's not the right genre for limited release, so it will likely struggle. On the other hand, it could do quite well on the home market. Tai Chi Zero opens tonight in 31 theaters in major cities nationwide.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2012-10-19