Film Reviews: Burnt
Indie Double Feature: Beasts of No Nation and Truth
Series Review: The Twilight Saga
Weekly NBA and NFL Column
OPENING THIS WEEK:
Wide: Burnt, Our Brand is Crisis, Scout’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse
Limited: The Wonders, Freaks of Nature
Expansion to Watch: Truth and The Intern
- This is a slow week because of Halloween being a weekend holiday this year. Burnt and Our Brand is Crisis were clearly placed here to be Oscar runs for Bradley Cooper and Sandra Bullock, but both movies have turned in poor reviews. I was originally scheduled to see Our Brand is Crisis but cut it out of my weekly rotation to make sure I made time for Truth, an expansion indie film starring Robert Redford and Cate Blanchett that has generated a bit of controversy. I will review it along side of Netflix Original Release, Beasts of No Nation, a film that was worth the wait. A Burnt review will also come out, but there was no reason to see Scout’s Guide, it looks just awful. Also, The Intern will be adding some additional theaters for an awards-season run, possibly to try to get some comedy-award attention.
BOX OFFICE RECAP AND PROJECTIONS:
- The Martian– $16M- Total: $166M– Week:#4
- Goosebumps- $16M- Total: $44M- Week:#2 (N/A)
- Bridge of Spies- $11M- Total: $33M- Week:#2
- The Last Witch Hunter- $11M- Total: $11M- Week: #1 (N/A)
- Hotel Transylvania 2- $9M- Total: $148M– Week:#5 (N/A)
- Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension- $8M- Total: $8M- Week:#1 (N/A)
- Steve Jobs– $7M- Total: $10M- Week: #3
- Crimson Peak- $6M- Total: $23M- Week: #2
- The Intern- $4M- Total: $65M– Week: #5
- Sicario– $3M- Total: $39M- Week: #6
- All new releases this week tanked as The Last Witch Hunter was the only one to crack the Top 5. Because of a dispute with theater chains, Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension was shown in less than 2,000 theaters and was unable to take a weekend that it otherwise could have in a normal wide release format. Other notable releases Jem and the Holograms and Rock the Kasbah debuted outside of the Top 10 and with some considerably atrocious reviews.
- Meanwhile, Steve Jobs’ expansion went very poorly and although being projected to take the top spot, grossing in the high teens, it only manufactured seven million dollars despite great reviews and marketable actors. It could have staying power through good word of mouth, however.
- The Martian, Goosebumps, and Hotel Transylvania 2 continued their runs of multi-week success because of non-appetizing new releases. Expect them to perform well next week as well. Bridge of Spies looks to factor into future weeks as well, with a solid week 2 performance. At the bottom, The Intern and Sicario both continue to stick around.
- Projected Top 10: 1. The Martian, 2. Goosebumps, 3. Burnt, 4. Bridge of Spies, 5. Our Brand is Crisis, 6. Hotel Transylvania 2, 7. Scout’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse, 8. Steve Jobs, 9. The Last Witch Hunter, 10. Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension
TOP NEWS STORIES:
-It seems that the casting of Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk in Thor: Ragnarok could be a ploy to improve the film’s box office draw. It’s no secret that Thor isn’t as popular as some of his Avengers brethren, so making this a Thor/Hulk buddy film could be very beneficial to it being a well-consumed part of the Marvel brand, plus, no one complains when Mark Ruffalo gets more chances to act.
-The other interesting bit of news from the week is the announcement of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child as a play that will be circulating through the United States. Although Rowling herself has decided to keep the material as just a play, it doesn’t mean that Warner Brothers isn’t gonna try to sway her, so there could be new movies.
ACTOR IN FOCUS…BEST AND WORST OF BRADLEY COOPER
Best: Silver Linings Playbook as Pat Solitano Jr.
- It’s tough to pick for Cooper, especially after three straight Oscar nominations in three years, but this is his crowning achievement and his true breakout role that moved him away from the comedy/romance genres into something bigger, and here, he succeeded in getting his first nomination. He plays someone with bipolar disorder perfectly, and while spitting out fast-paced and witty David O’Russell dialogue, Cooper became a powerhouse actor opposite Jennifer Lawrence in her best performance as well. This is one of the best films of this century, and Cooper is a main reason for its success.
Honorable Mentions: American Sniper as Chris Kyle, American Hustle as Richie DiMaso, and The Place Beyond the Pines as Avery Cross.
- It was tough to choose his Silver Linings Playbook role over the excellent Clint Eastwood directed American Sniper, in a powerful, energetic performance. Sniper was one of the best films of 2014, and Cooper was the end-all, be-all of the tense war drama. It’s also worth noting that he nailed his work in American Hustle and The Place Beyond the Pines as well.
Worst: All About Steve as Steve Miller
Honorable Mentions: The A-Team and The Hangover Parts II and III
- It’s a tough call to give Cooper a poor performance, because these movies are poorly written comedies that have little to do with him, but they qualify here. Case 39 would also qualify but his part isn’t quite big enough, same with Valentine’s Day.
OUT ON REDBOX FOR RENT:
San Andreas (Didn’t Get to This One)
The End of the Tour (I have personally out-righted Jason Segal from my rotation)
She’s Funny that Way and Digging for Fire (Never Expanded)
Top 5 Already Out in Overall Rentals:
Pixels (Skipped this for Obvious Reasons)