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Weekend Preview: Crowded Indie Box Office, from 'For Ellen' to 'Detropia'

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood September 6, 2012 at 5:07PM

Critical response to the array this weekend's new indie releases is mostly tepid, with star-packed "The Words" and "Bachelorette" scoring lowest and docs "Detropia" and "Beauty is Embarassing" ranking as Indiewire's top picks...
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Hello I Must Be Going
'Hello I Must Be Going'

Critics' responses to this weekend's new indie releases were tepid. Star-packed "The Words" and "Bachelorette" scored lowest while docs "Detropia" and "Beauty is Embarassing" ranked as Indiewire's top picks. Also arriving this weekend: Paul Dano in "For Ellen," Melanie Lynskey and Christopher Abbott in "Hello I Must Be Going," Geoffrey Rush in "The Eye of the Storm" and Ira Sachs' "Keep the Lights On."

On the other hand, there's a tantalizing week-long run of "Indiana Jones and The Raiders of the Lost Ark: The IMAX Experience" starting September 7 in select IMAX theaters throughout the country. Here are details.

Trailers and reviews for these films and more below:

"For Ellen" Tribeca Film, US | DIR: So Yong Kim CAST: Paul Dano, Jo Heder, Jena Malone, Margarita Levieva, Shay Mandigo | 64% Fresh | Caryn James: "It is Dano’s’ performance that carries us through to the film’s eloquent, wrenching end."

"Hello I Must Be Going" Oscilloscope, US | DIR: Todd Louiso CAST: Melanie Lynskey, Christopher Abbott, Blythe Danner, Julie White | 63% Fresh | Lynskey talks to Indiewire | THR: "A credibly drawn central character is trapped inside a half-cooked dramatic stew in Hello I Must Be Going."

"Detropia"
"Detropia"
"Detropia" Doc, US | DIR: Heidi Ewing, Rachel Grady | 80% Fresh | Indiewire: "With its provocative tone, the documentary turns its subject into a grim foreign object. Detroit becomes symbolic of American deterioration at large and its advocacy stems from the shock of watching the American dream unravel in the face of ignorance."

"Beauty is Embarrassing" Doc, US | DIR: Neil Berkeley | ThePlaylist: "Such a warm, laugh-out-loud charmer of a documentary, thanks entirely to its subject, the wild and wonderful Wayne White, that it leaves you wondering, just where has this delightful man been all this time?"

"Keep the Lights On" Music Box, US | DIR: Ira Sachs CAST: Thure Lindhardt, Zachary Booth, Julianne Nicholson, Souléymane Sy Savané, Paprika Steen | 88% Fresh | ThePlaylist: "There’s no melodrama here, just a moving and totally engrossing story of two men in love."

"Bachelorette" RADiUS-TWC, US | DIR: Leslye Headland CAST: Kirsten Dunst, Isla Fisher, Lizzy Caplan, James Marsden, Adam Scott | 52% Rotten | Roger Moore: "A serious squandering of major league movie talent." | ThePlaylist says it's "The Movie For Anyone Who Wished 'Bridesmaids' Was More Like 'The Hangover.'"

The Words
"The Words" CBS Films, US | DIR: Brian Klugman, Lee Sternthal CAST: Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Irons, Dennis Quaid, Olivia Wilde, Zoe Saldana | 18% Rotten | Star Tribune: "'The Words' leaves nothing to the imagination, smothering all these storylines in narration that spells out the actions we're seeing or emotions we could infer for ourselves."

"The Inbetweeners" Wrekin Hill, UK | DIR: Ben Palmer CAST: Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison, Joe Thomas | 64% Fresh | Variety: "Brit sitcom The Inbetweeners, which tracked the travails of four male misfits in their last years at high school, makes a satisfying leap to the bigscreen."

"The Eye of the Storm" Sycamore Entertainment, AUS | DIR: Fred Schepisi CAST: Geoffrey Rush, Charlotte Rampling, Judy Davis, Dustin Clare, Colin Friels | 62% Fresh | Village Voice: "Its portrait of the grotesque über-privileged has considerable bite, bracingly reveling in the greed, selfishness, bitterness, jealousy, neurosis, detachment, and hunger for power and sex."

This article is related to: Weekend Preview, Reviews, Reviews, Trailers, Box Office


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.