Weekend Movie Guide: Kung Fu Panda 3, Fifty Shades of Black

2998 days ago.
Kung Fu Panda 3

Kung Fu Panda 3, The Finest Hours, Fifty Shades of Black and Jane Got A Gun open in movie theaters around St. Louis this weekend. Joy begins showing  at Keller 8, while Goosebumps and Burnt are among the movies now available to rent at Redbox.

Kung Fu Panda 3 premieres at MX Movies in downtown St. Louis this weekend. The film is showing in standard 2D as well as 3D. The Boy and Ride Along 2 are also playing.

Don’t pay regular price for a ticket to see one of these new releases in the theater. Sign up now for MoviePass at MoviePass.com.

Fifty Shades of Black, Kung Fu Panda, Jane Got A Gun and The Finest Hours open in movie theaters this weekend.

Recapping Last Weekend

The Revenant took the weekend box office with ticket sales of just more than $16 million last weekend. Star Wars: The Force Awakens, in its sixth weekend of release, took the second spot with $14 million while Ride Along 2 brought in just shy of $12.5 million.

The three movies that made their debut last weekend finished 4,5 and 6 for the weekend. Dirty Grandpa made $11.1 million. The Boy pulled in $10.8 million and The 5th Wave brought in $10.3 million.

What I Saw This Week

I saw Joy, Dirty Grandpa and The 5th Wave this past week. I found Joy to be quite enjoyable. Jennifer Lawrence deserves the award talk she is getting. Dirty Grandpa was surprisingly raunchy. I’m not one to get offended easily or anything, but the level this movie takes things might be a tad too far. I don’t think it’s the worst movie ever, as Salon and other critics are making it out to be, but it’s definitely far from great.

I was pretty disappointed in The 5th Wave. From the trailer, I was excited to see this film and thought it would be good. Now, I haven’t read Rick Yancey’s books, but hopefully they are more exciting than this movie.

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Opening This Weekend

Kung Fu Panda 3

The latest installment in the Kung Fu Panda franchise, Kung Fu Panda 3, is being looked at as the movie that will pull the box office out of its recent slump. USA Today says the franchise needs some new moves, but when the first two films made around $1.3 billion worldwide combined, it’s hard to argue with sticking with the formula for the third.

Kung Fu Panda 3 is taking an approach to the Chinese market that hasn’t really been done before by a U.S.-produced film. Seven theaters across the U.S. will be showing the film either dubbed or subtitled in Mandarin. It is also being co-produced by several Chinese companies, which allows it to be shown during the Chinese New Year holiday season. U.S. films are typically not allowed to be shown during the season in China.

Todd M. Thatcher predicts a $41.7 million opening domestic weekend for Kung Fu Panda 3.

Kung Fu Panda 3 trailer

The Finest Hours

Disney’s The Finest Hours stars Chris Pine and Casey Affleck and is based on real events that happened in February of 1952 and were chronicled in a book by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman. Holliday Grainger, who played Anastasia in Cinderella, plays Pine’s fiancée.

Stephen Holden of The New York Times compares The Finest Hours to a typical WWII movie and says that is the film’s charm. Tasha Robinson of The Verge praises the film, but cautions that if you strain to hear some of the dialogue, it’s not the theater’s fault.

Todd M. Thatcher is predicting a $10.2 million opening weekend for The Finest Hours.

The Finest Hours trailer

Fifty Shades of Black

Fifty Shades Of Grey gets the Wayans parody treatment with Fifty Shades of Black. Marlon Wayans takes the lead role of Christian Black in the film he also wrote. The Anastasia Steele role played by Dakota Johnson in Grey is replaced by Kali Hawk as Hannah. Jane Seymour, Mike Epps, Fred Willard and Florence Henderson are among the familiar faces that show up in the film.

Marlon Wayans posted a picture of his newly-formed abs on his Instagram page. The caption basically says the movie is very funny and he worked hard to get those abs so, please see it. It uses a bit of colorful language but basically says that.

Wayans wasn’t the only only looking “fly” for the movie, however. Seymour turned heads at the movie’s premiere.

Josh Rottenberg writes in the Los Angeles Times that Fifty Shades of Black is a fine addition in the genre line that includes The Kentucky Fried Movie, Blazing Saddles and Wayans’ own Scary Movie and Dance Flick.

Todd M. Thatcher predicts  a $16 million opening weekend for Fifty Shades of Black.

Fifty Shades of Black trailer

Jane Got A Gun

Natalie Portman filmed Jane Got A Gun three years ago, but it is just now coming to theaters. In the western, Portman stars as a mother forced to protect her home and her wounded husband from his back-stabbing former partner (Ewan McGregor) with the help of her ex-lover (Joel Edgerton).

Jane was originally set to be directed by Lynne Ramsay and star Michael Fassbender and Edgerton alongside Portman. Ramsay was no where to be found on the first day of filming and quit the film. She and producers settled a suit, which was rumored to be caused by delays in script and budget approval. Jude Law (who had replaced Fassbender) followed Ramsay in leaving the film since he had originally signed on to work with her.

Bradley Cooper was briefly set to replace Law, but he backed out to make American Hustle instead. McGregor was eventually cast in the role.

The departure of Ramsay and Law caused some expected financing to fall through. The hole was filled by a production company run lawyer David Boies and Zack Schiller. Boies was first contacted about the shortfall on the day he argued before the United States Supreme Court against California’s Proposition 8, which would have amended the state constitution to say that only marriages between a man and a woman were legal.

Todd M. Thatcher is predicting a $1.7 million opening weekend for Jane Got A Gun. The prediction was marked down from an earlier prediction due to news that the film is only opening on 550 screens.

Jane Got A Gun trailer

Catch It Before It’s Gone

Joy makes its way to Keller 8 Cinema in South County this weekend. The film stars Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper and Robert De Niro. It’s based on the life of Joy Mangano, who at 34 developed what would become the Miracle Mope. Lawrence is nominated for an Oscar for her role as Joy, having already won a Golden Globe.

Joy has made just north of $90 million worldwide in under five weeks of release.

Joy trailer

Make It A Redbox Night

Among the new releases available at your local Redbox this week are Goosebumps with Jack Black, Burnt with Bradley Cooper and Hitman Agent 47.

If you were a fan of the Goosebumps books growing up, check out the film starring Jack Black. You’ll enjoy it.

Goosebumps trailer

Entertainment News

Nickelodeon Making Avengers-Style Movie

Nickelodeon and Paramount are moving forward with plans to make an Avengers-style film based on the Nicktoons characters famous in the ’90s. Jared Hess, who was also behind the camera for Napoleon Dynamite, has signed on to direct.

The Secret Life of Pets Trailer #2

The second trailer for The Secret Life of Pets has been released.  The film, featuring the voices of Srteve Coogan, St. Louisan Ellie Kemper, Albert Brooks, Dana Carvey and Bobby Moynihan, is set to hit theaters on July 8, 2016.

The Secret Life of Pets trailer #2


Jerry Bruckheimer Teases Tom Cruise Involvement In Top Gun 2

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer lit up the internet with this Instagram post yesterday. The post features a picture of Bruckheimer with actor and crazy person Tom Cruise. The caption says that the pair were discussing Top Gun 2 in New Orleans. Rumors are abundant that the pair will reunite for a Top Gun sequel with Curise reprising his iconic role as Maverick.

Just got back from a weekend in New Orleans to see my old friend Tom Cruise and discuss a little Top Gun 2.

A photo posted by Jerry Bruckheimer (@jerrybruckheimer) on

The Bronze Trailer

Melissa Rauch stars in the raunchy gymnastics The Bronze, in theaters March 18.

The Bronze trailer


Joseph Fiennes Set To Play Michael Jackson In Bizzare-Sounding Movie

Have you heard about the controversy around a white actor playing Michael Jackson in an upcoming film? That’s not the half of it. Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare In Love) has been cast as the “King of Pop” in a strange new film supposedly based on a true story. As the story goes, Michael Jackson was in New York rehearsing for an upcoming concert when the tragic events of 9/11 happened. Jackson hired a car to take him, Marlon Brando and Elizabeth Taylor back to California.

The story is very possibly just an urban legend, but the movie is set to be a light road trip comedy with Stockard Channing set to play Liz Taylor and Brian Cox slated to play Marlon Brando.

I understand that the late Michael Jackson was black, but he looked pretty darn white in 2001 while in New York to film an interview with Carson Daly.

2001 Michael Jackson interview with MTV’s Carson Daly


Trolls Trailer

The Trolls are getting their own feature film from Dreamworks. Stars such as Justin Timberlake, Anna Kendrick, Russell Brand, James Corden and Gwen Stefani will lend their voices to the animated characters while Timberlake will also provide original music. Trolls hit theaters this November.

Trolls trailer


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Ryan is a weird dude. He doesn't cook, yet owns a plethora of kitchen gadgets. He rationalized buying a SodaStream while unemployed. He counts Step Up 2: The Streets as one of his favorite movies along with Footloose, Rent, Grease and Paul Blart: Mall Cop. He loves Mizzou but only wants them in the SEC so he can tailgate in Nashville. He owns a ShakeWeight and AbLounger, but still loves him some John Donut and Billie's Fine Foods. You can get more of Ryan at iLoveSoulard.com or just check the stool on the far end of the bar at iTap in Soulard.

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