CATEGORIES Documentary, Drama, Gay & Lesbian, Independent, New Releases, Columns, Features, Indie Spotlight, Movie News, Columns, New Releases, CinematicalOn a normal weekend, there are usually eight or nine new independent films opening in limited release, compared to three four wide releases. But for Thanksgiving, those numbers switch sides -- the multiplexes will be crowded with Twilights and Bolts and Transporters and Christmases and so forth, while the art houses have only a few new titles arriving.
In other words, there's not much to say in this week's Indie Spotlight, and there won't be any need for a Spotlight next week at all. So enjoy these few limited-release films opening today and next Wednesday: The Betrayal, I Can't Think Straight, Lake City, and Special.
The Betrayal (Nerakhoon)
What it is: A documentary about a family that emigrated to the U.S. after the bombings in their native Laos that occurred during the Vietnam War.
What they're saying: Wow -- all 12 reviews at Rotten Tomatoes are positive. "Lyrical, expansive, unbearably beautiful," etc.
Where it's playing: New York City (IFC Center).
More info: The official website has a list of release dates, most of which are several weeks hence.
What it is: A drama starring Troy Garity as a man who returns to his Southern home and his mom (Sissy Spacek) after a tragedy separated them for many years.
What they're saying: Lake City is a lovely title, but the critics are saying it's all wet, or some other water-related metaphor. With 11 notices at Rotten Tomatoes, only one is positive, the rest indicating that despite Sissy Spacek's good performance, the movie is too serious, contrived, and banal.
Where it's playing: New York City (Quad Cinema).
More info: I can't find an official site anywhere.
What it is: Michael Rapaport stars as a parking enforcement officer who becomes convinced he's a superhero. It's a comedy at first, then turns dramatic in the second half.
What they're saying: This one's been sitting on the shelf for almost three years -- it premiered at Sundance in January 2006 -- and is being released now as part of Magnet's "Six Shooter" film series. (Cool flicks like Timecrimes and Let the Right One In are part of the same program.) The reviews at Rotten Tomatoes are 9 in favor, 6 against.
Where it's playing: New York City (Landmark Sunshine).
More info: Here's the official site. It opens in L.A. next week and might be available now on Comcast's On Demand system.
I Can't Think Straight
What it is: A romantic comedy/drama about two women falling in love in a traditional Middle Eastern society. P.S.: That's a terrible title.
What they're saying: At Rotten Tomatoes it's 2 in favor and 4 against, the consensus being that it's mostly harmless but unsubstantive.
Where it's playing: New York City (Quad Cinemas), Los Angeles (Laemmle Sunset 5).
More info: The official site doesn't offer much, but I do like the song that plays when it loads.