Amir here, apologetic about the terrible pun in the headline, and bringing you the weekend’s numbers with a glass of wine and a pair of handcuffs.
Valentine’s Day just passed on by and more than any other year, it felt like a zenith for Capitalism and a nadir for humanity. 50 Shades of Grey came close to breaking February’s all-time record thanks to a massive audience who, going by the statistical reports of their age, mostly went to see what their mothers are secretly into. I won’t be watching the film until tomorrow night – I haven’t spent more than the cheap Tuesday ticket price on any film that won the weekend’s box office since… Toy Story 3? – so I’ll reserve my opinion on the film, but I’m genuinely looking forward to it. No, really. (Here's Nathaniel's review) Public response has been mixed, and if you, like Ana and me, are feeling masochistic, have a look at any conversation about the film on twitter and pull your hair in frustration at the short-sightedness, mob mentality and unbearable zero tolerance policies that are increasingly dominating our film discourse.
TOP OF THE BOX OFFICE
Click on the highlighted titles for past articles on that film
01 50 SHADES OF GREY $85 new review
02 KINGSMEN: THE SECRET SERVICE $36.2 review soon
03 SPONGEBOB MOVIE $31.6 (cum. $94.8)
04 AMERICAN SNIPER $16.5 (cum. $304.2)
05 JUPITER ASCENDING $9.2 (cum. $32.3) podcast
06 PADDINGTON $4.1 (cum. $62.3)
07 SEVENTH SON $4.1 (cum. $13.4)
08 THE IMITATION GAME $3.5 (cum. $79.6)
09 THE WEDDING RINGER $3.4 (cum. $59.7)
10 PROJECT ALMANAC $2.7 (cum. $19.5)
11 BLACK OR WHITE $2.5 (cum. $17.3)
12 THE BOY NEXT DOOR $1.7 (cum. $33.7)
13 STILL ALICE $1.7 (cum. $4.6)
Kingsman: The Secret Service came a distant second with $35m, which is actually really strong. Add to that the international haul and this can be labelled a big success, especially considering that Colin Firth has only ever had two films open above 20 million, neither of which featured him in the lead. His highest opening ever, so congratulations to the Oscar-winning actor who might now have a spoof franchise on his hand.
Best Picture Watch: American Sniper is inching toward the top of the 2014 pile and by my estimation should be there in exactly 15 days. Whiplash finally passed the $10m mark, meaning that Winter’s Bone remains the last English language Oscar nominee to fail to break out of single digits (at $6.5m).
Toronto was at a whopping -41 degrees this weekend, so I didn't muster the courage to leave the house for a film, but I rewatched, among other things, The Grand Budapest Hotel, which is still my favourite of the best picture nominees by a wide margin. What did you watch this weekend?