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Limited and VOD Releases: Hours of Entertainment

June 30th, 2017

The Little Hours

It is not a great week for limited releases, as there are none that are expected to earn any measure of mainstream success. Okja is earning the loudest buzz, but it is playing on Netflix, so its box office chances are close to zero. The Little Hours has the best cast and its reviews are over 80% positive, but black comedies rarely do well in theaters. Finally, The B-Side is earning some of the best reviews, but documentaries rarely escape the art house circuit.

13 Minutes - Reviews
A drama about the real life Elser, who tried to assassinate Adolf Hitler, but was late by 13 minutes. The reviews are good, but not great, and limited releases usually need great reviews.

The B-Side - Reviews
A biographical documentary about Elsa Dorfman, who has been a photographer for 35 years, but who is nearing retirement. The reviews are amazing and it is directed by Errol Morris, who is one of the few documentarians with enough name recognition to draw in audiences by himself.

Dayveon - Reviews
An African-American boy is drawn into gang life after the death of his older brother. The reviews are good, but not good enough to thrive in limited release.

The Hole (a.k.a. Le Trou) - Reviews
The latest re-release from Rialto is a French classic about a group of inmates planning a prison break. Surprisingly, it hasn’t been released on Blu-ray here, but hopefully that is about to change.

The Little Hours - Reviews
After reading the plot description, I think this film is art house Nunsploitation. The film has an impressive cast and the reviews are right on the border between good and good enough. Unfortunately, dark comedies rarely do well at the box office, as the target audience is simply too small. I, on the other hand, will likely pre-order this when it become available.

Mali Blues - Reviews
A documentary about the music scene in Mali, which has to deal with persecution by the religious extremists in the area. There are only three reviews, which is normally not enough to be included here, but all three are positive.

Marie Curie - Reviews
A biopic of Marie Curie. The reviews are great, but there are not enough of them to suggest it will thrive in limited release.

Okja - Reviews
Video on Demand
The latest from Joon-ho Bong, who previously made Snowpiercer and The Host. It is about... I’m not sure how to explain this. If you like the director’s previous films and you have a Netflix account, then watch this movie right now.

Pop Aye - Reviews
A road trip involving an architect and an elephant trailing across Thailand to get to the farm they both grew up on. That’s a setup that will catch your eye. Furthermore, the reviews are excellent, so the execution lives up to the premise.

The Reagan Show - Reviews
A documentary about Reagan and how he was an actor before being a politician. It’s timely, as the current president is best know for being a reality TV star. The reviews are great, but I’m not sure audiences want this reminder right now. Escapism might be more their thing.

Reset - Reviews
A Chinese film about a research scientist who just developed a method for time travel. Her son is then kidnapped and killed, so she goes back in time to stop the kidnapping and has to team up with an army of her time traveling selves to save her son. The critics mostly agree than the premise is great, but the execution is flawed.

The Skyjacker’s Tale - Reviews
A documentary about Ishmael Muslim Ali, who was convicted of being the leader of a mass murder in the 1970s. He maintained his innocence and went so far as to hijack a plane and fly it to Cuba. The reviews are mixed, which will likely prove fatal for its box office chances.

Secondary VOD Releases:
2:22 - Reviews - Video on Demand
Darkness Rising - Reviews - Video on Demand
Inconceivable - No Reviews - Video on Demand
Only three secondary VOD releases. One of them has no reviews and one of them has no positive reviews, leaving 2:22 as the “best” of a weak selection.

Filed under: Limited Releases, Elser, Okja, Dayveon, The Little Hours, Darkness Rising, The B-Side, The Reagan Show, 2:22, The Skyjacker’s Tale, Inconceivable, Pop Aye, Mali Blues, Maria Sklodowska Curie, Le Trou, Ni Shi Ying Jiu, Errol Morris, Joon-ho Bong, Elsa Dorfman