Saturday, October 17, 2009

3700 screens?

I confess that I have a big distaste for absurdly huge opening weekends. Where the Wild Things Are, on 3700+ screens? As excited as I might be (or might have been) about seeing the film, I am certainly going to wait at least a week to let the hubris of that move wash away a little. It's like the guy showing up at the party in a limo. Maybe he's an okay guy, but showing up in a limo is just trying to get attention.

If the demand were somehow there for 3700 screens, then it would make more sense. But does it feel to anyone else like a desperate attempt to cash in early? Why not buy up all the screens and ensure that whoever sees a movie this weekend sees your movie?

In contrast, let me draw your attention to The Adventures of Power. A feature by an old high school friend being released on a super small scale. One week in NYC, one week in LA, one week in Austin, etc. It looks to me like the film is going to build up some momentum and a demand greater than the small screenings can accommodate, then burst on the seen in large enough release to meet the demand. The small shows are parties, events, befitting their relative rarity - not cattle calls like the dozens of screenings of Wild Things this weekend at the local multiplex. Seeing Power is a special event. Go find a screening near you.

On the even smaller release front, Tower 37 was part of a great show on Thursday in New York hosted by Signe Baumane and sponsored by BeFilm. Many of the films were familiar from Woodstock and other venues, but on the new front, I truly enjoyed the Argentinian short El Empleo. There are three other screenings in the coming week, one in North Carolina and two more in NYC. Check them out!

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