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David Poland

By David Poland

Weekend Estimates by War For The Box Office Klady

Weekend Estimates 2017-07-16 at 11.38.51 AM

Apes: Volume 2 – Episode 3, as described yesterday, followed the pattern of a new box office niche. Establish a decent-sized domestic audience, maintain that audience, never grow much past that audience. Some of these audiences are bigger, obviously. Harry Potter, Twilight, and Rings all lived up in the $300 million neighborhood domestically before adding big international numbers. Then you have series like Divergent and Percy Jackson that are of a lower order. In the middle, Apes.

One of the new tricks attempt an uptick in stable franchises is to create a closer for the series. This trick has been connected, in the upper echelons, to the two-part closer, which is riskier now (though even with a downtick, the 50 Shades franchise seems sure to make a profit even on its third film).

So perhaps this is what Fox was thinking when it pushed the “This is the END” agenda on Apes 3: War.

Didn’t work.

At the risk of a spoiler, I would have suggested a pivot to the new idea out there, the franchise makeover. Ground the franchise to the series, but change the crew and the tone to get the next wave. This film could have been sold as “Apes: The Caesar Saga – The Finale.” I don’t think it would significantly changed the profile of this movie financially (or to shorten… wouldn’t have worked). But I do want to see the kinda-sorta-remake of Planet of the Apes that is the natural next step, unless they want to do a very political, chatty, human-free version of The Founding Of Ape-merica.

The industry is still figuring out how to effectively manage IP, while being distracted with the details of each individual film and its financial profile. The same is true of Netflix and content, though we are even earlier in the maturity of on-demand subscription based future… though the individual project distraction is cloaked by financial and result secrecy.

Marvel (shocker!) has the most success in building off center-brand, then bringing side brands into the big brand. One of the tools they are big on now is adding center-brand characters to slightly-off-brand movies as secondary leads. Hulk in the upcoming Thor. Iron Man in Spider-Man. Iron Man and then Ant-Man and Spider-Man in the third Captain America. Of course, most franchise plays don’t have this kind of range of characters to work with.

We have found, with two films, that off-center Star Wars films make management nervous.

Warner Bros has had a great success with its first non-Bat/Supes off-shoot, which followed the Marvel history closely, as Wonder Woman mirrors the first Captain America closely. At the same time, as they work to roll out individual JLA characters, they will be coming off the the JLA film, not the other way around, as Marvel has done.

There is a lot of talk about Tom Rothman doing a bunch of cheap superhero movies at Sony, spun off the Spider-Man rights. Anyone who is in this business should be applauding this move, as it could be a working model for others. And if it fails, only Tom gets hurt. Why would you care? Ideally, the cheaper model would allow for more aesthetic freedom and more interesting director choices.

One has to wonder what the meetings are like at Fox, where they have the X-Men and Fantastic Four in line for reboots and Deadpool all blown up. There really needs to be a 5-year-plan and a $2 billion commitment (inc P&A) to at least 7 films in this mini-universe and that should bring on IBS for any executive who is determining their heroism or death by 7 severe cuts in greenlighting it all. Worst/Best of all, the right choice is to create their own signature angle on this, not to just imitate what Marvel once did… because Marvel has already made those adjustments.

Would you pay to see a movie in which Wolverine, The Thing, Deadpool, Storm, Sabertooth, Mystique, and The Human Torch do a Magnificent Seven, directed by James Mangold? I sure would.

What would a romcom with Reed Richards courting Sue Storm look like?

What would an Alien movie look like with earth-bond superheroes, who can’t breathe in space, be, sharp claws and laser eyes on the Nostromo being a problem?

Obviously, there are thousands of variations. This is the experience of being a comic book fan. (At least it was for me.) Virtually anything was possible in any new run of books.

Hell, they could do their own Civil War and kill almost every Marvel character they control… then restart again. There is a small part of the ticket-buying world that cares about The Universe. Most of them want to see that really cool thing that the trailer showed them. And then the next one. Then the next one.

So… War for the Planet of the Apes did okay. The number wasn’t shocking in either direction. And now, we wait to see if international is stronger or weaker than the last time.

Spider-Man: Homecoming, off 61%… not so good. 50% is about the optimal number on a big Marvel opening. The film is still ahead of Wonder Woman‘s clip at 10 days, but that should flip (putting WW ahead permanently) this next week. Still, the celebration of one film’s gross and the diminishment of the other isn’t about the math. Both films are amongst 46 in film history to crack $200 million in 10 days or less. For the record, this “homecoming” is just over $60m ahead of Amazing Spidey 2 after 10 days. International, which was laid out rather oddly in comparison on ASM2, feels like it is running about the same, which is to say, pointed towards $500m+, but not $700m.

Some readers of this space seem to want a full paragraph Wonder Woman shout-out every week… a testimonial to the film’s success. Another great hold. And it should pass Guardians Vol. 2 for top summer slot next weekend. Wonder Woman has certainly become the best liked large-scale movie of this summer.

Also holding strong, on a whole different scale, is Baby Driver. Did anyone really expect Baby Driver, with no opening star, to be at $73 million domestic in 19 days? That’s $8 million behind Passengers, which had the Christmas week advantage. It’s $37 million behind Ghostbusters, which is Sony’s #1 domestic non-Spidey grosser of the last 2 years, but the two films at the 19-day mark are heading in opposite box office directions. Could Baby Driver pass that $128m domestic landmark? It would be a huge stretch, finding part of the audience that hasn’t landed yet.

Coming in a couple weeks, in a similar vein, Atomic Blonde is coming and big Universal has taken over much of the marketing/publicity of the film from Focus, apparently in the effort to mine the opportunity on the studio scale. It’s interesting to wonder whether Baby Driver‘s success increased fire under this title. The film doesn’t have the Rotten Tomato 100% advantage that Baby Driver had and which Sony worked hard (though they claim otherwise). But it’s one of those odd cases where 4 “rotten” reviews are killing their number (currently 78%). Variety reviewed out of SXSW and I would expect Universal to be pushing for a re-review by Debruge. The other three are Erik Childress (for The Playlist), William Bibbiani (for Crave Online), and Meredith Borders (for Birth.Death.Movies.). Nothing against those individuals, but the madness of the whole obsession with RT scores is exposed when you see the ability for a campaign to be derailed (U will work around it, obviously) by a few website freelancers. Big Comic-Con push this next weekend with a branded (funded?) EW Hall H appearance by Charlize.

Despicable Me 3 has “only” done $187 million in 17 days. That’s well off of DM2. No one is crying. That’s because of $431 million international. That’s #3 for the summer so far. No one is crying for the #1 international grosser of the summer to date either… Pirates 5… $750 million and counting. Boo hoo.

Wish Upon is actually Broad Green’s #3 opener ever. But that doesn’t make it good. The film is destined to gross its reported $12m production budget domestically. (Which means they get half back before paying for marketing.)

The Big Sick is another happy box office story. As noted yesterday, the expansion is a solid double, not a home run… mostly meaning that these numbers don’t scream that there is another gear up, just nice holds as it plays theatrically through August. Nothing at all to be unhappy about. The film is well on the way to being profitable for Amazon and the 30s or 40s are ahead.

Speaking of big per-screen, De Pere en Flic 2… ya feelin’ me? And in English, Lady Macbeth and Endless Poetry.

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67 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by War For The Box Office Klady”

  1. jspartisan says:

    Oh wow! We had a comic book movie, that had a comic book movie drop. Yes. It’s hard to not point and be shocked, but guess what? Not everything is Avengers, or Wonder Woman. Also, who cares about box office, when YOU HAVE A FEMALE DOCTOR! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

  2. Sideshow Bill says:

    Does WW have enough in the tank to get to $400 million? I think she does. I think Baby Driver gets to $90+, too. Then again I’m terrible at these things so I probably just jinxed both films.

  3. Dr Wally Rises says:

    I’d go further and say that BD has a legitimate crack at nine figures. Spidey to settle in the early 300’s.

  4. David Poland says:

    I don’t think there is much chance that Baby Driver doesn’t hit $100m domestic. The question is, how much more.

    No idea what JSP is on about with the female doctor….

  5. Ray Pride says:

    Who is Doctor Wooooooooo?

  6. Sideshow Bill says:

    George Romero RIP. What a huge loss for horror cinema. I am so sad right now.

  7. Geoffs says:

    Baby Driver is the kind of success that is Sony’s specialty – just like they did with Bad Teacher and This Is The End, they’ll find a way to drag it over $100 million domestic.

  8. AdamL says:

    Just listened to the FilmSpottimg podcast and they are both down on Baby Driver, especially Adam who basically hated it. The naysayers are correct; it’s a total mess of a movie with an appalling script in the second half. Everything from when Foxx shoots the guys at the (totally inexplicable) gun buying is unbelievably stupid.

  9. David Poland says:

    Some movies are a mess when you want them to be a mess.

  10. Movieman says:

    The only “problem” I had w/ “Baby Driver” was its occasional tendency to skew cutesy.
    But otherwise: Wright’s best since “Shaun of the Dead,” and my favorite studio release of 2017.

    “Would you pay to see a movie in which Wolverine, The Thing, Deadpool, Storm, Sabertooth, Mystique, and The Human Torch do a Magnificent Seven, directed by James Mangold?”

    I’m so out of the loop I immediately thought John Carpenter (or Howard Hawks) when I read, “The Thing.” Is this another Marvel comic book personage I’m totally oblivious to?
    Did Stan Lee shit these things out during a particularly resonant bout of diarrhea?

  11. Pete B says:

    Benjamin J. Grimm is the greatest character in all of Marvel Comics and he deserves respect.

    It’s not The Thing’s fault that all The Fantastic Four movies have been crap.

  12. Movieman says:

    Yes, they have, Pete. Total crap.
    And regrettably, I’ve seen them all, lol.

    Still can’t quite place “The Thing,” though.
    Was that the one played by the dude from “The Commish” and the 1989 Belushi biopic?

  13. Pete B says:

    Yep. The orange guy made of rocks.

  14. jspartisan says:

    Ben Grimm is fucking awesome. If you don’t know Ben Grimm, then you are fucking missing out. Feige, is hopefully, lying out of his teeth about the FF not coming to the MSCU. Seriously… Ben Grimm deserves some redemption.

    David, Jodie Whittaker… your 13th Doctor.

  15. Monco says:

    Superheros appearing in an Alien movie is insane but whatever I guess. Batman did fight the Predator once upon a time. I’m really starting to despise the comic bookification of Hollywood. Based on the spider-man references, in the not too distant future Marvel superheros will be making an appearance in a galaxy far, far away.

  16. Sideshow Bill says:

    Baby Driver was awesome. Just sayin’…

  17. palmtree says:

    Sideshow, I’ve been saying WW gets to 400 for a couple weeks now but each time people said it wasn’t happening. Yet it is comparing very well to the original Spidey which grossed 403 sooooo
    I’d be surprised if it didn’t.

  18. MarkVH says:

    “Some movies are a mess when you want them to be a mess.”

    This is the dumbest thing you’ve posted in a while, DP. Not everyone who’s down on Baby Driver has an agenda. I personally didn’t care for it, and am a huge fan of Wright, having either liked or loved everything he’s done so far. I think Adam’s right that the movie’s script falls flat, especially in the second half. I don’t hate it. But I do think it’s been hugely overpraised, and it’s my least favorite Wright movie by far. Not because I didn’t want to like it. Just because I didn’t like it.

  19. Stella's Boy says:

    Amen MarkVH. Save for Scott Pilgrim I also really like Wright. I certainly didn’t want Baby Driver to be a mess. It has been enormously overpraised and even many of its fans admit the second act is weak. I’d say that’s an understatement. Adam is right on.

  20. hcat says:

    Spider-Man should land in Sony’s top five and could top Skyfall which would make Sony’s top four films all webslinger. On the other side of the spectrum Transformers might not do Tomb Raider or Last Airbender numbers and Mummy can’t outgross Earthquake from 40 odd years ago. Given the indications of IP fatigue I would think that Sony is over the moon with how Homecoming is performing.

  21. Sideshow Bill says:

    I’ve been following the conversation Palmtree. I thought you were wrong too for a while. But it seems inevitable now. Kudos. And kudos to WW and all involved.

    I love Baby Driver. But some people don’t. I get that. I don’t get sand in my vag over people not liking stuff I like like I did when I was younger. The 2nd and third acts worked for me and i was able overlook or not care about some of the weaker elements because I was carried along by the style and rhythms and overall fantasy aspect of what was happening. Because it is totally a fantasy and a style piece above all else. I could pick it apart too. But I got on it’s wavelength and nothing took me out of it. If someone just didn’t like it I’m not going to tell them they’re wrong. I just try and explaining why I liked it and carry on.

    It’s not perfect. It’s not Scott Pilgrim. But it’s a day one Blu Ray buy for me.

  22. Stella's Boy says:

    Saw The Big Sick over the weekend. Enjoyed it a lot though it’s too long. Some spoilers follow. Obviously true stories get dramatized, but it’s interesting that in the film Kumail and Emily break up even though that never happened in real life. I know Kumail and Emily wrote the movie, but that feels like a studio mandate. Or maybe Apatow recommended it? I mean their story has plenty of drama on its own what with her near death and all. It’s a curious choice to also have them break up. I laughed a lot though, and it’s such a treat to see Holly Hunter in a good role. She is just wonderful and delightful.

    Also haven’t seen too many people here weigh in on War. Is it good? The best of the trilogy?

    I have never seen Doctor Who, but Jodie Whittaker is outstanding on Broadchurch. Good for her.

  23. MarkVH says:

    Bill, all valid points. The movie worked for you. Great! It didn’t work for me. But there’s nothing that burns my ass more than someone chalking a dissenting opinion up to too-high expectations or some kind of agenda (re: DP’s “some movies are a mess when you want them to be a mess).

    I listened to a podcast last week where two out of the three hosts liked BD, and when the third offered a counterpoint, another asked “oh, well, what were your EXPECTATIONS?” as if they genuinely couldn’t fathom the idea of their (majority) opinion being challenged.

    This drives me nuts. Who gives a shit what my expectations were? The movie is the movie. I didn’t think it was a very good one. Defend it if you like, but don’t chalk it up to what you feel like I “wanted” it to be. If you do, you’re no better than those assholes who read a Rotten Tomatoes score for a Marvel movie, look for the critics bringing the score down and comment on their reviews about their bias.

  24. MarkVH says:

    Also, I should add that the weird ganging up on BD dissenters I’ve noticed online reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where Elaine hates The English Patient. “Sex in a tub? THAT DOESN’T WORK!”

  25. Sideshow Bill says:

    MarkVH, I get it. Dave’s comment is puzzling. Not sure what he was trying to say. I know he liked the film a lot and I’m surprised we didn’t get a review. Should have written about BD rather than The House.

    Disagreement is fine and good. I have no qualms with anyone who didn’t like it. It doesn’t mean I “got it” and you didn’t. i don’t engage in that. We both reacted to what was made and those reactions were different.

    Debate is fine and I’ll engage here and there. I’m not afraid to defend my opinion. But I’ve also spent a lot of time on internet debate that’s gotten nasty and gotten nowhere. So I pick and choose my targets. I’ve reached the age where I’m happy to just agree to disagree rather than insist somebody is “wrong.” That doesn’t mean I won’t defend The Witch to leahnz but it also means I accept the fact that she did not like the ending, and she explained why.

  26. Sideshow Bill says:

    Besides, as I was discussing with someone at work yesterday, I adore John Carpenter’s Ghosts Of Mars. I really have no right to criticize anybody’s opinion of anything 😉

  27. MarkVH says:

    No worries, Bill. Wasn’t directing my comments at you, just using your comments as a jumping-off point to rant generally about something I’ve experienced.

    Also, leahnz doesn’t like The Witch? WTF is wrong with her? What was she expecting? (see what I did there)

  28. Stella's Boy says:

    And everyone here can relate to the experience of not liking something that everyone and their grandma passionately loved. Happens to all of us on an annual basis. Same with passionately loving something that everyone and their grandma hates. Like Ghosts of Mars (which is such goofy fun).

  29. CG says:

    “It’s a curious choice to also have them break up.”

    I think if they don’t break up, there’s no movie – it’s about him meeting his girlfriend’s parents in terrible circumstances, yes, but when she wakes up, the movie’s over. Breaking them up before the illness and coma gives the movie a messy, complicated third act and Zoe Kazan something to do beyond be adorable.

  30. Stella's Boy says:

    There’s not no movie, there’s a shorter movie, and that wouldn’t be so terrible. It would not be she wakes up and roll credits. Again, between his family issues and her health issues, this is a story with plenty of drama without adding the split.

  31. Sideshow Bill says:

    There was thread a few weeks ago where myself and someone else had a nice, constructive exchange with Leah about the ending The Witch. See doesn’t belief it’s ‘feminist” or “empowering,” and explained why very well. I get her point. I stop short of calling it feminist, even though I consider myself a fminist and not just because I’m wearing a Bikini Kill t-shirt right now. But I think Thomasin’s choice at the end was empowering. No need to rehash the debate even though I’m always up for discussion of what was my favorite movie of 2016. And I don’t think lean disliked the movie as a whole. She took issue with the ending. It was a good exchange, the reason I post here and few other places.

    I dragged my late wife to see Ghosts Of Mars in the theater. I don’t think she ever forgave me. then again she made me see Message In A Bottle so we were equal as far as I’m concerned.

  32. Bulldog68 says:

    The English Patient, The Horse Whisperer, Shakespeare In Love. I’m Elaine on all of those. Can’t stand them.

  33. Sideshow Bill says:

    I’m Elaine on Super Troopers, FWIW. I don’t get the love for that movie.

    As great as the new Blade Runner looks –and it looks great despite Jared Leto– I have hunch it’s going to under perform. I can see it approaching Arrival numbers but I don’t see it breaking out beyond that. I hope I’m wrong, and above that I just hope it’s good. I’m really looking forward to it. But I don’t think it’s going bust out.

    “Under perform” is a relative term. I don’t know how much it cost. I’ve seen the $200 million number thrown around. That’s a lot for what’s kind of a niche sequel to a cult sci-fi film. Here’s hoping I’m wrong, and I usually am…

  34. jspartisan says:

    I enjoyed Ghost of Mars. It was ridiculous, but enjoyable.

  35. Sideshow Bill says:

    I’m starting to think I might skip Apes this week. Maybe even wait until digital. Just not feeling it. I liked the first 2. I like Matt Reeves. I think he’ll make a great Batman movie. But I’m just can’t get that motivated to see it.

    Friday matinee of Dunkirk will be in order, though.

    I love Ghosts Of Mars. It’s goofy and violent and fun. Plus it has Clea DuVall, Pam Grier, Peter Jason and Joanna Cassidy. That’s a cast right there. The only Carpenter movie I outright dislike is Memoirs Of An Invisible Man. But it’s been a long, long time since I’ve seen that so who knows.

  36. YancySkancy says:

    FWIW, I hated Ghosts of Mars and liked Memoirs of an Invisible Man. I really liked The Witch. I really liked Shakespeare in Love (I thought people only hated it because it beat Saving Private Ryan for the Oscar, not because they actually thought it was bad).

  37. Pete B says:

    If you liked Dawn, then you’ll like War as it’s basically the continuation of that movie. It’s a decent flick, my issues were that it goes too long and I could have done without Bad Ape.

    Of the 3, I think Rise is my fave as I loved the Godfather-like ascension of Caesar and the little winks at the audience regarding the 1968 original. I know other folks hated Malfoy saying “it’s a madhouse, a madhouse” and “take your stinking paws off me you damn dirty ape”, but it was catnip to me.

  38. leahnz says:

    heeey now

    (speaking of wonky finales, weirdly i just watched ‘ghosts of mars’ the other night for the first time in donkey’s ages and it’s a bit of a hoot right up until the last scenes when they’re back at the base and it has this super flat, abrupt ending with henstridge and the cube with this low key quip about fighting on and then bloop, that’s it. wtf just the oddest thing)

    also weird how i’ve not seen a single dude comment on the astounding fact that any female representation in the world of apes and humans in WftPotA is completely erased and pretty much nil (and the only female character of any note is a mute, brain damaged plot/male character motivating device), not a single female character speaks, one (if i remember right) does a brief sign language, it’s fucking appalling.
    and considering even the OG ’68 PotA had female characters of note (who acutally – gasp – spoke and did stuff) it’s a disgrace. and anyone who thinks this is ‘ok’ and not a problem needs to get their head out of their ass

  39. jspartisan says:

    You know what else is fucking appalling? THEY FUCKING BASICALLY MADE THE SAME MOVIE TWICE! It’s totally First Class and Days of Future Past. The bigger the scope, doesn’t exactly change the fact that it is indeed, a slightly bigger version of it’s predecessor. Seriously though. Matt Reeves can’t put compelling female characters in this shit? What the fuck year is it?

  40. Hcat says:

    I am completely Elaine on saving Private Ryan. Absolutely hated it on first viewing and was sighing ‘oh fuck off’ to the screen when I watched it. To be fair I saw Thin Red Line first and found Speilbetgs take to be a Boy’s Life cliche compared to it but ugh the love tossed Ryan’s way. Totally on board with Shakespeare winning ( though would have preferred Malick).

    Braveheart was another, Mel loses his wife and opens a can of whoop ass, mmmm feels like I saw that before, sure this time is a historical context and we get to spend forty minutes watching him get disembowelled ( oh I wonder if he will condemn the rebellion?), but it really only felt like an exercise for him to yell and kill in new creative ways.

  41. Hcat says:

    And I am sorta with Bill on Apes, third entries always feel like rehashes, greatest hits of what has come before. Love the original series and am beyond impressed with what they have done so far but am not chomping at the bit to experience the third.

  42. Pete B says:

    I guess I missed the time travel, Sentinels, and Peter Dinklage in First Class. Yet somehow it still managed to be 100x better.

  43. Sideshow Bill says:

    Enjoying the Ghosts Of Mars love. Leah is right about the ending. It’s a flat “fuck you.” Hilarious in it’s own way, maybe intentional, but also could just be pure laziness. Considering all Carpenter does these days is smoke pot and play video games (when he’s not touring) maybe he was just like “fuck this garbage. I’m done.” His surliness has always been one of my favorite things.

    Apes: The more people say it’s just an extension of the 2nd film the less I want to go. A friend of mine described it as “Spartacus, but with more apes.” i want to see it. I liked the first 2. Didn’t love them, and I like Matt Reeves. the lack of female characters is puzzling, too. It’s not like it’s The Thing where there’s no room for a woman or 2. I will watch it but it’s most likely going to be on digital in, I’m guessing, October.

    My movie plans then are Dunkirk Friday afternoon –unless I get called into work–, the Free Fire and Wilson that evening. That sounds doable.

    One topic that comes up here a lot is trailers we see too much. I’ve got one: Kingsman 2. Mind you it looks fun as hell and I’ll see it but I feel like it’s been attached to every fucking movie I’ve seen this year. Ugh.

  44. Ray Pride says:

    I remember interviewing Carpenter on a press day for Ghosts of Mars. He was resplendently slouchy in a pink track suit snowflecked with cigarette ash and reeking of weed. Surly was an understatement. I brought up Bowling Green, Kentucky, and then we were good.

  45. Night Owl says:

    “Matt Reeves can’t put compelling female characters in this shit? What the fuck year is it?”

    Funny as much as I did enjoy most of Baby Driver I was asking myself the same question about Edgar Wright.

    So what’s the tracking on Valarian? I’m sensing an impending disaster (sadly).

  46. Pete B says:

    As others have brought up on the blog, I think this Spider-man was hamstrung by the Garfield debacles. The wife got off early from work, so we caught an IMAX showing of Homecoming before Dunkirk takes over the screen. Only 4 folks in the theater – all adults. That’s a crying shame! Hopefully this will be a stepping stone like Batman Begins and lead to a much bigger audience for the next Holland outing.

  47. David Poland says:

    I agree with you, Leah. Thought I had written something about that. I was chewing on that cast list and was wondering where the women who were listed existed in the film. Interesting that they actually changed Cornelias from the first film to the last 2 (stuntwoman to Judy Greer).

  48. David Poland says:

    MarkVH… my comment wasn’t an agenda comment. I am fine with people disliking Baby Driver or any other movie I like.

    But when people start calling a movie “a fucking mess,” I am genuinely curious about what they are talking about when it so clearly is not a mess.

    Taste is taste. Cool.

    But I don’t see any argument that Edgar Wright didn’t have control of the film and made the film he had in his mind (as much as is possible) and if you don’t like it, great… but it’s not some incomprehensible car wreck (pun only intended after I realized it was one).

    If someone says that Scott Pilgrim is a mess, I can see coming to that idea. I really like that film. But it gets rather disjointed… so yeah. Works for me, but I hear ya.

    Transformers is a fucking mess. Series of 90 second segments that barely cut together.

    That’s all.

  49. Stella's Boy says:

    Good point Night Owl. The female characters are paper thin in Baby Driver. And Baby Driver gets very disjointed in the last 20 minutes, after Hamm becomes The Terminator. It has what feels like four endings and for some reason Hamm survives shootouts and falls that no one could ever survive. There’s definitely a rational argument to be made that Baby Driver becomes a mess by the end.

  50. Pete B says:

    Are folks actually expecting realism in a movie about an idiot savant getaway driver who choreographs his escapes to 70s tunes?

  51. Stella's Boy says:

    No Pete but for me it completely goes off the deep end in the last 20 minutes and becomes an entirely different movie. There’s an abrupt change and it totally loses me in the home stretch. I don’t think that’s an irrational or unfair opinion.

  52. Sideshow Bill says:

    Interesting debate on Baby Driver. Where it for me it was fantasy all the way so I didn’t think it went off the rails. I thought the whole thing was pitched at the same level. Others obviously did not. When I rewatch it I’ll do so with that in mind.

  53. Triple Option says:

    Re: Baby Driver – I expected more from the driving and the heists. Suspension of disbelief wasn’t ever an issue. I went in there wanting to see the 10,000,000-to-one shot. The more improbable the occurrence, the better the film.

  54. Doug R says:

    Yeah, Apes is a bit of a sausage fest and Maurice is played by woman. However Maurice does actually talk at one important point-I think it’s supposed to be harder for orangutans. I noticed at least one of the human soldiers was a woman, but I didn’t notice her speaking. So seen at least, but not heard. Other than that, great picture.

  55. jspartisan says:

    Alright. I have seen Spider-man, and jesus fucking christ was that a poorly marketed movie. Tony Stark is hardly in it, and when he is in it? He’s fucking wonderful. It’s just an all-around great movie, that changes the timeline in order to tell TV/Netflix, “Bye, Felicia.” Seriously though, Sony burnt the property to such an extent, that a film that should be making much more bank. Has to deal with meddling fucking returns. Here’s to the Batman Begins’ effect happening once again.

    Oh yeah… the Apes movies can bite a dick, but the lack of female characters in the finale? Shame. Baby Driver is from Edgar Wright, who was pushed aside from Ant-man, because of female character weirdness. If you can’t give a shit about female characters in 2017… thank you, fuck you, bye.

  56. amblinman says:

    “It’s just an all-around great movie, that changes the timeline in order to tell TV/Netflix, “Bye, Felicia.”


    As for the rest regarding SM:HC: Right!?

  57. amblinman says:

    Oh, and:

    War for Apes’ Planet: (MAJOR SPOILER) I thought it was fine, and was enjoying…well, as much as you can enjoy this…the internment camp sequence because I was expecting a badass comeuppance from the apes against the soldiers. Instead they just, like, escape. Das it.

    Avalanche was stupid too.

    Sidenote: The credits start to roll and OF FUCKING COURSE most of the morons in the theater stay glued to their seats waiting for some fucking post credits sequence. I hated Marvel with a passion at that moment. You could fucking sit through Schindler’s List now and people will hang out until the bitter end just in case Amon Goeth’s dead skeleton fist rises out of the grave to signal the next shitty movie you’re going to sit through.

  58. Bulldog68 says:

    So who’s the smarty pants that decided to open Dunkirk and Valerian on the same weekend?

  59. jspartisan says:

    Man, I never ever get those audiences. Last night, most of the audience got up and left before the post credit sequence. Why anyone, watching a Apes on HORSES movie, would expect a post credit scene is beyond me. However, sitting through the credits, is how you pay respect to the thousands who make a movie. That’s how I view it anyway.

    That aside, here’s why moving everything ahead to 2020, was a genius stroke move. Every MSCU movie in PHASE 2, happened, relatively, in real time. All of them, started on or around, the day of their release, so what you were watching was HAPPENING NOW. This would include the Marvel TV properties, who only went against this strategy, with the last season of Daredevil.

    Now, with Spidey, everything in the MSCU skips ahead to 2020, but the TV shows are still in that HAPPENING NOW strategy. This of course means, that Marvel Studios gave themselves a reason, for the Defenders not being in Infinity War. Seeing as the MSCU is three years in the future, and who knows what the fuck happens to the TV characters in that three year time frame.

    What it also does, is make Civil War a better movie. If you go into Civil War thinking, that everything is happening in 2016. It’s sorta off. You have the Sokovia Accords happening IMMEDIATELY, when that sort of legislation takes years to ratify… sort of like the Paris Climate Accords. You have Caps’ Avenger team, working as a solid fucking crew for four years, and this would explain how this decision is a lot tougher than it ought to be, for his team. They are a crew, that’s been kicking it, doing missions, for FOUR YEARS. All of the shit in Civil War is heightened now, at least for me, by the specter of all of that time these characters had together.

    Steve though, really kept the Bucky shit a secret, FOR FIVE FUCKING YEARS! FIVE YEARS, he didn’t tell Tony what happened. It also makes Zemo, a more realistic-like villain, because it took him years to put his plan into motion. All of this happens, by just skipping the story ahead to 2020.

    I mean, we should have seen it coming in Guardians, because 2 was set in 2014. It has to take Groot some time to grow from a baby, to a teenage tree in the post credit sequence. All of of this adds up to the MSCU probably using this time to give Carol Danvers years to become CAPTAIN MARVEL, the same with Wasp and Ant-man working together, and maybe Hawkeye got to stay on the farm for four years, before Cap called in a favor. It also means, that Loki has been hiding as Odin, for a long ass fucking time. It’s just adds a lot of layers to the fucking MSCU that wouldn’t be there, if everything happened in real time like Phase 2.

  60. amblinman says:

    Wow…you really do study this shit intimately (not a criticism, I’ve watched every single episode of The Sopranos probably a minimum of 10 times). I don’t think it enhances my take on most of their stuff but it’s impressive to implement that kind of game plan all the same. On that note, I wonder who is going to be the next big bad they work towards once Thanos is gone. I think an Avengers: Secret Wars movie(s) would be kind of awesome. (80’s Beyonder version, please).

  61. jspartisan says:

    Wow. Okay. How do you sit through the Sopranos that many times? This isn’t a criticism either, but that show is so uneven at points, that I’d imagine some seasons are hard to rewatch like… season five of West Wing. A couple of golden moments, but a slog to get through. I’ve sat through West Wing six times, so everybody’s got their something.

    Here’s the thing: I think the game plan sort of skipped Doc Strange. There’s the weirdness with the phone call about Rhodey, that is a nice easter egg, but is out of fucking place in the NEW timeline. Doc Strange, from the start of his movie, to the scene with Thor, has been through some shit. Which means Doc Strange, had to have taken place in 2016, but the post credit scene takes place in 2020. This makes me believe, that all of this was very fluid during Strange, but solidified with Spidey.

    And yes, I ALWAYS wanted a film series like this to happen, so the way the storylines weave between one another, is one of my favorite parts of this series.

  62. amblinman says:

    “Wow. Okay. How do you sit through the Sopranos that many times? This isn’t a criticism either, but that show is so uneven at points, that I’d imagine some seasons are hard to rewatch like… season five of West Wing. A couple of golden moments, but a slog to get through. I’ve sat through West Wing six times, so everybody’s got their something.”

    The key with Sopranos is if you’re watching it for mob shit, you’re not going to enjoy it. It was never a series about the mafia, that’s just the hook Chase used to sell what he really wanted to talk about. So the seasons that initially felt sloggy opened up greatly upon repeat viewings when you let that go. For instance, I consider “Whitecaps, Season 4’s finale, to be the best season finale of the series and one of the very best episodes, period. Most of it revolves around a fight between Tony and Carmela.

    I could go on and on about Sopranos but I’m self-aware enough to know no one gives a shit so I try not to inflict my markdom on anyone.

  63. jspartisan says:

    That’s interesting, and when do you ever get go on about the Sopranos? I watched every season, and never thought about it as a mob drama either. I just enjoyed Gandolfini, and still miss the guy. The entire cast, just worked together so damn well. I will state this, if you haven’t seen Chase’s rock n roll movie. You should. It’s fanfuckingtastic.

  64. amblinman says:

    I’ve seen Chase’s rock n roll movie. And it is indeed fanfuckingtastic.

    When Sopranos was airing, it was a weekly “who’s getting whacked next-fest” among reviewers and a large swath of watchers.

  65. jspartisan says:

    Yeah. Social media wasn’t as big, so it’s one of those big 21st century shows… that millennials just missed. It’s weird as fuck, and I hated the whole WHACK-FEST shit. The ending is fucking clear as day, but no… we have to make it about Tony and his entire family getting killed. Oy to the vey.

  66. cadavra says:

    Bulldog, I think the better question would be, “So who’s the smarty pants that decided to open Valerian on the same weekend as Comic-Con?”

  67. Movieman says:

    “Not Fade Away” is a fantastic movie that, tragically, NOBODY saw.
    Glad to know there are a few people out there who love it as much as I do.
    Hope Chase gets to direct another film some day.
    I still think he would’ve nailed “Jersey Boys.”

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