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Very Limited Releases

November 2nd, 2007

No a big list for limited releases, and its downright tiny without the trio of a Canadian films. Not only that, but none of the films opening in more than a handful of theaters with Surviving My Mother being the widest release at just four theaters.

The Bodybuilder and I - No Reviews
A documentary about 59-year old Bill Friedman and his attempt to regain the World Champion Title in Bodybuilding in the age 50-60 category. The documentary was written and directed by Bryan Friedman, his estranged son, and the two have barely spoken in 20 years. The combination of the two stories is an interesting mix and provides enough humor and drama to draw in moviegoers, so much so that it won a couple awards in film festivals in its native Canada. The Bodybuilder and I opens tonight in three theaters in Canada: the Granville in Vancouver, Canada Square in Toronto, and Bytowne in Ottawa.

Darfur Now - Reviews
An advocacy documentary about the ongoing genocide that tries to raise awareness and get people to do something about the problem. Unfortunately, while critics are certainly applauding the film's message, they are not happy with its overall effectiveness. Even so, this is an important film and should be seen by many, many people. Darfur Now opens tonight in three theaters, (two in New York City and one in Los Angeles), before expanding next Friday.

Diva - Reviews
A French thriller from the early 1980s that has not lost any of its impact in the 25 years since it was first released. In fact, it is earning the best reviews of any film of the week. It is also only opening in one theater, the Film Forum in New York City. If you live there, it is definitely worth checking out.

Fat Girls - Reviews
A common story that could be summed up as, "High school is hell." In the movie, writer / director Ash Christian stars as Rodney Miller, a gay student trying to survive high school in Texas with the help of his best friend, Sabrina Thomas, whose Rubenesque figure has also made her a social outcast. Reviews are not strong, but there enough here that it will be worth a rental when it comes out on DVD. In the meantime, Fat Girls opens tonight in two theaters, including the Quad Cinema in New York City.

Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten - Reviews
A documentary about the Clash front man, Joe Strummer. The film looks at his career as a musician and later as an actor, but mostly looks at his influence, an influence that is still felt today. Any fans of the band, or just of punk music in general, should check out this movie A.S.A.P. Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten opens tonight at the IFC Center in New York City and the Nuart Theatre in Los Angeles.

Love and Honor - No Reviews
A Japanese film about a blind samurai and his wife and is the third film in Yôji Yamada's samurai trilogy. The film earned excellent reviews in its home nation and won three of the thirteen awards it was nominated for at the Awards of the Japanese Academy, the top film prizes in Japan. Anyone who has seen the previous two films, The Twilight Samurai and The Hidden Blade, should check out this film. Even if you haven't seen those two movies, you should check out this film. Love and Honor opens tonight at the ImaginAsian in New York City for a one week run only.

Park - Reviews
An ensemble comedy featuring 10 characters in one park over the course of a lunch hour. The film is earning excellent reviews, but is not an Oscar contender, while its main competition at art house cinemas at this time of year are. On the one hand, should the art house crowds want something lighter, it could benefit. On the other hand, they could ignore this film for more serious fare. Park opens tonight at the Laemmles Music Hall in Beverly Hills.

Surviving My Mother - No Reviews
Made by the same director / director team as Mambo Italiano, the film stars Ellen David as Clara, whose mother's dying regret was never getting to know her daughter. This spurs her on to get to know her own adult daughter, (played by Caroline Dhavernas, who is probably best known to audiences for her role on Wonderfalls), but the results are not pretty. Surviving My Mother opens tonight in a handful of theaters in Canada, mostly in Quebec but also the Cumberland Four - Alliance Atlantis Cinemas in Toronto.

The Tracey Fragments - No Reviews
Ellen Page is going to be huge. Her latest film is a Canadian production directed by Bruce McDonald, who previously directed Hard Core Logo and Dance Me Outside. Here she plays 15-year old Tracey who is trying to find her lost brother, who thinks he's a dog. The film has earned a handful of awards from a couple film festivals, including the most innovative film at this year's Berlin Film Festival. The Tracey Fragments opens tonight in Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal in Canada and has a couple of festival appearances scheduled for the United States, but so far no theatrical release. It is worth checking out, even if you have to wait till the home market before you get a chance to see it.


Filed under: Limited Releases, Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten, Surviving My Mother, Darfur Now, Diva, Bushi no ichibun, The Tracey Fragments, Fat Girls, Park, The Bodybuilder and I