It's around this time every summer that the major blockbusters have done their thing and the multiplexes start to feel stale. Another Mummy movie? A Kevin Costner political comedy? Meh and meh. And that's where the Indie Spotlight comes in! We're here every Friday to tell you what's opening beyond the multiplexes, out in the art houses and fringe theaters, to remind you that there are alternatives to the flicks opening on 3,000 screens.

This week sees the release of five indie films: America the Beautiful, Frozen River, In Search of a Midnight Kiss, Love and Honor, and Sixty Six. The scoop on each of them is below. If they're not opening where you live, make a note to keep an eye out for 'em later.

Frozen River
What it is: A drama set at the border between Quebec and New York, where a woman helps people immigrate illegally.
What they're saying: The film premiered to wide acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Grand Jury Prize and where Cinematical's James Rocchi declared it excellent. At Rotten Tomatoes, 81% of the critics agree with Rocchi.
Where it's playing: New York City (Angelika Film Center, Lincoln Plaza Cinemas) and Los Angeles (The Landmark, Laemmle Sunset 5, Town Center 5 in Encino, Playhouse 7 in Pasadena, Edwards Westpark 8 in Irvine).
Official site: Sony Classics.


In Search of a Midnight Kiss
What it is: A romantic comedy set on New Year's Eve, with two misanthropes meeting up and potentially having each other to smooch when the clock strikes 12.
What they're saying: Nearly everyone at Rotten Tomatoes adores it, with comparisons to Woody Allen popping up here and there. People who saw it at Tribeca can't stop talking about it. We've got the trailer for it here.
Where it's playing: New York City (IFC Center and Clearview Cinema).
Official site: Right here, with a handy list of when it's opening in other cities. (Don't fret, Columbus, Ohio! Your day will come Sept. 12!)

America the Beautiful
What it is: Remember how Americans are mostly overweight, and yet are also dangerously obsessed with body image and beauty? This is a documentary about that.
What they're saying: "Hard-hitting," "level-headed," and "impassioned" are among the terms being used at Rotten Tomatoes, where 80% of the reviews are positive.
Where it's playing: New York City (Cinema Village).
Official site: Here you go, with a partial list of upcoming cities.

Sixty-Six
What it is: Set in 1966, it's a British comedy about a Jewish kid who's dismayed to learn his bar mitzvah is the same day as the World Cup Final.
What they're saying: The Rotten Tomatoes critics are almost evenly split on whether it's hilarious, too sad, or too lightweight.
Where it's playing: New York City (CC Village East Cinemas, UA 64th & 2nd).
Official site: Here, with a list of future release dates.

Love and Honor
What it is: A quiet Japanese melodrama about a samurai and his wife keeping secrets from one another.
What they're saying: Only six reviews have popped up at Rotten Tomatoes, but five are positive. All mention that the film is "deliberately paced" (or words to that effect), which to some viewers will mean "slow."
Where it's playing: New York City (Two Boots Pioneer Theater); opens in Houston next week.
Official site: It's in English.