Deals. Michel Gondry's doc The Thorn in the Heart may not have generated much positive buzz when it premiered at Cannes last week, but it impressed the folks at Oscilloscope Laboratories. They acquired North American rights to the film and are planning a theatrical release, according to indieWIRE. Thorn examines the life of Gondry's aunt, a schoolteacher for more than 30 years in rural France. David Hudson at IFC's The Daily gathered links to the coverage, in which one critic calls Thorn a "glorified home movie" and another predicts that "normal people will simply walk out of it," while others defend it as "a lovely, minor-key ode" and "mildly diverting."
Box Office. Stephen Elliott's Easy Virtue led the way, earning a very tidy $110,443, according to Box Office Mojo, which averages out to $11,044 per screen. Jessica Biel gives her best performance so far as an American race car driver who marries a young British man (Ben Barnes) after a whirlwind romance, and then must deal with his stuffy mother (Kristin Scott Thomas), curiously distanced father (Colin Firth), and flighty sisters. It's a romantic comedy with dramatic depth, light on its feet yet unafraid to stand still and contemplate fate and mortality.
Expanding into 52 theaters in its second week of release, Rian Johnson's con man comedy The Brothers Bloom rode a wave of appreciative reviews to a per-screen average of $7,394, just a little ahead of Olivier Assayas' critically-acclaimed family drama Summer Hours, starring Juliette Binoche. (We've embedded the lively trailer for the latter title below.) The highly-praised doc Burma VJ opened on one theater with a modest take of $5,554 -- not bad on a crowded weekend.
After the jump: The festival beat goes on in Seattle and at Silverdocs.