FIRE! That’s the theme of this week’s post. And not just because the revival of Twin Peaks has me thinking of the under-rated spin-off movie. No, there’s fire all around us. Last weekend Fast 7 (or 8, or 21, I’ve lost count) only mustered a reasonable flame here in the US, but worldwide it’s a veritable bonfire of success, making over half a billion in a single weekend. Roll on the sequels. As for this weekend, the competition doesn’t so much heat up as gently burns…
You’re playing with fire when you title a movie called Unforgettable(Warner Bros). It also doesn’t help that I’ve read the synopsis a few times and still can’t recall what it’s about. Those Warner folks must have failed their Irony 101 class. It’s apparently about a jealous ex-wife who goes after her husband’s new love. Some call it an erotic thriller, so it seems like an attempt to recreate the moderate success of films like The Perfect Guy, No Good Deed, etc. But I don’t buy it. Katherine Heigl has proven that she has very limited appeal (vehicles like The Big Wedding and One for the Money underperformed). And the plot feels very dated, if not a little sexist in its use of the Hysterical Ex trope. All this film has going for it is the lack of competition, particularly for a female audience, but that won’t be enough. It will fail to open over $10m, and finish with less than $30m, which isn’t a great return for the $6 or $7 it’ll cost you in BO. In Ult the best you’ll get are 4 T5 points, 1 PTA, and an IMDB score in the low 6’s. That’s not terrible for $7 but it could get you less, so…. [drummer raises his sticks in the air with anticipation]… FORGET this one [BA-DUM TISSHHHH].
You’re also playing with fire by calling your film Born in China(Buena Vista), but for a very different reason. Political tensions between East and West are ramping up again, and President Dump spent his campaign turning the populace against China (only to eat chocolate cake with them as he bombed Syria – but that’s for a very different forum). The point being, that while this Disney Nature doc about panda bears will be both cute and informative, its title might turn certain audiences off. A different name would have made all the difference. And so I suspect this will end up on the lower side of these nature docs Which is a shame, as I F**king love pandas (case in point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tJYzbJCIR_U). It should open at about $4m, and close with about $15m. You might see a T5 point due to poor competition, and maybe even a PTA point, and a score in the 7s. Not great for BO but worth a shot in Ult if you don’t have a good limited release to fill a $4 gap.
And speaking of playing with fire, here’s a film that plays with fire. Free Fire(A24). And boy is there lots of fire, and not just from guns. But there are no spoilers here. UK outsider Ben Wheatley has made his most commercial film, a 1970s Boston set action pic where an IRA arms deal goes wrong, with the two factions spending the movie taking verbal and lead shots at each other as they try to escape. It’s a great premise, matched with a fantastic cast, featuring the likes of Cillian Murphy, Brie Larson, Sharlto Copely, Armie Hammer, etc. Reviews are generally positive, and A24 are releasing hot off their Oscar victory. What’s not to love? Well here in the UK the film under-performed, with word of mouth not as hot as some reviews, and Wheatley fans being a tad disappointed. This may be less of an issue in the US, but don’t expect it to be a massive breakout. Depending on theatre count, this could open to about $4m and make $12m in total, although if it opens in less than 1500 theatres then expect the film to miss out on the Top 5. That’ll mean at most 1 T5, 1PTA point, and an IMDB in the low 7s. Probably not worth it in BO (where it ranges from $4 to $7), and you might get more sure-fire (heh) bets with prestige limited releases.
Two other wide releases are coming out this weekend, The Promise and Phoenix Forgotten, but they’re not in the game and wouldn’t be worth picking anyway. There’s also a rumour that Jeremiah Tower is out this weekend instead of last, but I’ve also read it has been pushed to July, so can’t help you there.
My predictions for the weekend
1. The Fate of the Furious - $40m 2. The Boss Baby - $10m 3. Unforgettable - $9m 4. Beauty and the Beast - $8m 5. Free Fire/Born in China - $4m
PTA: Fast 8, Their Finest, Lost City of Z, Boss Baby, Unforgettable
Next week, Shryke sets his cross-hairs on three wide releases: The Circle, Sleight, and How to be Your Latin Lover. But like the rest of the world he’ll really be thinking about Guardians of the Galaxy 2.
numbersix wrote: Next week, Shryke sets his cross-hairs on three wide releases: The Circle, Sleight, and How to be Your Latin Lover. But like the rest of the world he’ll really be thinking about Guardians of the Galaxy 2.
Yeah, but I'm satisfied scrounging up the leftovers that no one else seems to want to write about.
Just a note: Pawns (The Wielders of Arantha Book 1) debuts on Amazon tomorrow, so be sure to download a copy for your Kindle, Nook or e-reader app!
Unforgettable - 2,417 The Promise - 2,251 Phoenix Forgotten - 1,588 Born in China - 1,508 Free Fire - 1,070
Lost City of Z - 614
The Circle - 2,800+ How to be a Latin Lover - 1,000
James Woods turned 70 on 4/18 Maria Bello turned 50 on 4/18 George Takei turned 80 on 4/20 Iggy Pop turns 70 on 4/21 Jack Nicholson turns 80 on 4/22 John Cena turns 40 on 4/23 Kal Penn turns 40 on 4/23
The Fate of the Furious, $11.2M The Boss Baby, $3.2M Beauty and the Beast, $2.6M Unforgettable, $1.7M Born in China, $1.6M The Promise, $1.4M Going in Style, $1.4M Gifted, $1.4M Smurfs: The Lost Village, $1.1M
Top 10: 5 points - The Fate of the Furious, $38.7M 4 points - The Boss Baby, $12.7M 3 points - Beauty and the Beast, $10.0M 2 points - Born in China, $5.1M 1 point - Going in Style, $5.0M Smurfs: The Lost Village, $4.8M Unforgettable, $4.8M Gifted, $4.5M The Promise, $4.1M The Lost City of Z, $2.1M Phoenix Forgotten, $2.0M
17. Free Fire, $1.0M
PTA: 5 points - Jeremiah Tower 4 points - The Fate of the Furious 3 points - A Quiet Passion 2 points - The Lost City of Z 1 point - The Boss Baby
Top 10: 5 points - The Fate of the Furious, $38.4M 4 points - The Boss Baby, $12.7M 3 points - Beauty and the Beast, $9.7M 2 points - Going in Style, $4.91M 1 point - Smurfs: The Lost Village, $4.88M Born in China, $4.790M Unforgettable, $4.785M Gifted, $4.6M The Promise, $4.1M The Lost City of Z, $2.1M Phoenix Forgotten, $1.8M
17. Free Fire, $1.0M
PTA: 5 points - Jeremiah Tower, $10,134 4 points - The Fate of the Furious, $8,872 3 points - A Quiet Passion, $5,421 2 points - The Lost City of Z, $3,455 1 point - The Boss Baby, $3,439