Upcoming Articles (For Next Two Weeks):
Film Reviews: Spotlight, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay- Part 2, Room, The Night Before, Creed, and The Good Dinosaur
Indie Double Feature: Suffragette with By the Sea AND Brooklyn with Trumbo
Horror Double Feature: Krampus and Victor Frankenstein
Star Wars Series Reviews
OPENING THIS WEEK:
Wide: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay- Part 2, The Night Before, and The Secret in Their Eyes
Limited: Carol and Legend (Will Await Both of These)
Expansions to Watch: Spotlight, Room, and By the Sea
OPENING NEXT WEEK:
Wide: Creed, The Good Dinosaur, and Victor Frankenstein
Limited: The Danish Girl
Expansions to Watch: Brooklyn and Trumbo
- This is a packed week and a half thanks to next week’s Thanksgiving early debuts. Although I have not been a big proponent of The Hunger Games, the new film looks like an improvement over its predecessor. The same goes for some of the Seth Rogen comedy, he’s a bit hit and miss for me, but this film actually looks funny. Early reviews are decent for both of these. (We will be skipping Secret in Their Eyes after bad reviews and the large collection of other options.)
- There’s also five big Indie films that are definitely expanding nation-wide. Spotlight is excellent, a review of that will be coming soon, but many Oscar experts are predicting that Spotlight and Room are both shoe-ins, so I’m pretty stoked to see Room. Brooklyn looks like a cute, interesting romance that could have Oscar implications, and although reviews were mixed, it appears Bryan Cranston has finally made it into film with Trumbo. Finally, By the Sea still interests me, despite poor reviews.
- The three limited releases that we will not get until after Thanksgiving are all solid reviewed films. Both Carol and The Danish Girl seem anchored by a great lead (Cate Blanchett, Eddie Redmayne) and a great supporting actor (Rooney Mara, Alicia Vikander). Both of these films are progressively minded and look very powerful. Also, Legend with Tom Hardy will be awesome to watch, at the very least.
- The Thanksgiving wide releases are the Rocky spin-off Creed, the Frankenstein reboot no one asked for in Victor Frankenstein, and the newest Pixar film The Good Dinosaur. I may sneak out and see Victor Frankenstein, but it seems the obvious winners here will be the Pixar movie about dinosaurs (that’s awesome) and the surprisingly poignant new Rocky film starring Michael B. Jordan as Apollo Creed’s son.
BOX OFFICE RECAP AND PROJECTIONS:
- Spectre $34M-Total:$129M-Week:#2
- The Peanuts Movie $24M-Total:$82M-Week:#2
- Love the Coopers $8M-Total:$8M-Week:#1
- The Martian $7M-Total:$207M-Week:#7
- The 33 $6M-Total:$6M-Week:#1
- Goosebumps $5M-Total:$73M-Week:#5
- Bridge of Spies $4M-Total:$62M-Week:#5
- Prem Ratan Dhan Payo $2M-Total:$2M-Week:#1
- Hotel Transylvania 2 $2M-Total:$165M-Week:#8
- The Last Witch Hunter $1M-Total:$26M-Week:#4
- It wasn’t surprise for anyone when both Spectre and The Peanuts Movie held the top two spots, but what was a little surprising was how much Spectre dropped by. Frankly, a two week, less than 130 million total is not as much as they would’ve wanted, and it’s very possible that it could fall as low as fourth next week.
- Both wide releases, The 33 and Love the Coopers opened to poor reviews and even worse box office numbers. Both will suffer stiff fall-offs.
- Finally, The Martian crossed the 200 million dollar mark. A congrats should be in order for one of the year’s most fun films.
Projected Top Ten: 1. Hunger Games: Mockingjay- Part 2…2. The Night Before…3. Spectre…4. The Peanuts Movie…5. The Secret In Their Eyes…6. The Martian…7. Love the Coopers…8. The 33…9. Spotlight…10. Bridge of Spies
TOP NEWS STORIES:
-There will be an indie Memento remake from a brand-new studio that will remain nameless, clearly in an effort to get film publicity. It’s a disgusting ploy for attention, and an even more disgusting misuse of a great, early 2000s thriller.
-Peter Jackson publicly denounced his Hobbit trilogy, stating that he didn’t really know what he was doing most of the time during the production, and alluded to an overall sense of disorganization with the films…wow, you don’t say. I never noticed…
ACTOR IN FOCUS…BEST AND WORST OF JENNIFER LAWRENCE!
Best: Silver Linings Playbook as Tiffany Maxwell
Honorable Mentions: American Hustle, Winter’s Bone, and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
- Lawrence’s Oscar win came from Silver Linings Playbook, an adaptation of a Matthew Quick novel and sincerely improved upon it in David O’Russell’s breakthrough follow-up to The Fighter. Here, Lawrence patented her damaged, quirky, intelligent trio of adjectives to describe almost every character she’s played, like a better acted version of Zooey Deschanel’s evil twin. She steals every scene in this movie, and is excellent. As I said with Bradley Cooper a few weeks ago, Silver Linings Playbook is in my Top Movies Since 2010 category easily.
- As for the honorable mentions, she did also play in O’Russell’s next film American Hustle, a slightly muddled plot but bailed out by amazing dialogue and performances. She’s part of a greater ensemble, and does a fine job. Winter’s Bone was obviously her breakthrough performance, her first Oscar nomination, and the role that really put her on the map. It’s touching, powerful, and an excellent film. Finally, Catching Fire is just a great action movie. Not a fan of The Hunger Games, but this film is really well-made.
Worst: The House at the End of the Street as Elissa Cassidy
Honorable Mentions: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay- Part 1
- I will happily say that outside of the Mockingjay Part 1 mess that she’s in and doesn’t quite get her performance right, it’s not fair to criticize her performances in movies that outside of her are disasters, but she nearly saves. I would point to Serena as an example of this, where her and Bradley Cooper do a fine job, but the film is a little messy.
- As for HATES, as the trailer called it, every great actress has to play a scream queen once, and although this being a suspense-less, ball-less, crapshoot of a horror film, it’s not Lawrence’s fault in her defense. It just is never scary or interesting, just an even worse version of The Boy Next Door from the next year.
Top Ten in Sales Already Out:
- Jurassic World
- Terminator: Genisys
- Inside Out
- San Andreas (Missed This One in a Packed Summer)
- Pixels (Skipped This for Obvious Reasons)
- The Gift
- Paper Towns (Will See This Eventually)
- Magic Mike XXL
–Vacation (Skipped for Obvious Reasons)
–Ricki and the Flash (I Will Get to This Eventually)
–Shaun the Sheep Movie (Want to See This)