After last week’s pitiable box office, it looked like things couldn’t get much lower. Thankfully, at least to the nation’s exhibitors, this weekend saw a sharp swing upwards. Apparently, people love seeing Johnny Depp voice an existentially conflicted lizard.
Unsurprisingly, ‘Rango‘ was the weekend’s #1 movie. While initial reports from Friday indicated a final tally closer to the $40 million mark, it still took in a respectable $37 million. Quite frankly, I was a little curious as to how this would actually do, audience-wise. The screening I went to was partially full of actual, flesh-and-blood children. From where I was sitting at least, it didn’t seem like they were too enthused by the film. From my vantage point, many of them felt it was too scary, too loud, and (critically) too long at nearly 110 minutes.
I guess I was wrong. People turned out in droves. That’s miraculous considering that this weekend wasn’t a holiday or anything. Oh, and the movie is really, really ridiculously great, too. It’s always nice when families respond to quality entertainment, instead of, say, ‘Despicable Me‘.
At #2 was ‘The Adjustment Bureau‘. Despite its marketing blitz, this movie was expected to take in less than its respectable $21 million haul. I was really charmed by this heady sci-fi romance, and thought that the leads (Matt Damon and Emily Blunt) made a convincing on-screen couple. Common wisdom was that it was too cerebral (or weird) to connect with audiences, but that simply wasn’t the case. It wasn’t a hugely expensive movie, either. It was co-funded by a variety of entities, so it should make a tidy sum and hopefully convince the studios that it’s okay to make films that aren’t aimed solely at teenage boys.
‘Beastly‘, which I hadn’t heard a peep about (or seen), also debuted this weekend. It placed at #3 with $9.7 million. That’s something, especially since the film (a modern take on ‘Beauty and the Beast’) looks like the silliest thing ever.
The only other new film was the ’80s nostalgia piece ‘Take Me Home Tonight‘, which debuted outside of the Top 10, way down at #11 with a meager $3.4 million. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I figured it would do better than this. Clearly, my prognostication skills aren’t what they used to be. If you have any interest in seeing this in the theater, please do so now. I’m sure that, with the onslaught of big budget pop fare invading the multiplexes in the oncoming weeks, it’ll be gone… just like the ’80s themselves.
Oh, and ‘Gnomeo & Juliet‘ still continues to make loads of cash. It came in at #5 with another $7.2 million. Meanwhile, I continue to scratch my head, wondering how in the world this is possible.
The Top 10:
01 ‘Rango’ (Paramount) – $37 million
02 ‘The Adjustment Bureau’ (Universal) – $21 million
03 ‘Beastly’ (CBS Films/Sony) – $9.7 million
04 ‘Hall Pass’ (Warner Bros) – $9 million
05 ‘Gnomeo & Juliet’ (Disney) – $7.2 million
06 ‘Unknown’ (Warner Bros) – $6.6 million
07 ‘Just Go With It’ (Sony) – $6.3 million
08 ‘The King’s Speech’ (Weinstein Co) – $6.1 million
09 ‘I Am Number Four’ (Disney/DreamWorks) – $5.7 million
10 ‘Justin Bieber: Never Say Never’ (Paramount) – $4.2 million