Will Kinds of Kindness Be Another Box Office Hit For Emma Stone?


Billed as a triptych fable, “Kinds of Kindness” follows several different narrative threads, including a man trying to take control of his own life, a cop whose wife has returned after going missing at sea, and a woman searching for a specific someone with a special ability. The star-studded cast also includes Willem Dafoe (“Asteroid City”), Margaret Qualley (“Drive-Away Dolls”), Hong Chau (“The Menu”), Mamoudou Athie (“Elemental”), and Hunter Schafer (“Euphoria”).

Even though we’re in the middle of summer, this movie is benefiting from a lack of serious competition. Jeff Nichols’ long-delayed “The Bikeriders” and Russell Crowe’s “The Exorcism” — not to be confused with “The Pope’s Exorcist” – are hitting theaters next weekend as well. There’s no risk of immediately getting steamrolled by a blockbuster, save for “Inside Out 2” in its second weekend, though that one does figure to be a big hit. In the coming weeks, the duo of Lanthimos and Stone will have to contend with “A Quiet Place: Day One,” “Horizon: An American Saga,” “Despicable Me 4,” and “Twisters,” among others.

This is why the platform strategy makes sense. Searchlight isn’t banking on a single weekend, but is playing the long game here. Frankly, given Disney’s commitment to dumping would-be Fox films straight to Hulu, it’s nice that this one is getting a theatrical release at all.

Working in the film’s favor is critical reception. “Kinds of Kindness” currently boasts an 81% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Whether audiences agree with critics on this one remains a big question, but Stone is coming off of a Best Actress win for “Poor Things,” which will undoubtedly help matters. Lanthimos made a couple of surprisingly audience-friendly yet unique films with “The Favourite” and “Poor Things.” If his latest is cut from a similar cloth, “Kinds of Kindness” could be a sneaky summer hit. If it’s closer to “The Lobster” or “Killing of a Sacred Deer,” its commercial prospects are likely to be more limited.

“Kinds of Kindness” hits theaters on June 21, 2024.

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