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Limited Releases - Hard Time Picking Just One

April 14th, 2006

Usually there is one film that looks like it could breakout of its limited release and score some mainstream success, maybe. Some weeks no film has a real chance at escaping its art house origins. This week, there are three such films. However, while this is a bounty for moviegoers, the competition could hurt the films.

Hard Candy - Reviews
Early reviews for this film were amazing, but have since dropped down to the merely good. This is one of the movies that has a real shot at mainstream success, but the word-of-mouth might not be enough for it to escape its roots. On the other hand, it seems almost a certainty that the film will be a hit on the home market, especially if it gets an Unrated DVD release. Hard Candy opens tonight at the Arclight Cinemas in Los Angeles and the Angelika Film Center in New York City.

Herbie Hancock: Possibilities - Reviews
A documentary on the making of Herbie Hancock's latest album. While fans will surely enjoy the music, it is not in-depth enough to be fully satisfying and most people will be better off just buying the CD. Herbie Hancock: Possibilities opens tonight in two theatres including the Quad Cinema in New York City.

Humko Deewana Kar Gaye - No Reviews
The latest Bollywood musical is opening in more than three dozen theatres, but to almost no publicity. It seems like the attempt to mainstream these films has failed and they have slipped further into a niche market. Although it is also true that their popularity in India has dropped off substantially mainly due to flooding the market with a substandard product.

Kinky Boots - Reviews
Not the best reviewed new release of the week, but it's the one I'm looking forward to seeing the most. Granted, I do have a very British sense of humor and that will definitely mean I will appreciate the film more than others will. As for the film's chances, while it hasn't floored critics, it could still earn strong word of mouth and it should have a populous feel, but again, it will likely have to wait till the home market to see the majority of its business. Kinky Boots opens in nine theatres in New York, Los Angeles, as well as other cities in southern California.

Look Both Ways - Reviews
This Australian film was nominated for 11 AFI Awards winning four of them making it one of the biggest winners last year as only Little Fish won more. However, when that latter film opened, it didn't exactly have a long theatrical run and neither is Look Both Ways. The film opens tonight in two theatres in New York City, including the Angelika Film Center.

Mountain Patrol: Kikexili - Reviews
The best rated movie of the week, this film deals with a group of men from various tribes in Tibet who band together to stop poachers from killing all the rare Tibetan antelopes. There are many reasons to check out this film, including the amazing cinematography, the gripping and powerful storyline, etc. But as a foreign language film, it will likely struggle to find an audience during its theatrical run. Mountain Patrol: Kikexili opens tonight in four theatres including the Nuart Theatre.

La Mujer de Mi Hermano - Reviews
The widest release of the week, it is also one of the weakest with a Tomatometer reading of less than 20% positive. A lot of critics are comparing the film to a bad Spanish soap opera, but it was the highest grossing R-rated movie in Mexico last year. Can it translate that box office success when it opens here? Probably not. Especially when you take into account how difficult it is to open a film in the dreaded "Select Cities." La Mujer de Mi Hermano opens tonight in just over 200 theaters, but that is likely as wide as it will go.

The Notorious Bettie Page - Reviews
Yet another film with definite populous appeal but with reviews that are a little weak to escape limited release and earn widespread success. This biopic of Bettie Page is well done, for the most part, but doesn't delve deep enough to satisfy those looking for a revealing look at the world's more famous pinup model. Also, for a movie about a woman who shock conventions in the 1950s, this film lacks an edge and doesn't sufficiently deal with the controversy she caused. The Notorious Bettie Page opens tonight in 20 theatres, mostly in the southern California area.

Preaching to the Choir - Reviews
Two brothers, one grew up to be a gansta rapper, the other a priest. When they reunite, at first tensions are high, but through the healing power of Gospel music, they learn that family is the most important thing. First of all, the film is even more cliched than my synopsis makes it sound. However, the music is good and fans of the genre should at least enjoy it for that, (although I recommend picking up the soundtrack instead). Preaching to the Choir opens in more than a 140 theatres tonight, mostly in the south.

The Sisters - Reviews
Based on a play that was in turn based on Anton Chekov's, "The Three Sisters," this film has a lot of talent, but not much to show for it. It's overly emotional, overwrought, over done. The Sisters opens in three theatre tonight, including two in the Laemmles chain in California.


Filed under: Limited Releases, La mujer de mi hermano, Kinky Boots, The Notorious Bettie Page, Hard Candy, On the One, Hum Ko Deewana Kar Gaye, Look Both Ways, The Sisters