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SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/8

PostPosted: November 6th, 2019, 5:36 am
by numbersix
Halloween weekend traditionally delivers some shocks, usually in the form of throwaway horror flicks. Last weekend it came in the form of a beloved franchise, directed by a man responsible for the most successful X-Men film in the franchise, approved by the most successful director of all time, starring its long-missed star, and it could barely beat the one with a bad Game of Thrones actress (we’ll get to her in a bit) and a plot that made no sense whatsoever. Terminator: Dark Fate was a bloodbath, but financially rather than in content. RIP. The good surprise came from abolitionist biopic Harriet, which may have fought its way to some awards attention. Will this week, with 4 wide releases clawing at each other, deliver the good scares or the bad ones?




Looks like the time-change skipped an entire week this time, with Doctor Sleep (Warner Bros) coming out on the traditionally terrifying weekend AFTER Halloween. I guess it is scary, if you think about how much chocolate you’ve probably taken off the kids and chomped on. This horror is a sequel to the iconic Kubrick chiller The Shining, and avoids the expected outrage by also being an adaptation of Stephen King’s novel of the same name. Here, little Danny Torrence is all grown up, subduing his psychic abilities through alcoholism, until another “talented” girl is threatened by a group of dangerous folk who dine on those who shine. Mike Flanagan (Oculus, Gerald’s Game, and about 5 more films since you started reading this article) writes and directs, with Ewan McGregor playing the lead, and Rebecca Fergusson as the hat-donning leader of the gang.

King adaptations are being flung into the green light since the surprise success of It: Chapter One and, to a lesser extent, its sequel. And The Shining must be one of the most beloved box office bombs of all time, making the sequel curious to even the haters. Reviews have been good (but not great), but WOM seems positive, if Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score and IMDB are indicators. This film should at least play better than the disappointing Pet Sematary, but probably not as much as It: Chapter Two. In the UK, for example, the film only opened in 5th place. A US opening in the high 20s seems about right, with a cume in the 70s. An IMDB score in the 7s is expected, along with 8 T5 points and 4 PTA points. For $17 or $20 in BO, it doesn’t quite feel worth it, unless you’re expecting an upset and an opening in the high 30s. However, it’s definitely tempting in Ultimate, ($17-19) as it delivers on all categories.




20 years ago, Midway (Lionsgate) would have been a must-have in this game. It’s a classic-style war film, set around the Battle of Midway, a decisive bout between the US and the Japanese during the Pacific War. And directed by the man behind Stargate and Independence Day. Sadly, someone in Lionsgate dusted this off and dropped it into a crowded weekend in a crowded season. It should still deliver some old-school (they’re even too old for skool) thrills and open in the mid-teens but flounder in the mid 40s, at best. There’s a small chance this may surprise, but I’m not convinced. That’s just not worth it in either league. Midway? More like Mid-level.




A more exciting option is Last Christmas, courtesy of Universal. It’s a rom com directed by Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, The Heat, A Simple Favour), and stars Emilia Clarke as a disgruntled Londoner who finds love and, presumably, George Michael music during the festive season. Now, while Ms Clarke is somewhat limited when she’s not a haughty dragon moma with no sense of character logic, she does have fans and has plenty of natural charm, which should work wonders for an American attempt at Love-Actually-meets-The-Holiday. Considering the early release date, expect a modest opening but a good hold as the Xmas lurks up on us. It may perform under Midway this weekend but expect it to earn more in the long run. I expect 5-6 T5 points, 1-2 PTA points, a cume of $60m or so, and a 6 score in IMDB. So save yourself some tears and give your something specials to this.




Finally, there’s Playing With Fire (Paramount), an inappropriately-timed family film. It deals with a group of fire-fighters who rescue and have to deal with a bunch on unruly kids. Many a hair will be hilariously singed, and many an extinguisher will be set off. John Cena, Keegan-Michael Key, and John Leguizamo star. This flick may have filled some family gap elsewhere, but are they really going to give a damn about this with Frozen 2 looming over it? Plus, nobody in California is going to go near this film. Expect a sub 10m opening and it will fizzle out below 30m. That’s not worth it in BO, and in Ultimate you’re going to get very little spark. Quench it.




On the limited front there’s only one contender, Honey Boy (Amazon), but what a contender. Based on Shia LaBeouf’s own childhood relationship with his father, this is a tender drama about a young actor in his formative years and during his later failures as he battles with his vices. Alma Harel directs her debut fiction feature, and it not only received rave reviews, but picked up a jury award at Sundance. With October’s prestige pics fading away, this will pick up plenty of PTA points (7-10), making it a sweet, sweet pick in Ultimate, where it’s 4 bucks. However, considering Amazon’s release strategies don’t expect this to cross the $5m mark.


Predictions for the weekend

1. Doctor Sleep- $28m
2. Midway - $17m
3. Last Christmas - $15m
4. Terminator: Dark Fate - $14m
5. Playing with Fire - $10m

PTA: Honey Boy, Doctor Sleep, Jojo Rabbit, Midway, Harriet

Next week catch Tranny’s take on another Charlie’s Angels reboot, another racing car drama, another Ian-McKellan-is-a-murderous-octogenarian flick, another weird-genre-bending-A24 indie, and The Warrior Queen of Jhansi.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 6th, 2019, 8:03 pm
by Shrykespeare
On the fence about Doctor Sleep. The Shining was SO. LONG. AGO. I hope the movie at least explains the plot for the benefit of the uneducated.



Celebrity birthdays:

Matthew McConaughey turned 50 on 11/4
Dania Ramirez turns 40 on 11/8
Ellen Pompeo turns 50 on 11/10
Kiernan Shipka turns 20 on 11/10
Taron Egerton turns 30 on 11/10

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 6th, 2019, 8:10 pm
by Buscemi2
The Shining did recently return to some theatres in a new 4K restoration. Sadly, I didn't go due to prior engagements.

And from what I've read, Doctor Sleep is a thematically different film, which suggests you probably don't need to watch Jack go crazy before watching Obi-Wan save a kid from Crazy Hat Lady.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 7th, 2019, 4:27 am
by numbersix
Doctor Sleep is different in style and tone, and almost genre. It's less psychological horror and more a thriller. It's not even remotely scary or weird, which I guess is good because it's not trying to be The Shining (despite having the same characters), but its own thing.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 7th, 2019, 5:47 pm
by Walleye413
Interesting. This actually makes me want to see it more too.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 7th, 2019, 6:29 pm
by JohnErle
I haven't felt a proper fanboy rage in a while, so I might have to see Doctor Sleep just to get my blood boiling.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 8th, 2019, 6:38 pm
by Buscemi2
Based on early numbers, it looks like King is out and jingoism is back in.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 9th, 2019, 8:51 pm
by Shrykespeare
Friday Estimates

Midway, $6.3M
Doctor Sleep, $5.2M
last Christmas, $4.1M
Playing With Fire, $3.5M
Terminator: Dark Fate, $2.8M
Joker, $2.5M
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, $2.0M
Zombieland: Double Tap, $1.2M
Jojo Rabbit, $1.1M




Weekend Projections:

Midway, $18M
Doctor Sleep, $13.5M
Last Christmas, $11.9M
Playing With Fire, $11.3M
Terminator: Dark Fate, $10M
Joker, $9M
Maleficent, $8.5M
Harriet, $7.2M
Zombieland 2, $4.3M
Addams Family, $4.1M

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 9th, 2019, 9:20 pm
by Walleye413
Wow when's the last time we had a good hit? Joker?

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 9th, 2019, 10:06 pm
by Buscemi2
Yeah, probably Joker. Though The Addams Family has been a surprise (I credit MGM's marketing campaign for this one doing well).

Related to marketing campaigns, I feel Doctor Sleep's killed it. They shouldn't have given away all of the Overlook Hotel/revisiting the first film elements in the trailers.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 10th, 2019, 8:06 am
by numbersix
Marketing over here avoided the Overlook hotel, and it still underperformed.

I wonder if it's the King brand. Pet semetary wasn't like, and It 2 was considered to be inferior to the first. And too long. This may factor into audiences not wanting antoher king adaptation.

Plus, while The Shining may be a beloved film of the cine-literate, it wasn't successful when it came out, and may be more niche than we think. Add to that the Kubrick fans who may be peeved to see a sequel

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 10th, 2019, 11:22 am
by Screen203
I think the problem with Doctor Sleep was that it's really hard to get older adults into theaters for horror films - look at Crimson Peak a few years back for example.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 10th, 2019, 12:42 pm
by Shrykespeare
Weekend Estimates

Top 10:
5 points - Midway, $17.5M
4 points - Doctor Sleep, $14.1M
3 points - Playing with Fire, $12.8M
2 points - last Christmas, $11.6M
1 point - Terminator: Dark Fate, $10.8M
Joker, $9.2M
Harriet, $7.2m
Zombieland: Double Tap, $4.3M
Countdown, $2.8M
Parasite, $2.6M


PTA:
Too early to tell.

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 10th, 2019, 12:50 pm
by numbersix
Honey Boy earned something like 300k in 4 theatres, so that's at the top. Based on The Numbers estimates then it's Midway, Jojo, Parasite, and Playing with Fire. None for Dr Sleep :/

Re: SIX TIPS, OR HOW TO PLEASE YOUR SLATE – THE FILMS OF 11/

PostPosted: November 11th, 2019, 6:38 pm
by Shrykespeare
Weekend Actuals

Top 10:
5 points - Midway, $17.9M (5)
4 points - Doctor Sleep, $14.1M (4)
3 points - Playing With Fire, $12.7M (3)
2 points - Last Christmas, $11.4M (2)
1 point - Terminator: Dark Fate, $9.2M (6)


PTA:
5 points - Honey Boy, $75,266 (5)
4 points - Midway, $5,520 (4)
3 points - Jojo Rabbit, $4,928 (18)
2 points - Parasite, $4,298 (16)
1 point - Playing With Fire, $4,072 (1)