Follow us on

Thank You for Supporting Limited Releases

March 17th, 2006

A busy week with nine films featured here. Releases range from dozens of theatres for Don't Trip, He Ain't Through With Me Yet to lone theatres for Fetching Cody, and practically every point in-between. One side note, usually this column is published after the top five predictions, but with the contests I've decided to switch the two. I'll publish the other column as soon as the entry period ends (10:00 a.m. Pacific time).

Beyond Honor - Reviews
The film looks at an Egyptian-American woman who is torn between the traditions of her family and the new life she wants to lead in American. Many films have dealt with culture-clash, both dramatically and comedically, but rarely in such a brutal fashion. Beyond Honor opens tonight at the City Cinemas Village East.

Church Ball - Reviews
Typical underdog story for Mormons. If other recent movies aimed at the same crowd are any indication, this basketball movie will struggle in Utah and have almost no crossover appeal. Church Ball opens 40 theatres tonight, but will most likely not expand any further than that.

Don't Come Knocking - Reviews
Sam Shepard stars as Howard Spence, an actor whose life has started to crumble under the weight of his own vices. One day during the middle of shooting his latest western he leaves the set and tries to right some of his wrongs. Director Wim Wenders and Sam Shepard worked together on Paris, Texas more than 20 years ago, and that film remains near the top of either man's career. This film isn't earning nearly as much critical acclaim, but there are still a few things going for it, like the cinematography. Don't Come Knocking opens tonight in 6 theatres, including a couple in the Laemmles chain in the Los Angeles area.

Don't Trip, He Ain't Through With Me Yet - Reviews
The widest limited release of the weekend, if you don't count Find Me Guilty. The film features Steve Harvey doing a sanitized version of his stand-up routine for the church crowd. However, early reviews suggest that he is not as effective here and the film will likely be better off once it hits the home market. Don't Trip, He Ain't Through With Me Yet opens tonight in more than 5-dozen theatres before hitting DVD in just over a month.

Fetching Cody - Review
If you've never heard of this movie, don't feel bad, after all, it is Canadian. We make some great movies up here, but we simply don't know how to promote them. The film stars Jay Baruchel as Art and Sarah Lind as Cody, a pair of junkies who live in the Eastside, the worst part of Vancouver. Hell, it's arguably the worst part of all of Canada. When Cody falls into a coma from an apparent drug overdose, Art finds shelter with a fellow homeless person, Harvey, who just happens to have a working time machine. This is the first film for writer / director David Ray, and at times it shows, but enough of the film works to warrant a recommendation, especially the chemistry between the two leads. Fetching Cody opens tonight at the Empire Granville 7 Cinemas in Vancouver, Canada.

Summer Storm - Reviews
A German film about two rowers who have won several championships for their local rowing club. They are both looking forward to the summer and many races, but a race against a team of athletic gay men causes problems when prejudices and secrets are exposed. This film is much better than its Tomatometer rating would indicate as the negative reviews are not overly negative while the positive reviews tend to be a little more enthusiastic. Summer Storm opens tonight in two theatres including the Act 1 and 2 in Berkley, California.

Take My Eyes - Reviews
The best reviewed new movie of the week and the winner of seven Goyas (the Spainish equivalent to the Oscars). The film takes on a complex and difficult subject in domestic abuse, and does so in a way that is far superior to most films that deal with this subject. Take My Eyes opens tonight at the Angelika Film Center and others in New York City.

Thank You For Smoking - Reviews
One of the best-reviewed new films of the week, this is also the limited release earning the most buzz and I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if it tops the per theatre charts over the weekend. Aaron Eckhart plays a tobacco lobbyist, which puts him right up there with Nazi Scientist in terms of popular opinion. The only real problem with the movie is it tries too hard to be fair and balanced; sometimes one side is wrong while the other is right. His attack on cheese as a bigger threat than cigarettes is ridiculous because you have to abuse fatty foods in order for it to be unhealthy; on the other hand, cigarettes are the only legal product I can think of that are deadly when used as the manufacturer intended. Anyhoo, I'll get off my soapbox now. Thank You For Smoking opens in five theatre tonight, including the Arclight Cinemas in Los Angeles.

The Zodiac - Reviews
Movies about real life serial killers tend to be cheap, exploitive crap, to be completely honest. An excuse to combine sadistic violence and gratuitous nudity in an attempt to make a quick buck. It is nice to see that this film focuses more on the police trying to catch the killer and the psychological price they have to pay. However, almost nothing about this film works: Its pacing, its dialogue, its editing, etc. The Zodiac opens tonight in 10 theatres, mostly in the region where the killings took place.


Filed under: Limited Releases, Thank You For Smoking, Don't Come Knocking, Sommersturm, The Zodiac