Weekend Movies: Mad Mix

Not that I think ‘Avengers’ won’t take the top spot at the box office for the third consecutive week, but it’s certainly nice to have some worthwhile new movies hit the big screen this weekend.

It’s been a long time coming, but the new entry to the ‘Mad Max’ series is finally here. After 30 years, creator George Miller returns to the franchise with ‘Mad Max: Fury Road‘. Tom Hardy takes over the title role that landed Mel Gibson on the map. In an attempt to escape being held captive by a merciless community of savages within a dusty post-apocalyptic world, Max finds himself with a group of escaped sex- and baby-making slaves (and Charlize Theron and Nicholas Hoult) with hordes of baddies hot on their trail in what turns out to be, essentially, a two-hour, eye-popping car chase. With raving critics’ reviews and explosive crowd-pleasing word-of-mouth, there’s absolutely no reason to not catch it opening weekend. The bigger the screen, the louder the theater and the more dimensions, the better.

Opening against ‘Mad Max’ is the comedy sequel ‘Pitch Perfect 2‘. Anna Kendrick, Fat Amy and their singing band of misfits are back at it. This round follows the model of modern dance flicks by raising the stakes and placing the characters in a competitive international sing-off. Elizabeth Banks takes on the directing duties with this installment and Hailee Steinfeld joins the cast.

In limited release, Ethan Hawke re-teams with ‘Gattaca’ writer/director Andrew Niccol in ‘Good Kill‘. Hawke stars as a drone pilot who’s worn down by the things his job requires him to do. The moral conflict affects his home life and triggers a needed change. Niccol hasn’t had the best track record (while ‘Gattaca’ and ‘The Truman Show’ were both home runs, ‘In Time’ and ‘Lord of War’ both missed the mark), but following a modern warfare theme and coming out hot on the success of ‘American Sniper’, the potentially controversial tale might find an audience.

Roadside Attractions is giving a small no-name, faith-based flick a 276-screen debut. ‘Where Hope Grows‘ is a sports drama about a former baseball pro whose career was brought down by his vices. When he makes friends with a local boy who has Down’s Syndrome, he finds a new start.


  1. Chris B

    I’m wondering if there might be a slim chance of Mad Max coming at number one this weekend or at least close to an avengers-like haul. All the critical raves seem to have boosted its momentum hugely this week. Even people I know who normally wouldn’t give a shit about this type of movie seem excited about all the buzz. It will be interesting to see what happens…

    • Something tells me Pitch Perfect 2 will beat out Rockatansky. I want to be wrong in the worst way, but every time I’m strongly rooting for a flick, it rarely goes how I want. Dredd, Pacific Rim 🙁
      Optimistically, I’m thinking 30 to 40 million, but if the movie gods are with this one, then maybe 60 to 80 million. That’s a big IF. Like I said, I hope I’m waaay off and it does amazing box office numbers. Anyone know what the studios are predicting for this one?

      • Chris B

        It will be interesting to see how Max finishes the weekend. Pretty much every one I know has had their mind blown after seeing it and is encouraging as many people as they can to check it out. Word of mouth could be the difference in this case.

        • William Henley

          Right, but its competing for same audience as Avengers and Fast 7 (although I would rekon many people have already seen those movies). I would expect Mad Max to do better next weekend than this weekend based on positive word of mouth – I literally had no interest in seeing it until I read reviews. Also, bad weather in the south and midwest probably kept a lot of potential movie-goers at home.

          Pitch Perfect had the advantage of appealing to a different demographic than Max / Avengers / Fast, so I am not surprised to see, based on Friday’s numbers, that it is in the lead. Thursday, I heard many people talking about how excited they were that it was opening. I hadn’t even heard of it, I assumed it was another television singing show.

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