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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Estimates by Klady’s Disappointing 54

Weekend Estimates 2013-07-28 at 10.02.18 AM

Not much more to say about the weekend from yesterday, really.

The 1 – 4 for the indie summer looks different after this weekend. It’s now <b>Way Way Back, Before Midnight, Fruitvale</b>, and <b>Bling</b>. And this order will change again, probably every weekend for the next few, as <b>Blue Jasmine</b> jumps the line and <b>Fruitvale</b> and <b>Way Back</b> continue to expand and either find longer reach or not.

It may not be skyrockets at the box office, but it is going to be a really great August for movie lovers at the arthouse. Every single weekend, there will be at least two compelling new indie films coming out.

Ont he wide release front, there should be solid numbers next weekend, but people are really hoping for some fireworks on the second weekend of August with <b>Elysium, Planes, Millers</b>, and the franchise that almost no one talks about, <b>Percy Jackson</b>. Not everyone is likely to be thrilled, but will there be a big disappointment or a big surprise? Only time will tell, though 2 of the 4 films decided to go out on Wednesday instead of Friday, so we’ll have an early hint of the weekend to come.

63 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Klady’s Disappointing 54”

  1. Eric says:

    The Wolverine number kind of reminds of Batman Begins. It’s a midsummer superhero movie meant to restart a franchise whose previous entry was universally reviled, and it opened okay but certainly softer than previous entries.

    I haven’t seen it so I don’t know if the quality is there to give it the same legs and setup for a bigger sequel.

  2. Joe Leydon says:

    I know I’ve said this sort of thing before, but: We live in an age when a $54 million opening-weekend gross is considered “soft” or, worse, disappointing. Wow.

  3. Gus says:

    And with international I think it’s like $140M in 3 days for a movie budgeted at like $130M. “Disappointing” indeed. All relative I suppose but DP’s point about WWZ being sold as a success by virtue of its managed expectations is spot on.

  4. Tuck Pendelton says:

    Expectations Joe, expectations.

  5. jepressman says:

    Oh well Hollywood enthusiasm is strange and the misery index is as well. However there were great movies on TCM Friday and Saturday: The Last Metro, Day for Night, My Favorite Year and Diner, all excellent viewing. Those scripts were compelling, interesting and I can’t tell you how many times they’ve been watched by me.Oh and every single film was populated with grown-up adult characters, even Diner.

  6. anghus says:

    X-Men Origins: Wolverine may have a franchise killer for the solo film. It was so bad. Laughably awful in so many ways. From the acting, to the horrific special FX. It’s like a master class in poisoning the well.

    The fact that The Wolverine is quite an excellent piece of summer movie making kind of proves that the success or failure of the previous effort isn’t as important as perception of success in terms of movie quality.

    A movie has to at least be seen as average to keep the installments doing well. The first Wolverine was seen by many as being just terrible, and because of that a good follow up gets a 54 million dollar opening.

    I’m with Joe on the wow-ness of everybody freaking out about a 50 million dollar opening. The movie ‘only’ cost 120 million. Worldwide should end up around 400+ million. At that budget, that’s a nice win for Fox. People expecting Iron Man 3 numbers all the time need to put down the crack pipe. If you can make a good comic book movie, keep the budget around 100 million, you can make it a viable franchise. But we have to get away from the notion that 150 million domestic/250 million international is a rotting failure. If only Hollywood could keep the budgets under 120 million, the industry would be more robust, take more chances, and have a better chance at launching new franchises.

    Hollywood needs to abandon the idea of ‘epic’ for every movie. Why did Jack the Giant Slayer have to turn into a giant LOTR inspired war movie at the end? More blockbusters need to turn inwards and stop playing a CGI pissing contest to see who can have more stuff exploding big on screen.

    Bigger is killing the blockbuster.

  7. Chris says:

    I’m not sure I buy the “expectations” thing on “World War Z.” It’s going to end up around half a billion, worldwide. Yes, it shouldn’t have cost what it did but, by any measure, that is a great result, especially for a movie that, even before the expectation-managing, appeared to be an ending-reshot, star-not-speaking-to-director, delayed-release-date disaster.

  8. brack says:

    Bought and watched the Wolverine Xmen Origins movie to get a free The Wolverine ticket. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, but there just wasn’t much there, and Deadpool was wasted (why was his mouth sealed at the end?). I can understand the hate and how it has hurt The Wolverine’s opening.

    The Wolverine should have been the first Wolverine movie. I liked it quite a bit. Not great, very predictable, but still a solid comic book movie. The film’s opening can’t really be seen as disappointing when the first Wolverine movie was so disappointing.

    The film’s ending was a nice touch, and probably the right direction for the character of Wolverine in future films.

  9. The Pope says:

    What do we make of Blue Jasmine? Hard to tell of course, given the number of screens. Dare anyone say it will hit Vicky numbers, or Match Point? My guess is that it is too angry (and uneven) to get anywhere near Paris. Still, it’s an promising start.

  10. Nick says:

    Lol @ everyone thinking origins has anything to do with the wolverine’s opening. Just like pacific rim, the trailer sucked. If ever there was a character to make dark and edgy this is the one…and yet they make it soft like raimis Spider-Man.

  11. amblinman says:

    The film was fairly dark for a PG-13 movie. Comparing it to Raimi’s Spider-Man suggests either you haven’t seen The Wolverine or you haven’t seen one of Raimi’s Spider-Man movies.

    As far as B.O., there is also a chance that maybe people are kinda burned out on comic book movies by this point in summer? We’re beaten into submission from May on now.

  12. Joe Leydon says:

    Amblinman: You beat me to the punch. Hey, it’s like every other cycle in film history. The spy spoofs, the roadshow-attraction musicals, the Halloween knockoffs, the post-Smokey and the Bandit demolition derbies, the Dirty Harry clones — sooner or later, the law of diminishing returns kicks in, and ticketbuyers decide they want something else.

  13. Triple Option says:

    I’m not sure if I was down on the trailer for The Wolverine because of the quality of the trailer itself or if I was thinking it didn’t do enough to convince me it was going to wash off the blandness of Wolverine. And seriously, they couldn’t have come up with a better or at least more distinct title than THE Wolverine when the last was just called Wolverine? Oh, X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Yeah, how helpful. Knowing that will win you a free beer at some trivia night. Why not call it Wolverine: Take 2?

    Anyway, I saw it and while I think it was better than the first Wolverine, there was nothing to distinguish it from any of the other films of its genre. No great fight scenes. Emotional pain was marginal. Even what could have been the biggest stunt sequence was devoid of any real tension because of the silly, overwrought use of cg.

    Maybe there are a lot of unreasonable expectations about how these movies are going to fair but they’re certainly not going to reach stratosphere levels with middling product on the screen. I’m not a comics geek but have really enjoyed some of these films but even as a passing fan am not looking forward to seeing this genre run into the ground.

  14. anghus says:

    “We’re beaten into submission from May on now”

    Yes. This.

    And Captain America: The Winter Soldier opens on April 4th next year. Going to be a looooooong Summer.

  15. RRA says:

    THE WOLVERINE was a solid actioneer, a good afternoon killer. I honestly enjoyed it more than MAN OF STEEL, better paced too.

    Short-term TW was screwed hard by ORIGINS, which left a bad taste in everybody’s mouth. But the fan reaction has been positive, decent WOM, long term this nice buzz will drive up the hype even more for DAYS OF FUTURE PAST next summer.

    If you want to be perverse, TW was a fun trailer for DOFP.

  16. Amblinman says:

    @Triple opt: you didn’t like the bullet train sequence? That one set piece was more fun than anything we’ve seen from one of these movies in quite a while.

  17. Triple Option says:

    Amblin, I thought I would like it more. I felt like I shoulda gripping the arms of my seat like when I was watching whatsherface on the hood of the car in Death Proof or some of the race sequences in Senna. Cool concept, but I didn’t feel the peril.

  18. RRA says:

    Triple Option – I was more amused than thrilled with that train sequence. I laughed at the characters using cartoon logic and use gravity and the train’s momentum to move and attack each other.

    Of course I loved FAST & FURIOUS 6, so go figure.

  19. Steven Kaye says:

    Love how Poland ignores Blue Jasmine’s stellar performance.

  20. berg says:

    i love how you go to imdb.com and Blackfish … Tilicum … Himself

  21. movieman says:

    I’ll be very surprised if “2 Guns” and “Smurfs 2″ both don”t open above $30-million next weekend.
    Denzel’s incredibly reliable, Wahlberg’s semi slump (“Broken City,” “P&G”) will be officially over, and “Smurfs” looks like the last kiddie movie of the season that could conceivably hit $100-million.
    Hearing good buzz on “Millers,” but I’m still not convinced. The only “screening” here is the night before it opens.
    Admittedly that date was set when the movie was slated to open on the 9th. But WB never bothered changing the day (or adding an add’l, earlier promo). Too bad.
    As I’ve stated elsewhere, “Elysium”–particularly the new trailer–looks fantastic. But I’d be really, really shocked (pleasantly shocked, but shocked nonetheless) if it opens better than “Pacific Rim.”
    Wasn’t a fan of the first Percy Jackson movie, but the new one looks like cheesy, early-’60s Disney-style (think “In Search of the Castaways” or “Swiss Family Robinson”) fun.
    And does anybody think that “Planes” (originally slated as a direct-to-video title) can possibly fare any better than “Turbo”?
    Nope, didn’t think so.

  22. anghus says:

    Steven Kaye reminds me of those people who post on The Hollywood Reporter following links from Drudge:

    They have only one thing to say and say it so often that you wonder why they even bother taking the time to put it into writing.

    Steven, you’re no different than the guy who pops in every blue moon to talk about the antisemitism in Drive. You have only one thing to say, and you’ve said it so many times that no one cares. Because you have no interest in discussion, only declaration.

    You love Woody Allen and unabashedly hail everything he does as a financial and critical success. We know your opinion without you even having to state it. I’ve seen chat bots with more creative latitude.

    Your singular opinion would be much better served on a website where people like to discuss Woody Allen and your cries of ‘being ignored’ may actually be read by people who care.

    And i might be convinced to care if you spent any posts on anything other than Woody Allen. You’re both a one trick pony & beating a dead horse. You’re the king of equine metaphors.

  23. Chris says:

    Not sure what this means, movieman, but there are multiple (and early) screenings of “Miller” here.

  24. movieman says:

    Maybe they were just too lazy (or disinterested) to bother adding an add’l promo in the Cleveland market, Chris.
    Like I said, I’ve heard good buzz on the movie, but I guess I’ll just have to wait until it opens to see whether the buzz-meisters got it right this time.
    Or as full of shit as they were in their ecstatic tub-thumping of the thoroughly mediocre “Conjuring.”

  25. anghus says:

    I dont get the James Wan love. I thought Insidious was silly. The Conjuring is a well produced yawner. But i think with horror we’re in this place where the bar has been set so low that anything remotely classic in structure is getting heaps of praise. Last year people were telling me how good The Woman in Back was. “classic Hammer” they exclaimed. But it was really boring and not even remotely scary.

    And the kudos for Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, which was one of the dumbest movies in recent memory…

    Horror is in such a sorry state right now that they will crown anything a hair above average as their new king.

    The only interesting horror filmmaker doing anything good consistently is Ti West.

  26. Paul Doro says:

    Also a big Ti West fan. I didn’t really like Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, and I have always hated James Wan. Insidious is really dumb, and I hate Saw, Death Sentence, and Dead Silence. I do think The Conjuring is the best movie he has made, by far. He kind of botches the end with overkill and then schmaltz, but most of it is well-made, well-acted, and effectively creepy, even if nothing is new or groundbreaking. But one solid movie hardly makes Wan the King of Horror or anything like that. I think there’s decent horror out there, but it’s mainly on the margins, indie and foreign fare. I liked The Bay, which I just saw.

  27. Bulldog68 says:

    I think Elysium will open slightly better than Pacific Rim due to Matt Damon. In the right role, he opens well. The Bourne Identity opened to $27m in 02, and that was before he was known as an action star. On paper, with his increased prowess, and Blomkamps good cred from District 9, I’m thinking an opening $45-$50m on the high end and $35-$40m on the low end. Hopefully it can at least due Prometheus numbers, but that’s my personal wish.

  28. The Big Perm says:

    anghus, have you SEEN any classic Hammer? Boring and not scary kind of defines them.

    Are you a horror fan? Insidious was okay…got a little silly at the end, but it was pretty good. Woman in Black was pretty classic, again not like AMAZING, but interesting. The middle third where it was just the guy in the house was pretty great.

    Ti West is sort of a bore…I thought House of the Devil was oookaay…but was it really heads above The Woman in Black? It was kind of a decent, average little horror movie. The Innkeepers was good as long as they weren’t doing horror, when they went to the ghost it was cheesy…I don’t think he does horror well, what he does is make a pretty good movie that has horror in it. But the weakest aspect of his movies are the horror content. His segment of VHS was the worst.

  29. Paul Doro says:

    House of the Devil and The Innkeepers are vastly superior to Insidious and The Woman in Black. Not even close. Insidious is laughably bad in the home stretch. Those ghost hunter guys are excruciating and out of an entirely different movie. Any promise in the first half is a distant memory by the time it’s over. The Woman in Black looks nice, and Radcliffe is decent, but it’s mostly a bore. Lots of boo scares, and the ending is terrible. I hated the story behind the ghost. Innkeepers and House of the Devil aren’t perfect, but they are better than Woman in Black, and almost anything is better than Insidious. That one is just terrible.

  30. The Big Perm says:

    I bet most would disagree with you. I didn’t love Insidious, but I think terrible is a bit much. House of the Devil could have used a jump scare or two…oh no, your pizza’s getting cold. Or the scary minute long shot of a phone ringing. You know, like the 70s!

  31. Dr Wally Rises says:

    I will be there front and center for Elysium, but Isn’t the running time meant to be 1 hour 30 plus change? I’m all for the arguments against bloated franchise epics cluttering up the marketplace the past few years, but a fully realised futuristic epic that doesn’t give us any time to luxuriate in it’s sci-fi world or give us the chance to appreciate the little details in it’s design and conception? Smells a little off to me.

  32. The Big Perm says:

    IMDB has it at 109 minutes.

  33. Paul Doro says:

    I know a lot of people like Insidious. I am fine with that. The last 30-45 minutes are indeed terrible, basically as soon as those kooky ghost hunters show up. In the end, though it starts out OK, it’s a very bad movie.

    An occasional jump scare or two isn’t the end of the world. I remember thinking Woman in Black had too many of them. Also (and SPOILERS here if anyone cares) I hate it when the ghost is just sad or misunderstood, and in need of a good hug. Hated the ending.

  34. anghus says:

    I’m a horror fan. But i suppose if i’m being honest, im more of a cheeseball horror fan. My favorites are stuff like the Evil Deads, Night of the Living Dead (original), 28 Days Later, Prom Night (original), Texas Chainsaw Massacre (original), etc. I like my horror a little broad. So i don’t mind if horror films get a little silly. I just find Wan’s stuff trying to take itself way too seriously and it ends up being no fun. I think good horror films make you laugh as much as they make you cringe. I thought the new Evil Dead was a hell of a lot of fun and i laughed during a lot of scenes where people were getting dismembered.

    I liked Scream a lot back in the day. That felt like everything that i enjoyed about 70’s horror films. Scary, bloody, but hell bent on entertaining the audience.

    Trying to make horror films cool is such a waste of time. To that i give you the vast majority of the Platinum Dunes horror remakes. Utterly joyless affairs.

  35. Paul Doro says:

    I really enjoyed the Evil Dead remake as well. And yeah Platinum Dunes offerings are the worst. So slick and empty. Anyone here seen You’re Next? I know it’s played a lot of festivals. Really want to see it. And I’m hoping Riddick is as fun as Pitch Black, which I like a lot, even though it basically looks like a remake of PB.

  36. YancySkancy says:

    I’m no expert on Hammer horror films by a long shot, but their 60s psychological thrillers, such as Freddie Francis’s PARANOIAC and Seth Holt’s THE NANNY, are great.

  37. celluloidkid says:

    “I will be there front and center for Elysium, but Isn’t the running time meant to be 1 hour 30 plus change? I’m all for the arguments against bloated franchise epics cluttering up the marketplace the past few years, but a fully realised futuristic epic that doesn’t give us any time to luxuriate in it’s sci-fi world or give us the chance to appreciate the little details in it’s design and conception? Smells a little off to me.”

    I had the same thought. Apparently, the cut for the test screenings was almost 3 hours?! How do you cut that down to less than 2? Seems like that might be a completely different movie. On a somewhat related note, there’s conflicting online rumors that Sony is holding back on press screenings for online critics ’til closer to the release. Not sure what that’s about.

  38. Dr Wally Rises says:

    Yes,exactly. Dredd was a recent major sci-fi movie that worked like a dream at 95 minutes, but that was a pretty self-contained, claustrophobic thriller. The trailers for Elysium seem to be selling us on the movie’s scope and epic scale, so even the 109 minutes quoted on IMDB seem low for the kind of movie that I’d been led to expect. Still hope it turns out to be the genre classic that people seem to want it to be, but at this point, I’m looking forward to seeing Riddick more.

  39. movieman says:

    Sony is holding back on press screenings for online critics ’til closer to the release.

    I don’t know what bloggers are doing, Celluloid, but the Cleveland press screening isn’t until Tuesday afternoon the 6th.
    The fact that Sony is doing an actual PRESS screening (versus their usual, groan, promotional) is a sign of confidence.

  40. celluloidkid says:

    Thanks movieman. This whole summer has been a sea of “mehs” for me personally with Mud being the only movie I really liked, so I’ve been hoping Elysium would bring something interesting.

  41. Steven Kaye says:

    As expected, Klady’s estimates for Blue Jasmine were way off. Where in the world does he get his data from? Actuals are in, and it made an incredible $612,064, with a PTA of $102,011. That’s a career-high for Woody Allen and, of course, the best this year.

    Other movies debuted and expanded but they are naturally not worth considering.

  42. anghus says:

    “As expected, Klady’s estimates for Blue Jasmine were way off. Where in the world does he get his data from? Actuals are in, and it made an incredible $612,064, with a PTA of $102,011. That’s a career-high for Woody Allen and, of course, the best this year.

    Other movies debuted and expanded but they are naturally not worth considering.”

    There is no one on this board that offers less to the discussion than you Mr. Kaye. Not even Lex who spends drunken nights screaming about suicide and white pussy.

    You’re in a discussion with no one. It’s as if you make comments in places like this simply to footnote things for historical accuracy, and i find that both sad and fascinating. I’m half convinced you’re some kind of PR spam bot like those ones that pop up after a few posts and advertise low cost sneakers.

    Some basic google-ing has told me you have a social media presence on Twitter with 6 followers. And every comment i can find skimming the first few pages of google returns is in reference to a Woody Allen film.

    Are you one of those odd sycophants like a Sarah Palin admirer who feels obligated to get online and stand up for a position that no one is arguing against? Or do you have some kind of tie to Mr. Allen and scour the web to correct perceived wrongdoings.

    Who is Steven Kaye? Other than ‘the guy currently boring everybody on this site but me’

  43. christian says:

    If all Kaye is doing is pimping Woody without a clue, I’m cool. Until he starts doing it in repeated caps.

  44. Joe Leydon says:

    Well, Steven, I guess it should be obvious by now: Klady and Poland just don’t like Woody Allen. Why? That should be equally obvious: They’re anti-Semites. It’s a damn shame, but here you go.

  45. anghus says:

    “If all Kaye is doing is pimping Woody without a clue, I’m cool. Until he starts doing it in repeated caps.”

    At least Lex has moments of lucidity where he offers something relevant to the conversations.

    All Kaye does is come in an advertise the box office successes (or perceived successes) of Woody Allen films. He doesn’t participate in any way, shape, or form.

    Even if he was just a guy who loved Woody Allen and talked about his love for the films. If he expressed anything at all or participated in any level of discussion. He’s merely a Woody Allen box office spambot. And i think that’s even more sad than Mr. Gilbert who at least provides some humor and insight every now and again.

  46. Jermsguy says:

    Steven Kaye is back! And he will be back every week until Blue Jasmine leaves theaters. I think Kaye is heir to the fortune of the guy who invested the Windsor font, so it’s in his best interest to pimp Woody Allen everywhere, and only Woody Allen, and always have nothing but praise. Viva la Windsor font!

  47. anghus says:

    On paper, a movie like Lee Daniels’ The Butler seems like something i’d want to see. Then i saw the photo gallery from Entertainment Weekly.

    Holy shit does this look like it could have the potential to devolve into hilarity. Almost every photo in here is borderline hysterical. At one point in the photo captions they say “It’s sad that Oprah Winfrey and Forrest Whitaker can’t get a film greenlighted.”

    Well, Oprah could have funded the entire movie herself without batting an eyelash. And isnt this idea of not being able to get a movie about African American characters off the ground the same tired shit George Lucas was pushing with Red Tails? Why does any director go that route. All you do with that is poison the well.

    NO ONE WANTED TO GREEN LIGHT MY MOVIE STARRING OPRAH AND FORREST WHITAKER!

    Shocking, that is. Oprah? The star of Beloved? The talk show host worth a billion dollars whose been in two movies? No studio wanted to write a check so that the billionaire queen of media could star in oscar bait? Yikes.

    And the stars they brought in. Cusak as Nixon? Rickman and Fonda as the Reagans? Oh man. It’s like those awful stills of Streep as Thatcher with those buggy eyes and crooked teeth.

    After The Butler photos they have that picture perfect visage of Daniel Day Lewis as Lincoln which only makes The Butler photos look that much more comical. Even the sets in the photos look like sound stages.

    And your first picture is Mariah Carey? Wow, seriously. Someone get the publicity people for that film and force them to sit through Glitter and that monstrosity of a movie with Mina Sorvino that actually played at Sundance. You lead with Mariah Carey? For a film you’re pushing as a serious Oscar contender?

    Simply mind blowing.

    Edit – Not sure why the link isn’t working. [ed: link fixed above]

    Edit 2 – Not sure who fixed my link, but thank you.

  48. leahnz says:

    wouldn’t it be hilarious if steven kaye was woody himself doing some weird incognito annoying self-promotion and horn-tooting? haha

    nobody seems to mention ‘sinister’ when discussing the new wave of horror, is it a no-go zone or something? i thought it was pretty decent (i didn’t find insidious or anything else recently for that matter scary at all). my son and his friend watched my dvd of medak’s ‘the changling’ with george c scott a few nights ago on a sleepover and i had to leave the door open and the hall light on for them all night, now that’s a creepy fucking movie.

  49. The Big Perm says:

    See anghus, there’s the disconnect…you like a certain kind of horror. I love horror in all its forms, I think it’s a great artform. I love all of those movies you listed, but I wouldn’t call them cheeseball. But I think so many horror movies have been self-referential or taking the piss out of themselves for so long, it’s nice to get some good, scary ones. And I don’t think Wan’s all that great, and I haven’t gotten to see The Conjuring yet, but I’d like to.

    The Evil Dead remake…they were so close. They actually had a good idea to differentiate it from the original, then did nothing with the concept. I kept waiting for her to be getting worse and worse, and everyone’s blaming the drugs but it’s just her being possessed. Instead, they just basically made a Platinum Dunes version, which was slick and empty and stupid. It needed an extra ten minutes of character stuff and mood. The gore was great, but that was ALL it had going for it. And the big creature at the end was pretty pathetic, I mean, that as the climax? A skinny dude who seemed less scary than any of the possessed people?

    Anyway…god horror films that don’t make you laugh…The Haunting, The Exorcist, Don’t Look Now, The Descent, Jacob’s Ladder, Repulsion, Carival of Souls, The Blair Witch. I don’t think Texas Chainsaw or Night of the Living Dead are funny.

  50. anghus says:

    Maybe I’m wired wrong.

  51. The Big Perm says:

    Well, not to be insulting…but I’d guess you may be bringing a snarky attitude to them.

  52. anghus says:

    No. Its not that. I just find brutal gory violence amusing. I’ve helped make a few horror films. My suspension of disbelief is nil. Watching leather face cleave through someone makes me laugh. I find good horror amusing, but its not shark. I’m not laughing at the film…

  53. christian says:

    Stephen Kaye will be around for a couple weeks. The other guy never leaves.

  54. YancySkancy says:

    Robin Williams as Dwight D. Eisenhower? Might have to see that to believe it. Odd that Daniels seems to be apologizing for casting names as the Presidents.

    As for Mariah Carey, say what you want about the bulk of her acting career, she was actually quite good in Daniels’ PRECIOUS.

  55. leahnz says:

    i’m as excited to see ‘europa report’ as i am ‘elysium’ but god only knows when the former will open here, i’m hugely envious

  56. hcat says:

    Hate to jump in on the Back in My Day conversation (and late to the party at that), but its not just the genre stuff that was better, but that there was alternatives to the genre stuff as well. This summer needs a Roxanne!!! Or something even breezier like a Doc Hollywood. Give me something where the stakes are two peoples happiness and not the fate of humanity. I want to spend a pleasent summer afternoon watching Emma Stone fall in love, is that too much to ask? Or have Universal try to capatilize on Les Mis by having a light musical with Hatheway and say Timberlake on deck?

  57. The Big Perm says:

    anghus, to me, if you’re watching Night of the Living Dead and laughing at the characters getting killed, then you’re pretty much laughing at the movie.

  58. Bulldog68 says:

    Williams did get some practice playing President when he was Roosevelt in Night at the Museum 1 & 2. Just sayin’.

  59. YancySkancy says:

    When a buddy of mine was writing a (never-made) Civil War epic for a production company several years ago, I actually suggested Robin Williams as potential casting for Ulysses S. Grant. And yeah, Teddy R. seemed like a good fit, too. But Eisenhower? Maybe he’ll surprise me.

  60. Joe Leydon says:

    Well, Tom Selleck managed to pull off Ike. So…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ike:_Countdown_to_D-Day

  61. hcat says:

    If they ever get around to making a Teddy R biopic, Russel Crowe would be the ideal pick.

    But when I think of Eisenhower I think of a slender guy (didn’t Sinese play him in an HBO film?). Williams seems to be much too husky for the role.

  62. movieman says:

    Finished my 3-movie day yesterday w/ a film I was literally dreading (“2 Guns”), but which wound up being (surprise) one of the (very) best of the season.
    The “Guns” trailer was so generic-looking that I could’ve sworn I’d
    already seen it. (At least 500 times in the past 20-30 years, in fact.)
    But what you can’t tell from the trailer/TV spots is that it’s really
    an homage to the stripped down, unapologetically nasty (and “R”-rated),
    down-and-dirty genre pics directors like Siegel, Hill and Peckinpah
    were making in the early ’70s.
    30 minutes in, I’d already come up w/ a new (and vastly superior)
    title: “Bring Me the Head of Charley Varrick.”
    Wahlberg and Washington are fine and fun together, and I wouldn’t even
    mind seeing them pair up for an eventual sequel.
    But the movie is stolen by the deliciously venal bad guys: Bill
    Paxton, Edward James Olmos and (believe it or not) James Marsden.
    Watching Marsden here, I kept thinking he should have played Ricky
    Nelson in a biopic 10-15 years ago. Oh well. I guess that ship has sailed.
    The script is tricky and full of double and even triple crosses. Yet
    its never too clever for its own good. (The whole thing actually makes
    sense. What a concept, huh?)
    The whiff of paranoia emanating from its core–a keen distrust of
    virtually every American institution/agency (the CIA, the DEA, the
    military)–is uber-70s, too, and even the objectification of its sole
    female presence (the lovely Paula Patton) felt very Peckinpah-ish. (Did
    she really need to be topless twice, Baltasar? Really?? Oh, well.)
    I kept waiting for it to fall apart by succumbing to the 21st century
    Hollywood action movie tendency to go big, bigger, biggest. But it
    never really does. In fact, the best scenes are intimate 2-and-3
    handers shot in tightly enclosed interiors.
    How refreshing is that?
    The film’s essential modesty and singular lack of pretension save the
    day.
    (The material feels very Tony Scott-ish. But I’m guessing Scott’s
    version would have been a lot more elaborately, even fussily tooled and
    visually bedazzling.)

  63. movieman says:

    Spoiler alert:
    The one distinctively ’00 touch about “2 Guns”–and what ultimately separates it from a true ’70s meller–is making Washington and Wahlberg pretend bad guys since they’re really undercover agents.
    In 1973, they would have been genuine criminals: likable crooks w/ a moral compass that separates them from the bad Bad Guys.

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
Title Gross Thtr % Chgn Cume
Venom 33 4250 NEW 33
A Star is Born 15.7 3686 NEW 15.7
Smallfoot 3.5 4131 -46% 31.3
Night School 3.5 3019 -63% 37.9
The House Wirh a Clock in its Walls 1.8 3463 -43% 49.5
A Simple Favor 1 2408 -50% 46.6
The Nun 0.75 2264 -52% 111.5
Hell Fest 0.6 2297 -70% 7.4
Crazy Rich Asians 0.6 1466 -51% 167.6
The Predator 0.25 1643 -77% 49.3
Also Debuting
The Hate U Give 0.17 36
Shine 85,600 609
Exes Baggage 75,900 62
NOTA 71,300 138
96 61,600 62
Andhadhun 55,000 54
Afsar 45,400 33
Project Gutenberg 36,000 17
Love Yatri 22,300 41
Hello, Mrs. Money 22,200 37
Studio 54 5,300 1
Loving Pablo 4,200 15
3-Day Estimates Weekend % Chg Cume
No Good Dead 24.4 (11,230) NEW 24.4
Dolphin Tale 2 16.6 (4,540) NEW 16.6
Guardians of the Galaxy 7.9 (2,550) -23% 305.8
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 4.8 (1,630) -26% 181.1
The Drop 4.4 (5,480) NEW 4.4
Let's Be Cops 4.3 (1,570) -22% 73
If I Stay 4.0 (1,320) -28% 44.9
The November Man 2.8 (1,030) -36% 22.5
The Giver 2.5 (1,120) -26% 41.2
The Hundred-Foot Journey 2.5 (1,270) -21% 49.4