Indie Film Release Guide: February 22nd [An ONTD Original]

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I will tell you right now: unless you are pumped to see the latest How to Train Your Dragon movie, this weekend is pretty underwhelming for new films. I’m guessing that this is a result of the Academy Awards happening on Sunday, plus the fact that it’s the last weekend in the overall terrible movie month of February. Maybe think of this as a weekend to catch up on some recent films you haven’t gotten around to yet!

The films listed are from studios other than the “Big Six” - Paramount, Warner Brothers, 20th Century Fox, Universal, Columbia and Disney. Note that some of the movies listed are in their first week or two of limited release in the USA, so it may take them a few more weeks (or months) to show up in your local arthouse theater or on VOD. Check out the posts from the past few weeks for more movies that may have just opened near you: February 15th, February 8th, and February 1st.

If you want to share your movie watching habits and ratings with other ONTDers, please share your letterboxd handle in the comments. It’s a great site to keep track of films for the ONTD movie challenge!


The Changeover



Stars: Melanie Lynskey, Lucy Lawless, Erana James, Benji Purchase
Writer: Stuart McKenzie
Director: Miranda Harcourt, Stuart McKenzie
Genre: Thriller
Plot: A teenage girl looking and her younger brother stumble upon a sinister old man who brands the boy with a supernatural stamp. The boy begins to fall ill and to save him she must discover her own magic powers, doing battle with a demon.
What you should know: Based on the novel by Margaret Mahy
Opens in: Select cities and available on demand



My Stretch of Texas Ground



Stars: Jeff Weber, Junes Zahdi, Hailley Lauren, Mike Gassaway
Writer: Ralph Cinque
Director: Erich Kemp
Genre: Action, Drama, Thriller
Plot: A small-town Texas sheriff has to defend his town from a terror threat.
What you should know: The film was shot in and around central Texas.
Opens in: Select cities


Run The Race



Stars: Tim Tebow, Frances Fisher, Kristoffer Polaha, Tanner Stine
Writer: Jake McEntire, Jason Baumgardner, Chris Dowling
Director: Chris Dowling
Genre: Drama, Sport
Plot: Against the backdrop of high school football and track, two brothers in a small Southern town face escalating problems with two different world views, straining - but ultimately strengthening - the bonds of brotherhood.
What you should know: It's a Christian flick.
Opens in: Wide(ish) release


The Iron Orchard



Stars: Ali Cobrin, Austin Nichols, Lane Garrison, Hassie Harrison
Writer: Gerry De Leon, Ty Roberts
Director: Ty Roberts
Genre: Drama, History, Romance
Plot: The story of Jim McNeely, a young man thrust into the vibrant and brutal West Texas oilfields in 1939, who works his way through the ranks to ultimately become a formidable wildcatter.
What you should know: The film was shot in and around several Texas cities.
Opens in: NYC


1st Summoning



Stars: Hayley Lovitt, Jason MacDonald, Teddy Cole, Brook Todd
Writer: Chris Piner
Director: Raymond Wood
Genre: Horror
Plot: Four student filmmakers set out to explore an abandoned building famous for its connection with the occult, but as their journey becomes littered with strange behavior and unexplained phenomena, it becomes clear the horror they are attempting to document may already be lurking among them.
What you should know: Most of the man on the street interviews in the film were conducted with real residents of Harrison, Arkansas, with the director and producer making cameos.
Opens in: Select cities, and available on demand


Alone/Together



Stars: Liza Soberano, Enrique Gil, Sylvia Sanchez, Nonie Buencamino
Writer/Director: Antoinette Jadaone
Genre: Drama, Romance
Plot: College sweethearts Christine and Raf meet again for the first time, eight years after their breakup. Christine, who once was an over-achieving art student, has become a failure while Raf, a guy nobody thought would be a great man, is now an esteemed doctor to the barrios. Their reunion takes them back to their youth and the dreams they shared back in the day.
What you should know: It’s in Filipino and Tagalog, and I can’t find any trailers with English subtitles.
Opens in: Select cities


Chesley Bonestell: A Brush With The Future



Director: Douglass M. Stewart Jr.
Genre: Documentary
Storyline: Chesley Bonestell was an architect and painter who worked on the Golden Gate Bridge and the Chrysler Building. He worked on famous movies like Citizen Kane as a matte artist, and his mesmerizing paintings of planets and star systems helped inspire America's space program. Why is it that no one knows who he is today?
What you should know: This is the director’s first film.
Opens in: Select cities


Kumbalangi Nights



Stars: Shane Nigam, Soubin Shahir, Fahadh Faasil, Sreenath Bhasi
Writer: Syam Pushkaran
Director: Madhu C. Narayanan
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Plot: The film revolves around four brothers who share a love-hate relationship with each other. Franky's elder brothers, Saji, Bobby and Bony lead a messed up life with their downright arrogance, differences, and disagreements with each other. Each one deals with the struggle of his own.
What you should know: It’s in Mayalayam, and the trailer doesn’t have subtitles.
Opens in: Select cities



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What have you been watching lately, ONTD?