Paramount’s nationwide release of the new Mission: Impossible movie has apparently scared other major studios away from releasing any major titles this week, so the low-budget indie titles are filling the void, including a handful of horror, fantasy and science fiction films. Most of these films are playing in only a handful of theatres before making a quick switch to home video; in fact, a few are already available from On Demand streaming services.
Belle is a horror film riff on the fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast. It is playing on a single screen at the Laemmle Glendale Theatre.
End Times is a post-apocalyptic zombie film from Asylum, noted purveyor of low-budget genre films. It is playing at the Laemmle Town Center in Encino, and it available to stream on Redbox. See the trailer at top.
Final Cut: Kino Lorber releases this zombie comedy in limited engagements, including three in the Los Angeles area: the Laemmle Noho 7 in North Hollywood, the Laemmle Newhall in Santa Clarita, and the Laemmle Claremont in Claremont. A French remake of Japan’s One Cut of the Dead, Final Cut portrays a low-budget film crew attempting to shoot a horror movie in a single take. Of course things go horribly wrong when real zombies appear.
Oscar winner Michel Hazanavicius directed the film from his own screenplay, based on Shin’ichirô Ueda’s 2017 film. The cast includes Romain Duris, Bérénice Bejo, Matilda Lutz, and Grégory Gadebois. US Theatrical Release Date: July 14, 2023.
The Flood, starring Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers) depicts a group of in-transit prisoners and guards fighting off alligators during a storm in Louisiana (sounds like Crawlspace). Like Belle, it is playing on a single screen at the Laemmle Glendale Theatre. It is available to stream on Vudu.
Psycho-Pass: Providence is a Japanese anime film set in a dystopian future with echoes of Blade Runner and Minority Report. Although it is the latest in a franchise that includes an anime series and six feature films, Crunchyroll informs us, “You don’t really need to see all of the Psycho-Pass saga to understand what’s going on with Psycho-Pass: Providence since it’s an independent story that you will certainly enjoy…for its engaging characters and intriguing plotline.” Compared to other films on this list, it is playing in relatively wide release (at least in Los Angeles), with engagements at Universal Cinema AMC CityWalk Hollywood in Universal City, Regal Sherman Oaks Galleria in Sherman Oaks, AMC Burbank 16 in Burbank, AMC Century City 15 in Los Angeles, AMC American at the Brand 18 in Glendale, and Cinemark Howard Huges Los Angeles in Los Angeles.
Shadows is a Chinese thriller about about a forensic psychiatrist named Ching (Stephy Tang), who can see into people’s subconscious. She discovers a mysterious voice in the mind of a man who recently killed his family – a voice that may have been deliberately planted by his psychiatrist. Shadows is playing at the AMC Atlantic Times Square 14 in Monterey Park, the AMC Santa Anita 16 in Arcadia, and the AMC Puente Hills 20 in City of Industry. (Note: The trailer below refers to the overseas release date.)