Category: Looking at the Weekend

Looking at the Weekend: Jul. 20-22, 2018

It’s hard to know which has more fans: Denzel Washington and his extreme justice character in The Equalizer 2 or fans of Mamma Mia. The two films will go head to head for the box office crown with both posing a threat to win. I give the edge to Mamma Mia simply because it was the bigger success when it debuted. Of course, as the sequel to My Big Fat Greek Wedding proved, second times aren’t always the best.

Our Highest Rated Films: Blindspotting
Our Best Awards Ratings: Blindspotting (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Far from the Tree
Generation Wealth
McQueen
Running for Grace
Teefa in Trouble

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Looking at the Weekend: Jul. 13-15, 2018

Two movies battle it out for superiority this weekend. One features a vampire looking for love while the other features a Rock looking for his loved ones. While the Hotel Transylvania films have been popular, popular enough to merit a third outing, I suspect that Dwayne Johnson’s box office muscles paired with a Die Hard-meets-Towering Inferno premise should help propel it to the top of the box office.

Our Highest Rated Films: Eighth Grade
Our Best Awards Ratings: No consensus

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Dark Money
Soorma

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Looking at the Weekend: Jul. 6-8, 2018

After a week off of major debuts, Ant-Man and the Wasp gives Disney/Marvel another opportunity to assault the box office. This time, it’s a follow-up to the 2015 film that introduced us to the madcap adventures of a cat burglar who stumbles upon a size altering suit. While the original was not nearly as successful as some of the more recent Marvel outings, it was solid enough to deserve a sequel. This time, Evangeline Lilly is given more screentime as the Ant-Man associate Wasp, one of the original members of the Avengers. As one of only two movies to fill in the gaps between the two parts of the Avengers films, it may get a boost at the box office, enabling it to soar higher than its predecessor. Also, if early indications are true and the film really is a success with critics, it could be a much bigger success than suspected. The First Purge has no hopes of topping that film, but it could rival the third weekend of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom for second place considering the $30 million-range debuts of all three prior films in the series.

Our Highest Rated Films: Ant-Man; Sorry to Bother You
Our Best Awards Ratings: Ant-Man (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Sharp Edges
Whitney

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Looking at the Weekend: Jun. 29-Jul. 1, 2018

It will be a rather meager weekend following the $100 million-plus debuts of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom last weekend and Incredibles 2 the weekend before that. With two big blockbusters in their second and third weeks respectively, it will be a quiet weekend with Sicario: Day of the Soldado running away with the weekend crown for new releases, but struggling to top Jurassic and being in a race for second with Incredibles 2. The sequel to Emily Blunt starrer Sicario, the producers hope to take that popular film and turn its follow up into a successful one. However, it remains to be seen if dumping Blunt in favor of going with an all-male cast none of whom seem to be questioning the positions they are taking like Blunt’s character did will result in an equally impressive run or if it will be yet another example of an unnecessary sequel being driven to the marketplace when one was never warranted.

Our Highest Rated Films: Leave No Trace
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

GameChangers
Love, Cecil
Sanju
This Is Congo
Three Identical Strangers

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Looking at the Weekend: Jun. 22-24, 2018

Opening to the tune of $208 million three years ago, Jurassic World proved there is plenty of life left in the Jurassic Park franchise. While the $231 million it would have made in 2018 dollars is a staggering figure, it’s not an insurmountable one. While the film is unlikely to top its predecessor, which couldn’t even top the original in inflation-adjusted currency, the second film will do well and will definitely top the second film in the series, which made $457 million adjusted for inflation. That said, I suspect the opening weekend, with the competition of Incredibles 2 is probably going to top out around $200 million even if it opens in more theaters than the prior film.

Our Highest Rated Films: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
Our Best Awards Ratings: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

The King
Spiral

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Looking at the Weekend: Jun. 15-17, 2018

The first film opened to $70 million at the box office. In 2004. That’s 14 years of inflation to account for. Had it opened today, that gross would have been just over $100 million. A sequel has been clamored for year after year since the film debuted. That should enable it to top $100 million easily. Finding Dory holds the current Pixar record for highest opening weekend with $135 million. Toy Story 3 is second with $110 million. The latter seems likely, but the former might be a stretch. However, it’s possible that since Finding Nemo opened slightly lower than The Incredibles a year apart, Incredibles 2 could also open just slightly higher than the Nemo sequel.

Our Highest Rated Films: Incredibles 2
Our Best Awards Ratings: Incredibles 2 (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Eating Animals
Five Seasons: The Gardens of Piet Oudolf

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Looking at the Weekend: Jun. 8-10, 2018

Three films release wide and with nothing holding over from the prior weekend of any genuine strength, we have a three-way race for number one. Hereditary probably has the weakest chances. Horror hasn’t done that well lately and while the buzz is solid, I doubt it can overcome the other two films releasing. Hotel Artemis came out of nowhere and has presented a rather exciting trailer, which gives it plenty of chance to outdo expectations. I suspect it might end up fading fast, but it could have an explosive debut. Yet, I doubt it will top the all-female Ocean’s 8, which stars three of the most popular actresses working in film today plus a bountiful batch of other women who have solid fan bases. I have little doubt that Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, and Anne Hathaway will take the top spot and I am not so sure that it will even be close.

Our Highest Rated Films: Hotel Artemis, Ocean’s 8
Our Best Awards Ratings: Herditary (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

En el Septimo Dia (On the Seventh Day)
Middleground
The Quest of Alain Ducasse
Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist
Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

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Looking at the Weekend: Jun. 1-3, 2018

There are three new films opening this weekend and none of them have the greatest of prospects, meaning Solo will be winning a second weekend. Of the three, two seem like they would each have solid chances of being the top new release. Action Point has connections to Jackass and Upgrade has connections to Saw and Insidious. Ultimately, I suspect that the slightly wider release of Action Point will be the determining factor, but a surprising shift in interest towards Upgrade could push it over the top.

Our Highest Rated Films: American Animals, Adrift
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Breath
Rodin

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Looking at the Weekend: May 25-27, 2018

Deadpool 2 will only have a single week at the top of the box office as its easily displayed by the second non-trilogy Star Wars film. Solo: A Star Wars Story explores the past of one of the series most prominent characters, Han Solo. With Harrison Ford out of the picture in terms of the main trilogy, his age prevents him from being employed in his “origin” story. Alden Ehrenreich, who seemed like a rising talent when he starred in Beautiful Creatures and later was part of one of the most celebrated scenes of its year in the Coen Brothers’ Hail, Caesar!, early word is he’s quite good, which will help bolster the film’s chances at the box office.

Our Highest Rated Films: Solo: A Star Wars Story
Our Best Awards Ratings: Solo: A Star Wars Story (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

The Gospel According to André
The Misandrists

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Looking at the Weekend: May 18-20, 2018

The reign of The Avengers will be ended by a different Marvel property, this one from rival Fox. Deadpool opened to $132 million just two years ago on its way to $363 million total. The sequel has already gotten solid early response, which means a $100-plus opening is certain, which will be more than enough for a first place finish. How far up will it debut? It’s impossible to know, but $150 million or more wouldn’t be shocking.

Our Highest Rated Films: Deadpool
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Pope Francis – A Man of His Word
That Summer

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Looking at the Weekend: May 11-13, 2018

Melissa McCarthy shows up at the box office in the wake of the third weekend of Avengers: Infinity War. While Warner Bros. might have thought it was valid counter-programming, the latest McCarthy effort doesn’t look like it will hold its own very well against Avengers and will further decrease her ability to be sold as a box office draw. Avengers will easily top the box office and Life of the Party will at least top this past weekend’s top new comedy release Overboard, though by how much isn’t certain.

Our Highest Rated Films: The Seagull
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Anything
Champion
Class Rank
The Day After
Mountain

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Looking at the Weekend: May 4-6, 2018

There aren’t a lot of non-Avengers options this weekend. Of what’s releasing, only one of them is likely to perform well at the box office. Overboard features Eugenio Derbez, who has been a decent draw at the box office, which could help make the film the top new release.

Our Highest Rated Films: Tully; The Guardians
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

102 Not Out
Altered Perception
Ray Meets Helen
RBG

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Looking at the Weekend: Apr. 27-29, 2018

After a Quiet weekend at the box office, with the horror thriller coming out on top for the second time in its three weeks in release, a new champion will be crowned and that’s Avengers: Infinity War. Nine films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) have topped $100 million at the box office on their opening weekends. The original Avengers remains to the top weekend with Black Panther shy of that title by about $5 million. Those are the only two films to top $200 million at the box office. With Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War being the next two top finishers, both of which are essentially Avengers films and not stand-alones. That means this third formally-titled Avengers film, fourth nearly-full team-up film, is sure to be one of the year’s top openers.

Can it top Black Panther and if it does, will it then top The Avengers from 2012? The answer is: probably. There are five total films that have ever topped $200 million on opening weekend. Apart from the two MCU titles, which sit at fourth and fifth on the list, there’s Jurassic World, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The Force Awakens is the current record-holder. Jurassic World barely topped Avengers with $208. The Last Jedi is just above with $220. That puts Force Awakens on top with $247. My guess is that Inifity War will finish out at third on the list behind the two Star Wars films.

Our Highest Rated Films: Disobedience; Avengers: Infinity War
Our Best Awards Ratings: Avengers: Infinity War (Oscars); Disobedience (Oscars)

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Let the Sunshine In
The Test and the Art of Thinking

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Looking at the Weekend: Feb. 20-22, 2018

The second weekends of both Rampage and A Quiet Place will likely give I Feel Pretty a run for its money to take the box office crown. Ultimately, I suspect I Feel Pretty hasn’t had nearly the interest in it that these other films have, so I give the victory to A Quiet Place in its third week.

Our Highest Rated Films: I Feel Pretty
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

The Devil and Father Amorth
Furious (Legend of Kolovrat)
Genesis
Ghost Stories
Godard Mon Amour

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Looking at the Weekend: Apr. 13-15, 2018

Horror films typically drop faster at the box office than most films, which should give Dwayne Johnson’s monster movie Rampage a free shot at the box office. Of course, A Quiet Place may not play like other horror films and could slip much less steeply with solid word of mouth. That might make the competition a bit more fierce, making it tougher for Rampage to hit the top, thought it probably still will. The rest of the weekend’s new releases aren’t likely to outperform meager expectations.

Our Highest Rated Films: Borg vs. McEnrose; Zama
Our Best Awards Ratings: None

OTHER LIMITED RELEASES

Beirut
Isle of Dogs (Expanding) (Read our previous Looking at the Weekend commentary here.)

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