Indie Close-Up: 'Psychopaths' and 'Thieves' Lead a Busy Weekend for Indie Flicks

It's a busy weekend at the box office. Not only does the awards shoe-in Argo hit theaters (it's going to get multiple Oscar nominations) but we finally get a genuinely scary movie just in time for Halloween with Sinister. If you're in the mood for some comedy, Here Comes the Boom features some good physical comedy from star Kevin James.

There's plenty to choose from in the indie movie world and two films (Atlas Shrugged and Seven Psychopaths) get semi-major releases. Let's see what's hitting theaters this weekend…

Atlas Shrugged: Part II

The first film was a dud but the producers behind the second part of the this adaptation of Ayn Rand's novel pressed on. A new cast and a new director were brought on to bring us the conclusion of this two-part franchise. Whether audiences will turn out for this movie remains to be seen, but critics certainly haven't been kind.

 

Seven Psychopaths

If there's one indie movie worth watching, it's this one. Like Atlas, Psychopaths is getting a semi-major release, hitting about 1,500 screens nationwide. Starring Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell and Christopher Walken, this smart, well-acted and hilarious sophomore effort from In Bruges' Martin McDonagh is definitely worth seeking out. Check out our Sleepers to See column for seven reason to check out Seven Psychopaths!

 

Smashed

Mary Elizabeth Winstead stars as an alcoholic who goes sober, but kicking the drinking bug isn't as easy as she originally thought. Her new lifestyle reveals a troubled relationship with her mom, lies she's told her employer and calls into question her relationship with her husband played by Aaron Paul. The film won the Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival this year and was also nominated for the Grand Jury Prize as well. Sufficed to say, the two leads deliver a powerful performance.

 

The Thieves

Imagine if the group from Ocean's Eleven ended up turning on one another after their big score. That's essentially the pattern The Thieves takes as a guy named Popeye and his group of thieves go to Macau on a job to steal a fabled diamond. The Korean thriller is a relentlessly entertaining heist caper, with its appealing cast, intricate plot and solid action sequences.

 

War of the Buttons

Laetitia Casta returns to theaters in Christophe Barratier's War of the Buttons. You may have caught her in last month's Arbitrage, but Buttons is a completely different movie. Set in occupied World War II France, the films tells the tale of a pre-teen rebel and the "war" he leads between two rival kid gangs from neighboring villages.

 

3,2,1… Frankie Go Boom

Ever wonder what Ron Perlman looked like dressed in drag? OK, probably not, but Frankie Go Boom is going to give you that disturbing visual along with a story about two brothers who seek the help of said Perlman in erasing all evidence of a sex tape from the internet before the movie star father of the girl involved seeks violent revenge. Charlie Hunnam and Chris O'Dowd play the brothers while Chris Noth plays the movie star father and Lizzy Caplan is the girl involved on the tape.

 

Middle of No Where

Winner of the Best Director award at this year's Sundance Film Festival, this film follows Ruby, a bright medical student who sets aside her dreams and suspends her career when her husband is incarcerated for eight years. Ruby must learn to live another life marked by shame and separation and, in a moment of stunning betrayal and a chance encounter, the steadfast wife propels herself into a new and shocking direction.

 

Gayby

Winner of two awards at the Ashland Independent Film Festival (for Best Acting Ensemble and the Audience Award), Gayby follows Jenn and Matt, best friends from college who are now in their thirties. Jenn spends her days teaching hot yoga while Matt suffers from comic-book writer's block and can't get over his ex-boyfriend. The pair decide to fulfill a youthful promise of having a kid together, the old-fashioned way. The irreverent comedy explore friendship, growing older, sex and loneliness.

 

Also opening this weekend, the slasher flick Smiley, the horror sequel Grave Encounters 2, the drama Hotel Noir starring Carla Gugino and Mandy Moore, Diane Kruger in the action flick Special Forces, a well-received documentary, Photographic Memory and two-time Cesar Award nominee The Big Picture.

Expanding in theaters this weekend is the excellent Perks of Being a Wallflower.

For more Indie Film coverage, check out our Indie Film Guide!

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