The first wide release films of the pandemic hit theaters this weekend.
This week we enter a new milestone of the Covid-19 era: wide release films return to theaters. Last weekend, we knocked on the door as Unhinged and SpongeBob pushed the upper limit of what you could consider a limited release. It still remains to be seen what will count as a wide release with many regions in the US still following some degree of lock-down.
If going to a live theater to see Russell Crowe have a rage aneurysm is not sufficient bait for you to be Hollywood’s guinea pig, rest assured. There are plenty of streaming and Home Theatrical releases coming this week as well.
Wide Release (Aug. 21)
After a confrontation with an unstable man at an intersection, a woman becomes the target of his rage.
Words on Bathroom Walls
Diagnosed with a mental illness halfway through his senior year of high school, a witty, introspective teen struggles to keep it a secret while falling in love with a brilliant classmate who inspires him to not be defined by his condition.
It is the story of the all-black Twenty-Fourth United States Infantry Regiment, and the Houston Riot of 1917.
Cut Throat City
Set after Hurricane Katrina, four boyhood friends out of options reluctantly accept an offer to pull off a dangerous heist in the heart of New Orleans.
Desert One (Also on VOD Aug. 21)
Using new archival sources and unprecedented access, master documentarian Barbara Kopple reveals the story behind one of the most daring rescues in modern US history: a secret mission to free hostages of the 1979 Iranian revolution.
The Pale Door
After a train robbery goes bad, two brothers leading a gang of cowboys must survive the night in a ghost town inhabited by a coven of witches.
*Staff Pick: while this doesn’t look to have the polish of Bone Tomahawk, I am a sucker for westerns with a horror angle.
The Real Exorcist
Sayuri, a coffee shop waitress, uses her supernatural powers to help those who are troubled by spiritual phenomena. She gradually gets involved in serious matters, eventually facing a fierce battle with the devil.
Stage Mother (Also on VOD Aug. 21)
A conservative church choir director inherits her late son’s San Francisco drag club.
You Cannot Kill David Arquette
Actor David Arquette attempts a rocky return to the sport that stalled his promising Hollywood career, professional Wrestling.
Tesla (also on VOD Aug. 21)
A freewheeling take on visionary inventor Nikola Tesla, his interactions with Thomas Edison and J.P. Morgan’s daughter Anne, and his breakthroughs in transmitting electrical power and light.
Dress Rehearsal (Alamo at Home, Aug. 20)
Austin documentary filmmaker David Modigliani (CRAWFORD, RUNNING WITH BETO) captured history this spring by heading to Wisconsin to document the first major election to happen amidst the pandemic shutdown.
The August Virgin (Aug. 21)
The August Virgin is a film diary of one young woman’s dreamy, sensual summer story of coming-of-age, in the vivid Madrid streets, filled with music, art, dancing and good conversation. Featuring music by, and an appearance by well-known Spanish singer Soleá Morente.
Video on Demand
Skin: A History of Nudity in the Movies (Aug. 18)
A definitive documentary on the history of nudity in the movies, beginning with the silent movie era through present day, examining the changes in morality that led to the use of nudity in films while emphasizing the political, sociological and artistic changes that shaped this rich history.
The Barge People (Aug. 18)
A group of friends sets off for a relaxing weekend away on the canals of the glorious British countryside, unaware of the flesh-eating mutants lurking in the water…ready and waiting to feed.
A Life of Endless Summer: The Bruce Brown Story (Aug. 18)
The Bruce Brown Story is an exclusive retrospective documentary on Bruce Brown’s life told by the one who knew him best, his son, Dana Brown. It’s a story of a man, a father, a husband, a filmmaker, a pioneer, a legend – A Life Well Lived.
Tracks (Aug. 18)
A young couple tries to save their failing relationship by interrailing around Europe together. Things don’t quite go to plan and they find themselves in all sorts of awkward situations.
The Vanished (Aug. 21)
A family vacation takes a terrifying turn when parents Paul and Wendy discover their young daughter has vanished without a trace. Stopping at nothing to find her, the search for the truth leads to a shocking revelation in this psychological thriller.
Chemical Hearts (Amazon Prime, Aug. 21)
Seventeen-year-old Henry Page (Austin Abrams) has never been in love. He fancies himself a romantic, but the kind of once-in-a-lifetime love he’s been hoping for just hasn’t happened yet. Then, on the first day of senior year, he meets transfer student Grace Town (Lili Reinhart) and it seems all that is about to change.