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« Stage Door: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | Main | Beauty vs Beast: Scream in your PJs »
Monday
Oct222018

Halloween's Big Weekend and More... 

by Nathaniel R

The return of Jamie Lee Curtis to the Halloween franchise meant big business in movie theaters over the weekend, continuing a strong October. Meanwhile A Star is Born held on to second place for a third consecutive week. It's already the highest grossing release of 2018 to never hit #1, since its surpassed the Mamma Mia  sequel's gross. A lot of platform releases kicked off this week to in the rev up to awards season. More after the jump...

Weekend Box Office
(October 19-21)

W I D E
800+ screens
PLATFORM / LIMITED
excluding prev. wide
1. 🔺 Halloween $76.2 *NEW* Review
1. 🔺 Free Solo $1 on 251 screens (cum. $3.6) 
2. A Star is Born $19 (cum. $126.1)
Review, Posterized,  Podcast
2. Gosnell: The Trial of... $640k on 511 screens (cum. $2.4) 
3. Venom  $18
(cum. $171)
3. Colette $619k on 520 screens 
(cum. $3.7) Capsule,  Podcast
4. Goosebumps 2 $9.7
(cum. $28.8)
4.🔺 Beautiful Boy $415k on 48 screens (cum. $698k)
5. First Man $8.3 (cum. $29.7) Capsule Review, Podcast
5. 🔺 Mid90s $258k *NEW*  on 4  screens
6. 🔺 The Hate U Give $7.6 (cum. $10.7) Review
6. 🔺 The Oath $227k on 300 screens (cum. $265k)
7. Smallfoot  $6.5 (cum. $66.3) Warner Animation
7. 🔺 Can You Ever Forgive Me? $161k *NEW* on 5 screens Review
8. Night School
$4.8 (cum. $66.7)
8. Anhadhun $147k on 62 screens
(cum. $959k)
9. Bad Times at the El Royale $3.4 (cum. $13.4) Review
9. The Wife $130k on 130 screens (cum. $7.4)  ReviewBlurbBest Actress
10.  🔺 The Old Man and the Gun $2.1 (cum. $4.2)  Review
10. 🔺 Wildlife $104k  on 4 screens *NEW* Review, Carey Mulligan
🔺 = new or expanding theater count
numbers (in millions unless otherwise noted) from box office mojo 

 

Some thoughts...

• It looks like Free Solo is shaping up to be yet another documentary to pass the 8 figure mark this year and it keeps expanding really well, securing its first million dollar weekend in its fourth weekend of release. What a strong year for interest in docs this has been.
• Robert Redford is still a draw at 82 years of age. Remember when A Walk in the Woods made unexpected bank? Well, The Old Man & The Gun is off to a strong start, too
• I was a bit surprised at the Mid90s take when they had only Jonah Hill in the director's chair to really sell it. Somehow it did better than Can You Ever Forgive Me? and Wild Life in their similar sized opening weekend (though they all had non-embarrassing per screen averages)
• Nevertheless, as we see each year, the practice of releasing all the adult-aimed Oscar hopefuls in the last three months of the year always has casualties. There are way too many acclaimed Oscar hopefuls seeking basically the same audience so Can You and Wildlife didn't open as well as they could have in maybe another weekend and What They Had starring Hilary Swank got lost in the shuffle making only $17,000+ in its opening weekend on 4 screens while Denmark's Oscar hopeful The Guilty was on 29 screens but earned only $60,000. 
• First Man, Damien Chazelle's handsome moon-landing drama is struggling to find its passionate audience earning only $55.4 million to date globally on a $59 million budget. (For comparison's sake La La Land was half as expensive and brought in $446 million globally by the end of its run).  

 WHAT DID YOU SEE THIS WEEKEND?

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Reader Comments (36)

I saw the HD transmission from the Met of Samson and Dalila, which was better than most of the "films" I've seen in the last six months. I also saw The Sisters Brothers, a hugely dislikeable movie, especially disappointing coming from Jacques Audiard, one of my favorite directors (Read My Lips. A Prophet, Rust and Bone, Dheepan), who up to now has never let me down.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterken s.

Yikes First Man is a bust.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterRiley

Saw First Man ... a brilliant production ... both Ryan Gosling were very good.

Saw The Hate You Give.... Loved it and the lead actress should win the Oscar over anyone else... Close and Gaga included.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterrdf

And..... Redford is going to score that Oscar nom for Best Actor...........!

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEd

I saw and liked "First Man" a film that should win every technical Oscar amazing work from Mr Chazelle who is our best young director. Gosling was very good in this intimate epic.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

No movies, but I am enjoying Ozark, Season 2. I tip my hat to Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, Julia Garner, and Janet McTeer. All are exceptional and the series seems like it's effectively evolving the long-form of cinema.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterTom Ford

Caught up with my DVR and watched The Old Dark House by James Whale. It's kind of a forgettable 1930's movie about strangers in a spooky house but there was some excellent cinematography. Plus Gloria Stuart.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterTom G

First Man was impeccably made, but I felt nothing. After seeing it, I am very curious about its Oscar prospects.

Remember when people predicted that A Star Is Born wouldn't outgross La La Land?

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

A first timer in The Plumber by Peter Weir and a bunch of re-watches in It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown, A Classic Albums piece on Primal Scream's Screamadelica (one of the best albums ever made), The Lost Boys and the Kill Bill films.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterthevoid99

Wow @ Halloween

That is amazing for a slasher flick!!

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterME

Re: First Man

I felt plenty...but why should every film have to make you feel something?

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterTr

Most weeks I don't see any films, and this past week I saw multiple films--I was traveling, so I saw a movie on the plane to and from--definitely a treat. And then Sunday I ended up going to the movies.

On the plane, I saw First Reformed and Eighth Grade. I liked both very much. I might not have been in the BEST frame of mind to watch First Reformed, to be honest, but I was definitely impressed. It's a striking and memorable film. Hawke was as good as everybody has been saying. And Eighth Grade was totally winning. Sweet and smart and well-observed and touching.

On Sunday my partner unexpectedly had a lot of work to do and was like, "This would be a good day for you to see a movie if you want." He is not as into movies as much as I am, so I used the opportunity to see something that I suspected he would find totally depressing--Wildlife. It was on the bubble of things I wanted to see (I wasn't planning on rushing out to see it), but I'm so glad I saw it. It was a very thoughtful, well-made film, and Mulligan was SUPERB. She really inhabited this particular role, and it was a fabulous character for her to play. I also really liked the young actor who played Joseph. He has to essentially hold the film together, and he does a good job of it.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJJM

I saw Climax by Gaspar Noe. Mindblowing.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

I wonder if moviegoers are gravitating to documentaries this year because they seek nonfiction in a time where the prevailing collective opinion passes for truth.

Of course, that is just my opinion.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterBrevity

Jonathan Pryce is going supporting. Category fraud as its best but I think he's totally getting nominated.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

ME: Makes me really wonder what Curse of Chucky and Cult of Chucky would have made if they weren't shoved to direct to video. Probably not as much, but probably BANK, you feel me?

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Tom Ford: Because the biggest advantage of TV is hyper serialization, not telling smaller, fleeter stories with defined but flexible characters...Yeah, The Wire is a miracle, but the good shows that don't entirely avoid the episodic are, generally, the ones that hold up the best. Which is why animation, at least, in the past 15-20 years is the best TV on TV.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

First Man: Really liked it. Loved how distant it was. Chazelle knows how to do climaxes/denouements better than basically anyone right now..

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterArkaan

IF you read the review for Halloween over at My New Plaid Pants, then you'll know what I was thinking too. It had it's moments, but it was mostly "eh".

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterforever1267

I saw Free Solo and Tea with the Dames. Free Solo is terrific, a great film about a misfit that manages to make his insane passion relatable. It makes for a good companion piece with First Man. Where First Man fails in revealing the real Neil Armstrong, French Solo succeeds in showing Alex Honnold as a living, breathing person capable of amazing feats. The photography is impressive too. I don’t know how they manage to get some of the close-ups they capture.

Tea with the Dames is immensely entertaining. There is not much here, but spending an hour and a half with these great actresses is a great time.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterRaul

If they make a documentary about the making of First Man they would name it The Most Expensive Flag of The World.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterFeline Justice

I watched HOUSE OF SPECIAL PURPOSE, the Isabelle Huppert episode of The Romanoffs. I don’t how, but she far surpassed my expectations. She’s absolutely brilliant.

I watched SHAMPOO, which was fine, I guess. I don’t know why I was so excited to see it. Does any really believe Lee Grant deserved her Oscar over Lily Tomlin or Ronee Blakley?

Rewatched WAIT UNTIL DARK, which I think is just perfect. It was my go-to answer for my favourite horror film, and maybe it still is? I was on the verge of tears, I was both so scared and exhilarated. Love, love, love that film.

And then watched A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET PART 2: FREDDY’s REVENGE, which was so explicitly gay. Loved it.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterRoger

Those FIRST MAN numbers are not great. Surely not helped internationally by people being absolutely fucked right off by America at the moment. Who wants to hear about how great American achievements are and the reviews have mostly been about its cerebralness and internalisation.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

thevoid99: Screamadelica is great, right? Legendary. But I'm never sure which is my favourite Primal Scream album. Screamadelica, Give Out But Don't give Up, Vanishing Point and Xtrmntr all have genius on them. And Riot City Blues has Country Girl, so I can't count that one out either!

JJM: You watched First Reformed on a plane? You're a brave soul! Glad you enjoyed the film.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.

Saw First Man and found it quite moving. Gosling is exceptional. The moon landing is an instant classic. Beautiful score. One of the year's best films.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

Roger -- as with many oscar races, Grant didn't win for that performance alone. I am a huge Grant fan but Lily Tomlin should've won.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I saw First Man, Colette, and The Hate U Give. Liked them all. October has been way overstuffed for cinema, like a mini December. Oscar season is the best and the worst.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterchasm301

Yes Roger and Nathaniel! There are a lot of "should have wons" who get talked about far more often, but Lily gives one of my favorite performances ever in Nashville, and it was her film debut. Altman deserves credit for realizing that someone who was famous for being a sketch comedian on Laugh-In was capable of so much.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

I saw EIGHTH GRADE. Oustanding!! I really hope bo Burnham is remembered in original screenplay along with Diablo Cody for Tully.

Are on my list to see:

Burning
The Cake Maker
The Wife

Waiting for the caps to finally see The Wife (is online right now).. I return here next week.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJon

Saw two intense films and one intense episode, and a rewatch of a recent foreign-language nominee.

Girl by Lukas Dhont is an amazing debut both for the filmmaker and the star Victor Polster. If there is a category for quiet intensity, it is this film. The premise was already explored in cinema but the originality in pacing, refreshing performances and as an examination of society's morbid fascination with precision and excellence are all convincingly (re)told in this film. At other times I see Girl as a beautifully shot cinéma vérité that gives a fuller measure of the character's internal struggles. Polster is wonderful and it is not hard to believe he can be Lara in real life. His onscreen dad played by Arieh Worthalter, known for his work in this Moroccan film Razzia provides empathetic support as someone who is accepting of his child's decisions but also firm enough to maintain boundaries. The ending was shattering but also life-affirming.

Maybe I shouldn't have seen Chang-dong Lee's Burning so soon after Girl but when you are in a foreign country and there is a local film festival featuring films from acclaimed directors, you have to see as much as you can. This is the third film from the works of Haruki Murakami (my favorite is Tony Takitani) and after this, I want to see screen adaptations of his other works -- especially the local adaptations. If Girl is quiet intensity, Burning shines a different kind of flame in its intensity. I did not read any review about this but I only heard raves about this film after Cannes. Initially the story is a slow-burn, then as the story evolves and keep on evolving, there is a kind of horror that slowly unsettles. And man, did it end in such a searing way: I can't un-see that last scene anymore. What starts as strange relationships among young adults morphed into something that combines poetic beauty with abject misery. To reveal more would take away the beauty of first seeing how this meditative story slowly gets to where it ended, but the performances were top-notch believable, the cinematography assists in telling the story more than a showcase of clever gimmicks, and how small details give more nuance: the cat named Boil, the sunlight that is fleeting, and how a yawn achieves a sinister turn. Truly a beautiful film even if it's not everyone's cup of tea.

Then I saw Tanna which was Australia's entry to the Academy's foreign language category in 2016. Set in an Oceanian territory, this is a Romeo and Juliet story that is culture- and environment-specific. I am not surprised at how the film can still move me even if I know how it will end but I am always thankful I get to see movies again so I can focus on other details when I know the story's resolution. And the two lead performers were amazing because they were probably not acting. I realise that I need to see more films portraying this region of the world.

Finally saw The Romanoffs' third episode. Although it is called "House of Special Purpose", it can just as appropriately be titled as "Sweet Dreams," or "Where's László?". I will just reserve my comment when a thread opens up to discuss this episode but I am with Roger that Isabelle Huppert's performance is one of her best (I know that's saying a lot for this exceptional actress). Her scenes with Christina Hendricks crackle and ignite and sparkle with such potency that I can't take my eyes off them. You know the story will end in Grand Guignol fashion but you don't know how Weiner will stage it, or more appropriately, execute that scene. Also their different acting styles is a delight to see and experience.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterOwl

"[W]hy should every film have to make you feel something[?]" Huh?

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterDan H

Finally got around to seeing Mother!
It was.... interesting ..... to say the least. ;-)
I thought J. Lawrence and M. Pfeiffer were very good but I can see why it didn't fare well at the BO.
Can't say that I need any repeat viewings.....

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterceebee

Suzanne and Nathaniel - Absolutely. It’ll now be one of the losses that stings the most for that category for me!

I put Tomlin in NASHVILLE, Huppert in THE PIANO TEACHER, and Kidman in BIRTH in a special category of powerful actressing accompanied by a live music scene.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterRoger

I don't know why "First Man " has done badly at the box office.

October 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

Redford might stroll past Cooper and Gosling if one doesn't overpower the other.

October 24, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterolga

Yes, October is way too packed. I'm already way behind in movie watching.

But I did see the original Suspiria. I don't know what to make of it, but it sure was entertaining.

October 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterDJDeeJay

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