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Quality Limited Releases are not Entirely Absent

January 7th, 2011

If you are interested in winning Oscars, you are a week late. Since its too late to go for Oscars, and the competition in the limited release front is so strong, this time of year tends to be soft when it comes to quality limited releases. However, it's not all bleak, and there's one or two that are winning over critics or have a shot at cracking $1 million at the box office.

The Absent - No Reviews
A film with two of the three Zima sisters, Vanessa and Yvonne. The film stars Bryan Kirkwood as Vincent, a science teacher at Liberty High School with a dark past, and a disturbed twin, Oscar. When Vincent enters an inappropriate relationship with one of his students, Oscar decides to protect his secret by getting rid of the problem, and any who knows, and any witnesses, etc. There are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes for this ultra-low-budget affair, but you can find a few others online, most of which are mixed to positive. The Absent is already playing On Demand, while it starts its theatrical run tonight in Seattle.

No One Killed Jessica - No Reviews
Not your typical Indian film. This one is a serious drama about the true story of a model hired to be a bartender at a party. She was killed by the son of a prominent politician, who killed her because she refused to serve him a drink after hours. When it seems his connections will protect him from justice, the murdered girl's sister and a reporter team up to ensure that doesn't happen. Sadly, there are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but this is true of most Bollywood films. It is opening in a lot of theaters, 48 of them, which could be enough to reach $1 million in total. However, it's not the usual Bollywood musical, which means it might have a harder time finding an audience with this niche market.

Phil Ochs: There But For Fortune - Reviews
So far this film is earning a perfect Tomatometer Score. Granted, it only has ten reviews so far, but that's still impressive for this time of year. It's a documentary about singer / songwriter Phil Ochs, who recorded eight albums in his career, which was cut short by mental health issues, and eventually suicide. Those interested in his music, or of the protest movements of the 1960s in general, should be very interested in seeing this film. Even if you've never heard of Phil Ochs, it is worth checking out. Phil Ochs: There But For Fortune opened on Wednesday at the IFC Center in New York City.

The Time That Remains - Reviews
A semi-autobiographical tale of an "Israeli-Arab" family, that is to say, an Arab family who choose to stay in Israel after its founding in 1948. It looks at the family's history from that moment to today with equal parts personal stories and black comedy. The film is earning very good reviews, reviews that are right on the border of being good enough to thrive in limited release. The Time That Remains opens tonight at the IFC Center in New York City.


Filed under: Limited Releases, Phil Ochs: There but for Fortune, The Absent, The Time That Remains, No One Killed Jessica