“Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” under performed while managing to take the top spot in its opening frame. Sony’s “Zombieland: Double Tap” opened just behind “Joker” with a slightly higher average take. “Joker” fell into second place as it runs on Fox’s “Deadpool 2” R-rated comic book inspired gross.
In its first frame, Disney’s sequel to the 2014 smash “Maleficent” took $36.9 million off 3790 screens for an average of $9,749. The TMR Recommended “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” features Angelina Jolie returning as the titular character with Elle Fanning and Michelle Pfeiffer in strong supporting roles, Joachim Rønning’s film felt cobbled together, unable to support three, strong characters. The “Maleficent” sequel was tracking between $40 – $45m.
Warners/BRON Creative’s “Joker,” in its third frame, was set to surpass “Deadpool 2” as the top grossing R – rated film based on a comic book character today. It fell an estimated 48% from last weekend shedding 284 screens with a $7,152 average for a domestic gross of $247.3m.
Opening ahead of estimates, Ruben Fleischer’s “Zombieland: Double Tap” proved that ten years between films was not too long. Opening on 3468 screens with an estimated $26.8 million take, the TMR Recommended film had a slightly higher average than “Joker” with fewer theaters.
The TMR Recommended “The Addams Family” gained 95 screens in its second frame to take $16.3 million this past weekend. The animated film from United Artists Releasing fell 46%, grossing $57 million in just two weeks, demonstrating the film’s seasonality, catching families on fall break along with strong word-of-mouth.
Rounding out the Top 5 wide releases is Ang Lee’s “Gemini Man.” The Paramount release saw a 60% decline in box office receipts as the sky high technology driven film falls back to earth, taking in $8.3 million for a two week $36.4 million gross. Since it did not shed any screens, the assumption is that the premiums coming from the High Frame Rate (HFR), Dolby and IMAX screenings is helping to keep the box office take from falling even faster as news came out today that it is a box office failure.
Rounding out the top 10, Universal’s animated “Abominable” continued its strong run with $3.5 million for a $53.9m gross in its fourth frame. It shed the most screens as it winds down its run. Focus Features’ “Downton Abbey” took seventh in its fifth frame, becoming that studio’s top grossing film, besting Ang Lee’s “Brokeback Mountain” with a $3.1m weekend and a $88.7m domestic gross.
The Judy Garland biopic “Judy” took in $2.1m in its fourth frame. With the strong buzz about Renée Zellwegger’s Oscar-worthy performance, the Roadside Attractions/LD Entertainment release might see a late awards season push. The TMR Highly Recommended “Hustlers” landed in ninth place in its sixth frame with $2m and a $102m domestic gross, shedding 782 screens this past weekend. Rounding out the top 10 is Warners’ “It Chapter Two” with $1.4m on 1528 screens.
In Limited Release
Fox’s “Ad Astra” took the top limited release spot with $813,202 in its fifth frame, while the TMR Highly Recommended “The Peanut Butter Falcon” from Roadside Attractions is still pushing hard in its eleventh frame on 248 screens. The TMR Not Recommended “Lucy in the Sky” had a dismal $240 average as it added screens in its third frame, with a meager $269,491 gross after three weeks.
Neon’s “Parasite” added 30 screens this weekend, its second frame for a $37,616 average. It opens in Phoenix this Friday. Robert Egger’s “The Lighthouse,” which has divided the art house scene held strong on to its eight locations, taking second place. The A24 release had a $53,475 average with a $427,797 domestic gross. Reviews for both films
Pedro Almódovar’s TMR Highly Recommended witty and razor sharp “Pain and Glory” added 44 screens this past weekend. The Sony Pictures Classic release is in its third frame with a $1.1 million domestic gross.
Taika Waititi’s “Jojo Rabbit” opened with five locations for a $349,555 weekend in its first frame. The Fox Searchlight Oscar hopeful expands to Phoenix this Friday.
The “Jay & Silent Bob Reboot” Fathom event took $1.1 million. Just like “Zombieland: Double Tap,” this reboot proves that there is still an appetite for these types of films.
Look for our reviews for Robert Egger’s “The Lighthouse,” Bong Joon-ho‘s “Parasite,” the historical drama “The Current War: Director’s Cut” from 101 Studios, Dan Krauss’s “The Kill Team” from A24 and Taika Waititi‘s “Jojo Rabbit” and Netflix’s “Dolemite Is My Name.”
Ben Cahlamer, a member of GALECA, is a Phoenix-based film critic with reviews running weekly on www.phoenixfilmfestival.com and www.thecinemafiles.com. You can hear him on the air every Thursday at 4:40 pm on 88.7 The Pulse.