Jurassic World just beat The Avengers box office tally to become the third highest grosser of all time (when you don't adjust for inflation) which has Awards Daily wringing its hands over what the Academy should do to better honor the types of films people pay to see. As you may have guessed The Film Experience has strong feelings about this topic (including suggested new Oscar categories) all of which we will share with you right now...
Entries in box office (291)
I had a busy movie weekend with Southpaw (better than it should be), Ant-Man (fun but also *shrugs*), a second viewing of Tangerine, and a double-podcast recording session (coming soon). Last night I nearly slipped into a coma of boredom when accidentally catching a half hour of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. (As I type this The Boyfriend is watching The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part One but not even Julianne Moore can get me near that. The appeal of that franchise continues to escape me -- not scary, not moving, dull action sequences -- and since it does I'm not sitting through a padded four-hour finale.)
Pixels high concept was so review and quality-proof that it seemed likely to explode just from brand(s) familiarity alone (like, oh, Jurassic World). But nope. Slightly lower on the list Jake Gyllenhaal had his best opening where he was the main draw since Jarhead in 2005. (I'm not counting Prince of Persia since the video game was the main draw and no one seems to remember that movie just 5 years later, including Jake Gyllenhaal).
What did you see this weekend?
Early Estimates. July 24th-26th Weekend
01 Ant-Man $24.7 (cum. $106)
02 Pixels $24 NEW
03 Minions $22 (cum. $261.5) Tim on the Minions phenom
04 Trainwreck $17.2 (cum. $61.5) Podcast
05 Southpaw $16.5 NEW
06 Paper Towns $12.5 NEW
07 Inside Out $7.3 (cum. $320.3) Podcast
08 Jurassic World $6.8 (cum. $623.7)
09 Mr Holmes $2.8 (cum. $6.4)
10 Terminator Genisys $2.4 (cum. $85.6) Review
It was a good week to be Amy Schumer. Thursday saw her among the Best Actress nominees at the Emmys from a very competitive field and the very next day her first star vehicle movie (which she also wrote) opened to great numbers, even slightly higher than those for the more established female comic headlining a summer movie, Melissa McCarthy in Spy (which has had solid staying power and recently topped $100 million)
It was also a decent week to be Marvel Studios executives, too. Despite low grosses (comparatively for Marvel) a $57 million opening for Ant-Man has to be considered a big success given a) the characters microscopic profile in pop culture, b) a non bankable star -- Paul Rudd is well-loved but he has never been a box office draw c) a troubled production history and d) a release date in the summer in which people are just starting to be critical of Marvel Studios after ten years of drooling all over anything they did.
And of course it continued to be great summer to be Jurassic World which has amassed a simply spectacular fortune despite being merely an OK retread. Every other movie that's grossed over $500 million has had a lot more going for it in terms of newness or critical raves. I'm not trying to be mean -- it's hardly the worst movie in the top ten of all time (that honor belongs to Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace or Shrek 2) -- but the distinct probability that it could threaten Titanic's (1997) domestic gross to become the second most popular movie of all time (if you don't adjust for inflation) is unthinkable and quite depressing. So let's not think about it and become depressed...
Happy thoughts then: What was most wonderful about your weekend?
Early Estimates. July 17th-19th Weekend
01 Ant-Man $57.5 NEW WIDE
02 Minions $47 (cum. $213.4) Tim on the Minions phenom
03 Trainwreck $30 NEW WIDE
04 Inside Out $11 (cum. $305) Inside Out Articles
05 Jurassic World $10.4 (cum. $610.1) Jurassic Articles
06 Terminator Genisys $5 (cum. $80) Review
07 Magic Mike XXL $4.4 (cum. $58.5) Review
08 The Gallows $3.8 (cum. $17.8)
09 Ted 2 $2.3 (cum. $77)
10 Mr Holmes $2.2 NEW LIMITED
As expected those talking yellow dildos (thanks Tim) won the weekend in a big way, though they didn't quite beat the top opening of all time for a toon -- which, I hate to remind you, is held by Shrek The Third. The others held fairly well, particularly Magic Mike XXL which keeps inspiring interesting conversation and dropped only 25% in its second weekend instead of the usual 40 or 50%. The least advertised hit was Baahuball, the Beginning, a spectacle from India on only 236 screens.
July 10th-12th Weekend
01 Minions $115.2 NEW Tim on the Minions phenom
02 Jurassic World $18.1 (cum. $590.6) Jurassic Articles
03 Inside Out $17.1 (cum. $283.6) Inside Out Articles
04 Terminator Genisys $13.7 (cum. $68.7) Review
05 The Gallows $10 NEW
06 Magic Mike XXL NEW $9.6 (cum. $48.3) Review
07 Ted 2 $5.6 (cum. $71.6)
08 Self/Less $5.3 NEW How many Ryan Reynolds movies have you seen?
09 Baahuball: The Beginning $3.5 NEW
10 Max $3.4 (cum. $33.7)
Among notable films in limited release, the documentary Amy (reviewed) had a great second weekend taking in nearly $2 million, the energetic must-see trans comedy Tangerine (raved right here) made $64,000 on 4 screens (with hopefully more to come when word gets out on how raucously fun it is), and the doc Do I Sound Gay? earned $11,000 on 1 screen. Robin Williams bummed out final film Boulevard (reviewed here), didn't fare that well with only $7,000.
What did you see this weekend?
I ended up hiding from the heat and binge-watching UnReal against my will -- but The Boyfriend does whatever Emily Nussbaum at the New Yorker tells him and she had raved about it. I had absolute zero interest in it based on the subject matter (behind the scenes drama at a show not unlike the women-as-chattle reality series The Bachelor) but it's a stunner -- so cynical, provocative, and superbly acted. Constance Zimmer and Shiri Appleby - wow!
A final "halfway mark" note. These are...
THE 10 BIGGEST 2015 MOVIES AT THE US BOX OFFICE (jan thru july 4th weekend)
I share this list only because I love Mad Max Fury Road so much and this is both the first moment (it just crawled over San Andreas) and the last in which it will be a 'top ten movie' for 2015... well, until critics top ten lists emerge but that's a different kind of List Olympics.
Minions, opening today, will surely kick it out of this box office giants chart in the next three days alone. Minions advertising is so oppressive that I imagine every child in the nation wants to see it and every parent has a migraine from hearing about it. (It wouldn't surprise me to hear that they spent as much on P&A as they stand to earn on opening weekend. The first film Despicable Me opened with $53 million and ended with $251 milliion. The second film Despicable Me 2 opened with $83 million and ended with $368 million. So who knows how high this one could go). Maybe it'll end up as the 3rd biggest grosser of 2015 when all is said and done since only Star Wars can will challenge Jurassic World's supremacy from the first half.
Are you like "shut up about 'they year is half over'?"
If your answer to that question is 'yes,' too bad. It is! It's been a decent year thus far in cinema but also a curiously shallow one in terms of mainstream films worth getting excited about. So many weekends have been bereft of interesting or exciting looking choice that it's kind of no wonder that Jurassic World was breaking box office records. It had no competition for like a whole month, aside from the surprise excellence of Inside Out.
Halfway There ~ Year in Review. Nine Parts
pt. 1 Oscar Acting Chart
pt. 2 10 Best Leading Performances
pt. 3 Animation from Strange Magic to Inside Out
pt. 4 Ubiquitous Alicia Vikander
pt. 5 Oscar Chart Updates - All Categories
pt. 6 Best Supporting Performances
pt. 7 Top Ten List
pt. 8 Best Screen Animals
pt. 9 Eye Candy