Unless your movie was named 'Jersey Boys,' this was a pretty excellent weekend at the box office for all parties involved. A new film opened big in the number one spot, last week's champions held on strong, and others continued to perform well further down the charts. But boy, it really kinda' sucks to be 'Jersey Boys.'
Everyone expected '22 Jump Street' and 'How to Train Your Dragon 2' to open well, but you won't find many people who expected the raunchy R-rated comedy to open bigger than the family friendly animated adventure. But here we are! Both films opened well, but '22 Jump Street,' like the first film, is has taken a hammer to all expectations.
If the main goal of 'Divergent' was to snag a large portion of the audience for 'The Hunger Games,' it looks like it succeeded. Although it didn't reach the absurd heights of Katniss' two movies, Shailene Woodley's dystopian adventure effortlessly nabbed the number one spot and, unless something bad happens next week, announced the arrival of a new big franchise.
If the goal for 'Need For Speed' was to replicate the success of the 'Fast and Furious' films, then the film's opening weekend is not promising. Opening in third place, the video game adaptation was overtaken by two of last week's releases, making this potential franchise D.O.A.
After seven years of waiting, no one knew if a sequel to '300' would do the business of its predecessor. And now we have a definitive answer: yes. '300: Rise of an Empire' effortlessly took the number one spot at the box office, proving that America still loves shirtless Greeks murdering each other in slow motion.
For the third weekend in a row, 'The LEGO Movie' effortlessly held onto the number one spot at the box office, cutting down all of the newbies that showed up to dethrone it. Don't cry to hard for '3 Days to Kill,' but feel free to wince a'plenty for 'Pompeii.'
When 'RoboCop' got pushed from an August 2013 release date to February 2014, everyone assumed it would open stronger when far away from the busy summer months. If this is the better of the two options, then we can't even imagine how poorly it would have opened in the warmer months. The remake of the 1987 classic is definitely not a disaster, but it most certainly underperformed.
And here we are: five weeks into the new year and we already have our first major blockbuster of 2014. Early estimates had 'The LEGO Movie' opening big, but the animated adventure shattered all expectations this weekend, with universally positive reviews and word of mouth sending the film to a massive opening.
When Jonah Hill graced the 'SNL' stage last night, he wasn't just a very funny comic actor -- he was a two-time Oscar nominated thespian with Very Important Things to say. The only problem is that no one cared about Hill. They only cared about his 'The Wolf of Wall Street' co-star Leonardo DiCaprio and all of the cast members strategically placed in the audience made sure to let him know this.
If you think this opening monologue set-up is just an excuse to get Mr. DiCaprio himself to show up for a brief but unforgettable appearance ... you're right.
If there's one thing that we're reminded of a few times a year here at the Weekend Box Office Report, it's that films targeted at black audiences are always ignored by many mainstream movie websites ... until they open huge at the box office. 'The Best Man Holiday' is the latest film to prove that there's an entire group of moviegoers who aren't being given the films they obviously want to see, and hopefully its success will spur Hollywood into action, allowing for the production of more movies with black casts and filmmakers. Maybe. This is Hollywood, after all.
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