Who knew one of Bryan Mills’ set of skills was complete domination of the Box Office?
1. Taken 2 – $49.5 (first week)
Liam Neeson’s second go-around as the retired Special Forces agent who can’t keep his family out of harm’s way (but once they get there, boy…) was box office king this weekend. The film doubled the opening of the first film and took in just short of $50 million in just three days. HOWEVER, the film got panned by critics (it sits at 19% on Rotten Tomatoes) unlike the original (a still-not-great 58%) but audiences are also rampaging against this one, which didn’t happen the last time. Despite the $24 million opening of the first film, it hung around in the top 5 for 8 weeks, which is a modern miracle, really. It finished with $145 million and if I was a betting man (and I just so happen to be) I’d say that this film will not pass up the first in the long run, despite it’s huge opening, because of the bad word-of-mouth and the plethora of movie options coming in the next couple weeks.
But, it did inspire this pretty funny meme, so I’m glad it got made:
2. Hotel Transylvania – $27.1 ($76.7 total)
I doubt that many people had this as being the animated stand-out of the Fall. Despite not having a big name like Tim Burton directing it (like our #5 film this weekend – but more on that later) it has done well in its first two weeks. It’s well on pace to pass $100 million which is always a nice milestone, especially for a movie that has an $85 million price tag on it.
3. Pitch Perfect – $14.8 ($21.7 total)
The “Glee”-riffic singing movie (note: there’s nothing “Glee” about it from what I hear – I just lump anything about singing together with the TV teen drama) expanded nationwide and produced very well for this type of movie. It has decent buzz going so this might hang around a bit because of its counter-programming effect.
4. Looper – $12.1 ($40.2 total)
The fantastic time travel action pic from Rian Johnson dropped to #4 this weekend, but maintained a decent enough amount of business. It had a low budget ($30 million) and maybe could produce some repeat business with the recent news that Johnson has released a director’s commentary online that you can download and listen to in the theater. I think this is fantastic marketing and I am intrigued to give it a shot. If I’m not the only one (and I doubt I would be) then Looper could hang around the top 10 for another month. Plus, did I mention its awesome?!? Go see this movie!
5. Frankenweenie – $11.4 (first week)
Tim Burton’s spiraling down continues…
The stop-motion animation (and black and white) movie by the much maligned director bombed in its first weekend. It will certainly struggle to meet its $39 million budget as it did less in its opening weekend than Hotel Transylvania likely will do next weekend in its third weekend. It’s not that I wish ill-will upon Burton, I’m just so tired of his shtick. Do you remember when he made Big Fish, the fun and quirky film starring Ewan McGregor and Albert Finney (among many others)? It was something different for Burton, but it still allowed him to put his touch on it. That was a great movie and one that he should maybe try to recapture the magic of in the near future.
6. End of Watch – $4.0 ($32.9 total)
Still in the lead in the race between the next two films on this list. The three movies were all released on the same day and the cop drama has not only earned the most money, but has far and away the best reviews. Hats off to David Ayer on this one. I mean, you already know how I feel about it...
7. Trouble with the Curve – $3.8 ($29.7 total)
Get off my field! (Oh, I’ve already made this joke before…)
8. House at the End of the Street – $3.7 ($27.6 total)
Booooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Yes, I plan on doing this every week that it remains in the Top 10)
9. The Master – $1.9 ($12.3 total)
Perfect example of why it’s struggling: This was slated to be my buddy’s birthday movie this past Wednesday. At happy hour before the movie, he asked me how high I was on seeing it, and I told him that I’d be happy to go if he was truly into it and he decided he really wasn’t because he wasn’t so in the mood for something so serious and, for lack of a better word, confusing. So we decided on going with Instant Netflixing Raid: The Redemption instead. I’m happy with our decision…
10. Finding Nemo 3D – $1.6 ($39.0 re-release – $378.7 total)
Not much more to say…should take its lifetime cume to $380 million before it leaves theaters. Not too shabby for the Pixar classic.
Next weekend shows the wide release of three movies and a medium release of another two. The wide releases are Ben Affleck’s Argo (which not only looks fantastic, but is getting Best Picture-type reviews), Here Comes the Boom (the Kevin James UFC Comedy – I have admitted to a mild interest here, but it’s a rental interest, not a theater interest), and the creepy-as-hell looking Sinister, starring Ethan Hawke. Something called Atlas Shrugged: Part Two also will be in limited release (I’ve never even heard of this) but the one that fills me with the most intrigue is Seven Psychopaths, the Martin McDonough written-directed film. In his follow-up to the brilliantIn Bruges, he directs Woody Harrelson, Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken, and Tom Waits in what looks to be a fantastically entertaining time at the movies.
That’s a whole lot of cinematic options… which are you most likely to check out?