No Pictures Today

U.S. Box Office News: KILL BILL VOL. 2 coasted to an easy victory in the box office race, with a fine $8,604 per-screen average (totaling $25 million), beating out the “other” action/revenge flick THE PUNISHER.

Coming in at #26, SHAOLIN SOCCER maintained a decent $3,283 per-screen average (still at just six theatres) and has totaled $127,300 since its release.

One film that slipped under my personal radar was Jimmy Lee’s CLOSE CALL. It ‘s about a 16-year-old girl’s confrontation with the dark side of life, and sounds worth seeking out. I’m not sure if it’s playing outside of Los Angeles right now.

Major releases coming this Friday include action flick MAN ON FIRE, starring Denzel Washington and directed by Tony Scott, and 13 GOING ON 30, a creepy-sounding comedy starring Jennifer Garner. The latter film bears a thematic resemblance to the Hong Kong film THE FRUIT IS SWELLING, but somehow I doubt the Hollywood production will feature any naked bodies on display.

Los Angeles residents can check out TOKYO GODFATHERS, playing tonight and tomorrow at the New Beverly Cinema (on a double bill with the excellent TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE).

DVD Release News: Yasujiro Ozo’s black and white A STORY OF FLOATING WEEDS (1934) and his color version FLOATING WEEDS (1959) appear tomorrow on DVD from Criterion. Here’s a review from DVD Journal.

Also due out is TUBE, a Korean suspense thriller set on a train. I don’t believe the fim did much when it was released in Korea last last year, but I still want to check it out on DVD. List price from Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment is $24.96, but a rental sounds like a good bet.

Spotlight Link: I’ve been working forever (it seems) on revising my Links page, but in the meantime I wanted to highlight ArtsMagicDVD, a British label that is expanding to the U.S. with some titles that promise to be very exciting. Small DVD labels tend to be run by twisted people with extreme devotion to the films — much like this site. Check it out.

Screenings: Loved KILL BILL VOL. 2. Didn’t want it to end. Not interested in discussion. Will brook no disagreement.

Came home and watched DJANGO!, a perfect (authentic) counterpoint to Quentin Tarantion’s version of a Spaghetti Western. Franco Nero is my man. Loved him dragging around that coffin.

The next day I screened an American comedy/drama that intermittently irritated me. After a break I allowed Jess Franco’s EUGENIE to corrupt me. The 1969 production is a truly weird adaptation of a tale by the Marquis de Sade, but also oddly fascinating — and not just for the lovely naked bodies on occasional display. Lucio Fulci’s demented and brilliant ZOMBIE capped the night.

And then I tried to sleep.

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