Film Weekend Per Total
1 New Moon $42,500,000 (-70.2%) $10,515 $230,674,000
2 The Blind Side $40,125,000 (+17.6%) $12,779 $100,250,000
3 2012 $18,000,000 (-31.8%) $5,226 $138,776,000
4 Old Dogs $16,846,000 $4,919 $24,085,000
5 A Christmas Carol $16,003,000 (+30.4%) $5,311 $105,373,000
6 Ninja Assassin $13,135,000 $5,248 $21,010,000
7 Planet 51 $10,200,000 (-17.0%) $3,361 $28,487,000
8 Precious $7,090,000 (-34.8%) $10,694 $32,461,000
9 The Fantastic Mr. Fox $7,020,000 (+3,349.4%) $3,453 $10,108,000
10 The Men Who Stare at Goats $1,533,000 (-45.8%) $1,370 $30,552,000

This just in: the vague smell of cheese.

Doesn’t Old Dogs feel like a film that could have been made in 1996? Robin Williams doing horrible schtick, John Travolta mugging. This could have been made a decade ago, and it would be virtually the same movie. Is it fair to say audiences didn’t really respond when you have a $24 Million dollar total already? Well, it is in the sense that the picture will be lucky to double its five day gross, and should top out around $50 at the most, unless somehow it picks up a following. People who see this don’t understand movies. They like going to the theater, comforted by jokes that don’t challenge them, and want from cinema what most people want out of comfort food. You could argue that the Hollywood system was built on films like this, but when you watch classic Hollywood cinema, you experience characters who the audience can fall into. That’s just not the case here.

That said, why didn’t more people see The Fantastic Mr. Fox? The film hit over 2,000 screens, and now it’s at $10 Million, but perhaps people thought it was more art film than kids film. That happens. Anderson’s most successful film to date is The Royal Tennenbaums, which had an all-star cast and played long. This has gone too wide to truly pick up, though my guess is that it won’t drop as hard as some other pictures. Then again, it’s hard to kill yourself jumping out of a second story window (aim for the head). If the film is lucky, it could end up around $30 Million, but mostly cause the theater’s a little on the weak side until Mr. Cameron shows up. The week after Thanksgiving used to be considered a terrible slot, though it’s done some business, and the first week of December has been Warner’s stomping grounds for a while (Ocean’s, I Am Legend, etc.). This year it looks pretty terrible as Warners has held off until Christmas for their A picture (Holmes).

And though Ninja Assassin crossed the five day, $20 Million dollar mark, which six films did this weekend – which is sort of impressive – hopefully the film was cheap, cause it’s probably not going to double the five day. But either people want to see a movie called Ninja Assassin or they don’t, and it’s been almost twenty-five years since cinema has been on fire for ninja films. I went in for a Graduate program in Ninja-ing, or at least I thought I did, and let me tell you, I’m never getting that money or that innocence back. Worst hundred bucks I have ever spent, and I bought a lot of shitty Solo project albums. All they wanted to teach me was about kegels. I don’t see how that’s going to make me invisible. I still have a number of Shurikens, though.  

Oh all right, y’all read Devin’s piece on Breaking Dawn? Sounds awesome. Whole lotta nasty. I watched New Moon this weekend, but only the puppet version. The film dropped 70%, and it’s possible it will drop another 70% next weekend, which means that a film that opened to $140 Million may have trouble getting to double its opening weekend. The question is if Summit cares about getting the film to $300 Million. It’s possible by the end of next weekend it will be around $260 Million (which may be being generous), the question is if it’s got enough life in it to keep going. Then again, if this is a woman’s picture, they may keep going back every week, or two weeks later, etc. I’ve put a lot of thought into this. I’m team Alice. I want her inside of me.

The Blind Side, let me say this now, if you’re part of Team Sandra Bullock, starting tomorrow, get on the fucking ball, and get her an academy award nomination. This is a film that came out of nowhere, and has hit hard, people love it, and Warners should be capitalizing on this something fierce. Bullock’s on the comeback train and had 2.5 hit films this year, plus people sort of love her. And now The Blind Side (which I predicted would have a less than 20% drop off) managed to go up in its box office take by almost 20% and cross the $100 Million dollar mark. In ten days. Will this film get to $200 Million? At this point it would have to drop like its hot for that to happen, so $200 is happening. Audiences love sports pictures, I’ll tell you what, when they’re done right.

2012 is an international picture, and it has nearly clocked $350 Million from places outside the U.S. Which brings its total to near $500 Million. The domestic results may be a little lacking in the scheme of things, and it may not make it to $200 domestic, that really doesn’t matter. The film worked. Whereas I haven’t seen a lot of international numbers for A Christmas Carol, and though it crossed the hundred million dollar mark this weekend, it’s got two weekends left, and it’s not getting to $150 Million. With some Disney people out, this may just be blamed on the transition period or
something. This may also allow The Princess and the Frog to stink up the place.

Planet 51 was a Sony pickup from all accounts, so, there’s that, but it’s got two weeks until the big Disney pic. Precious is considered an Oscar front runner, but the problem it’s going to run into is if it’s box office dies between now and the end of the year. If the film can’t get a bump from the Oscar noms and such, it may feel old. And it’s going to fall off a bit from here on out, which means unless Oscar kicks it up again, i may not get to $100. Juno played to an audience, but this pregnant teenage girl gets raped by her HIV-infected father (and then consumes a bucket of chicken). The picture may be the Oscar front runner, but it’s so black that I could see the Academy not falling for it completely (old white people). Then again, I’ve also heard that Up in the Air isn’t as strong as some would suggest. Which means with hard work, you could see those two film fall behind a picture. Eastwood’s got his gold, so I don’t see him as much of a challenger. Avatar could be something, could be nothing. The Lovely Bones doesn’t strike me as picking up consensus so far. Interesting end of the year, which is why I think Sandra Bullock could take it to gold.