Recapping Last Weekend
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug again took the top spot at the box office with a $31.5 million second weekend. The sequel has now grossed over $427 million worldwide with 35% of that coming domestically. The original grossed just over $1 billion worldwide last year during its entire theater run. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues came in second with a opening weekend of $26.8 million. It’s opening weekend would have likely been higher, but the sequel opened on a Wednesday and pulled in $13.2 million in its first two days that didn’t count towards the weekend gross. Anchorman 2 has now brought in $48.6 million in 7 days of release. It’s under performing versus the 2004 original when you adjust the figures for inflation. However, Ron Burgundy became a household name largely after the original’s theater run. Frozen took the third spot in its fifth week of release with $19.6 million. It has now brought in almost $200 million on a $150 million budget. American Hustle brought in $19.1 million in its first weekend of wide release and Saving Mr Banks rounded out the top five with $9.3 million in its.
Opening This Weekend
The Wolf of Wall Street
Martin Scorsese brings us the true story of Jordan Belfort from his rise as a stockbroker to his corrupt fall. Leonardo DiCaprio plays the title character whose book this movie is based on. Peter Travers over at Rolling Stone is downright giddy over this film. Slate saw the movie with a bunch of financial pros in New York and assures us that those folks are pretty much still bad people. Wolf pulled in $9.15 million on Christmas Day; second to Hobbit’s $9.3. Check out this behind the scenes footage. Some people admittingly thought the film, which also stars Jonah Hill, was a bit too much. Here’s how the real story checks out versus the film. This one should be fun to see in theaters, but plan to also watch it when it comes out on video. There’s a good chance a four-hour version will be included on any dvd release. Wolf is predicted to be the top earner among the new movies, but may fall behind Hobbit.
Grudge Match is basically a real-life Godzilla vs King Kong. Rocky Balboa fights Jake LaMotta. The San Francisco Gate called the film an “affront to the cinema gods“. Slyvester Stallone and Robert De Niro are two old dudes who had a boxing rivalry 30 years prior. They decide they need to fight a third time. If you go in expecting this to be anything but what it is, you are an idiot. Be sure to stay for the end credits.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Ben Stiller stars in this flick based on a short story by James Thurber that was first published in 1939. Stiller also directs the film. Walter Mitty has a fairly insignificant job at Life magazine. The most adventure his life sees plays out in his dreams until he finds himself in quite a predicament. He must go on an epic adventure to find a Sean Penn’s photographer character in order to save the final issue of his magazine. Reviews are mixed on the film.Reviews were also mixed on Fox’s Philippines relief “ad” for the film. Either way, Walter Mitty isn’t what you would normally expect from Stiller.
Universal Pictures released 47 Ronin yesterday on Christmas Day. Universal Pictures acknowledged today that they are taking an “unspecified write-down” on the film. Need proof the executives at these companies likely have a few screws loose? More than one person thought it was a good idea to spend $175 million making this film. I’m really surprised 47 Ronin pulled in $7 million on Christmas Day. Most predictions have it pulling in around $20 million in its five-day opening weekend. That’s in line with other big-budget flops. The film stars Keanu Reeves and some actors that are big names in Japan. It’s just the latest movie adaptation based on the Forty-seven Ronin story. Simon Abrams gave it one out of four stars on RogerEbert.com
Justin Bieber’s Believe
Say what you will about his music and him as a person, but kid brings in a whole lot of money. The first Bieber documentary, Never Say Never, opened to the tune of $29.5 million in 2011 and grossed over $73 million domestically. While the first film looked more and Bieber’s beginnings as just a kid on YouTube, this one features a whole lot of concert footage and “Bieber Mania”. This film won’t pull in the original’s box office numbers in part because it is only in 1,000-ish theaters. It may out-duel 47 Ronin, however
Catch It Before It’s Gone
Lots of quality choices in the “land of misfit movies” this week. Out Of The Furnace, Homefront and Delivery Man are all pretty much guaranteed to be well worth your $4. Thor: The Dark World has already made over $627 million worldwide at the box office and would be solid choice as a movie you just have to see on the big screen. My pick is Out Of The Furnace with Christian Bale and Casey Affleck, a film that has only made around $10 million during its theater run.
Make It A Redbox Night
Two films that under-performed at the box office make their way to the magical movie machines this week. The Lone Ranger, starring Johnny Depp, and Jobs with Ashton Kutcher should both be worth your $1.20. Jobs brought in $36 million worldwide with under half of the coming domestically. The Lone Ranger brought in $260.5 million at the box office, but is still considered one of the bigger flops of the year considering its budget of $215 million.