No Country for Old Men
The week after Thanksgiving is usually a weekend of few releases. There have been some sneak-ins that have done okay (like Behind Enemy Lines), but it wasn’t until Ocean’s 11 claimed the first week of December that that became a hot spot, while the second week became Lord of the Rings week for three years, and between the two Christmas time is no longer just the playground of Oscar hopefuls. That said, the weekend after turkey week tends to be dead in terms of the new.
Even with nothing much against it, Awake did not buck this trend. For a poorly marketed film starring Darth Vader and Hot Piece of Ass With no Acting Talent (she had her name legally changed, I respect that.) along with Jessica Alba and Terrence Howard – and I kid Sigourney Weaver. Seriously, in an act off between Alba and Christensen, who breaks that wet paper bag first? Do they say to Alba “Okay, get mad, mad like someone doesn’t seat you right away at The Ivy. Mad like when you found out Jessica Simpson just started fucking Tony Romo.” I wonder. Actually, I just wondered. Does Terrence Howard just bite his tongue in scenes, think: “I’ll be in a good movie again soon, so just take the check. Take the check. This is in no way worse than Glitter, and I got to tear that shit up. Here I’m getting paid to not work all that hard. And at least I don’t have to be naked with a group of dudes like in Get Rich or Die Trying.”
Otherwise, I went high on pretty much everything. I thought Enchanted had enough good word of mouth not to drop and give me fifty, but I was wrongish. Still, it dropped only 50%, which is something of a victory. This Christmas also took the fifty plunge, as did Beowulf, which will be quietly underperforming for the rest of the year. Sort of a sad end to Dreamworks’s excellent year-long run of the Paramount show. Bet they wished they attached an Indy trailer to it now, instead of Cloverfield. If Hitman was cheapish (not sheepish, which the rumors turned out to not be true about, that is, that it was edited to a PG-13) it should be nearing some form of profitability shortly, though as I intimated before, it’ll top out around 40. Guns probably still work internationally, so even the lack of a name player ( I believe in Russia the poster says “Starring the Bad guy from Die Hard 4.0”) shouldn’t be a problem.
Fred Claus got to Sixty? Well, maybe there is a Christmas spirit after all. Maybe it will play into the actual Christmas. I bet Warner Brothers will make it so and sacrifice any August Rushes along the way. No Country is still playing strongly, got to over Twenty, and should have good long shelf life if it keeps picking up acclaim and – eventually – awards.
The Mist is out of the top ten. Sadness. Gangster and Bee Movie are shuffling off after solid runs, perhaps the former will get some re-releasing if it gets nominations. It might.
Word around the campfire is that The Golden Compass only sold out half their sneaks, and the word of mouth is mixed to bad. I was going to get into this Friday (and probably still will), but you don’t sneak tentpoles. Or you normally don’t. That they did suggests both panic and confusion, and if they thought that it would help the word is it didn’t. I was talking about this with Jeremy last night, and the sad truth of it is the film may not crack $100 domestic. Or at least the sad truth for New Line. But we’ll know more in a couple of days.
Behind every great book adaptation is a forgettable first try. — By Ryan Covey