Can a musical or a CGI rabbit break the streak of horror movies dominating the box office?
There’s a lot of possibility in the air this weekend. Musicals are going through a renaissance lately, and In the Heights has tremendous pedigree: an adaptation of a hit Broadway show, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, and a dazzling visual style from Crazy Rich Asians director John M. Chu. It may be just the start of summer, but I can see this film already jockeying for Academy Award season honors.
It will have plenty of competition, though, as this weekend is packed with limited release options and Home Theatrical offerings to choose from.
In the Heights (Also on HBO Max)
The scent of a cafecito caliente hangs in the air just outside of the 181st Street subway stop. The likeable, magnetic bodega owner Usnavi saves every penny from his daily grind as he hopes, imagines and sings about a better life.
Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway
Thomas and Bea are now married and living with Peter and his rabbit family. Bored of life in the garden, Peter goes to the big city, where he meets shady characters and ends up creating chaos for the whole family.
Akilla’s Escape (Also on VOD)
In a crime-noir about the urban child-soldier, Akilla Brown captures a fifteen-year-old Jamaican boy in the aftermath of an armed robbery. Over one gruelling night, Akilla confronts a cycle of generational violence he thought he escaped.
Despite living together, Asia barely interacts with her daughter Vika. Their routine is shaken when Vika’s health deteriorates rapidly. Asia must step in and become the mother Vika so desperately needs
Domino: Battle of the Bones
Domino: Battle of the Bones is a feel-good comedy about an elderly black man who teams up with his awkward, white step-grandson to defeat his rival in a domino tournament.
A PhD student ties unusual tremors in Los Angeles to rogue scientists, who will weaponize Nikola Tesla’s secrets and cause massive earthquakes, if they can only find his lost notebook.
Holler (Also on VOD)
To pay for her education, and the chance of a better life, a young woman joins a dangerous scrap metal crew.
The House Next Door: Meet the Blacks 2
When best selling author Carl Black moves his family back to his childhood home, he must team up with oddball neighbors to do battle with a pimp, who may or may not be an actual vampire.
A Perfect Enemy (Also on VOD)
A successful architect is approached on his trip to the Paris Airport by a chatty girl. Although the meeting seems fortuitous, a twist transforms the encounter into something much more sinister and criminal.
After reluctantly agreeing to move in to a senior’s home, a woman encounters a clique of mean-spirited women and an amorous widower.
A New York Times travel writer comes to Tel Aviv after suffering a tragedy. The energy of the city and his relationship with a younger man brings him back to life.
Jalikattu (Alamo on Demand)
Deep in the forests that dominate the South Indian state of Kerala, life rolls along at the same pace that it has for decades. However, in this rural town, the monotony is about to be shattered by the act of one stubborn buffalo who’s not prepared to meet his maker. When this magnificent beast escapes the chopping block, it sends an entire region into panic as they scramble to subdue him before he destroys everything they’ve built.
Imprisoned by the Soviets. Orphaned by the Holocaust. Elected Prime Minister. Crowned peacemaker by the Nobel Prize Committee. Haunted by the Lebanon War. Menachem Begin was a pillar of the State of Israel and a tireless fighter for the Jewish people. He was, at the same time, a controversial leader.
Take Me Somewhere Nice
It’s one debacle after another for Alma (newcomer Sara Luna Zorić). When her long-estranged father is hospitalized in his native Bosnia, a not-quite-headstrong young woman leaves her home in The Netherlands to visit him. When she lands at the airport with a few Bosnian phrases and a new dress, her distracted older cousin Emir neglects to drive her to the hospital, preferring to hang out with his buddy Denis, “who has a girlfriend, so don’t even think about it.”
Who Will Start Another Fire (Kino Marquee)
Who Will Start Another Fire is a collection of nine films by emerging filmmakers from underrepresented communities around the world, presented by the new distribution initiative Dedza Films.
Video on Demand
Marcos is an experienced nurse who works the night shift of a private clinic. He is successful and professional, though it is soon revealed that he uses his position to help suffering patients find early peace. A new nurse in the clinic, Gabriel, shakes the sector: he is young, intelligent, beautiful, and seduces everyone. He soon deciphers Marcos’ secret and the clinic becomes a battle of wits and seduction. Marcos retracts until he discovers that Gabriel also dabbles in euthanasia, though for different reasons. This revelation forces him to confront Gabriel and Marcos knows that only by exposing his own true identity will he be able to stop him.
Single father and former Marine Kyle Snowden (Tyrese Gibson) must save his daughter and other hostages from a dangerous criminal who has trapped them inside a neighborhood store owned by Kyle’s polarizing stepfather, Congressman Sam Nelson (John Malkovich).
Wish Dragon (Netflix)
Din, a working-class college student with big dreams but small means, and Long, a cynical but all-powerful dragon capable of granting wishes, set off on a hilarious adventure through modern day Shanghai in pursuit of Din’s long-lost childhood friend, Lina. Their journey forces them to answer some of life’s biggest questions – because when you can wish for anything, you have to decide what really matters.