Box Office News: Three major releases were rolled out over Easter weekend, and none scored too well. The top-grossing new release actually came out last Wednesday (JOHNSON FAMILY VACATION). Otherwise, THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST ruled the box office again, with HELLBOY finishing second.
SHAOLIN SOCCER performed well, dropping just 23% from its opening.
DVD Release News: The primary title of interest this week is Satoshi Kon’s TOKYO GODFATHERS, the latest work by the director of PERFECT BLUE and MILLENIUM ACTRESS. I’m sorry to have missed this one during its brief theatrical life, but definitely plan to check it out on disk. To know what to expect, read this review at DVD Journal.
The other title of interest is Quentin Tarantino’s KILL BILL VOL. I. The disk is bare bones, and is mainly worth a rental if you want to prepare for VOL. 2, due for release on Friday.
Screenings: On the big screen, I caught up with HELLBOY, a very dark, amusing comic book adaptation. Very polished and satisfying.
The remake WALKING TALL has been ripped by critics and fans alike, yet I liked the emphasis on action and the crisply paced fight scenes. Not much substance, but it rode like a brisk exploitation flick, very much like certain types of Hong Kong movies.
Via festival screener tapes, I saw three lackluster American films plus the Thai BEAUTIFUL BOXER (based on a true story about a transvestite kickboxer). I found the latter to be engaging throughout its first half, but the second hour fell flat for me. Worth a rental or a festival viewing if the subject matter appeals to you.