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January 23, 2001

CTHD Wide Release

Of course, the very Friday following my exceptional Wednesday night sojourn downtown to see Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Regal Cinemas does the uncharacteristic thing and picks up a subtitled foreign film for wide release. Ain't that a kick in the head?

Their track record is exactly the opposite, ignoring foreign or indie films, or consigning them to one or two theatres in downtown Portland. They seem to assume that folks in the suburbs don't want access to quality films. So I think I was justified in my approach of catching it while it was at Cinema 21, but it would have been nice to have some notice.

I went with my "NOVA" friends on Saturday night to see the film Snatch, which is a British comic crime film about assorted losers trying to get a 28 carat diamond--for the money or to save their lives. Guy Ritchie directs this movie, his second effort two years after Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, which I also saw on a "NOVA" night.

Both movies do a damn fine job at telling one of my favorite kinds of story, the Comic Crime story. Another example of this is The Hot Rock which was based on a Donald E. Westlake novel. Another is The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight. And just about any movie made from an Elmore Leonard novel.

But I digress "qbullet.smiley". While we were getting our tickets we observed a huge line inside the theatre lobby. Folks in front of us were getting tickets for CTHD, and the ticket seller was informing them that only front row seats were left. Apparently, CTHD had been selling out all showings in all theatres since it opened in the Regal chain. Checking box office numbers, I find that the total earnings since it opened on October 9th is $37m, but that it's weekend earnings since wide release are $6m. That makes it the number eight earner for the weekend, against such filsms as Castaway and Finding Forrester. So folks have just been waiting for it to come somewhere other than the art theatre at the far north of town!

Maybe I'll be able to see foreign films at a suburban theatre after this. Yeah, right.

Posted by dpwakefield at January 23, 2001 01:05 PM