Cocktails and Movies Weekend Review: America, The Movie Goers!

BY TIM BARLEY AND MIKE REYES

This Just In! 5 Day Weekends Make You LOTS of $$$!!!

Despicable Me 2 Minions

Here are the Minions buying their own island with all the $$ they made.

Welcome back from your 5-day weekend! Somehow, between the BBQ’s, the fireworks and spending all day at the beach, some of you found some time to take in a movie. Most likely, that movie was Despicable Me 2, but there HAD to be at least nine others to round out our Top 10 this week. Why don’t we take a look at what movie you took in to get away from the patriotic hordes this past 4th of July weekend. It’s time for Cocktails and Movies Weekend Review.

Here’s who made what:

Box Office Results 7/5 – 7/7 (courtesy of Box Office Mojo):

1. Despicable Me 2: Actual: $82.5 mil. (5-day: $142m)/ Prediction: $64 mil.

2. The Lone Ranger: Actual: $29.4 mil. / Prediction: $45 mil.

3. The Heat: $25 mil.

4. Monsters University: Actual: $19.6 mil. / Prediction: $36 mil.

5. World War Z: $18.2 mil.

6. White House Down: $13.5 mil.

7. Man of Steel: $11.4 mil.

8. Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain: $10.1 mil.

9. This Is The End: $5.8 mil.

10. Now You See Me: $2.8 mil

Money, Money, Minions…

Sometimes there’s a weekend that catches you off guard. Oh sure, you can peg the winner no problem, but predicting the trouncing that the rest of the field’s going to get… that’s the part that gets a bit vexing. Most of the pundits in this Box Office game had Despicable Me 2 pegged at around $110 million or so this weekend, and lo and behold it has accrued $142.1 million in just five days alone. Talk about a blockbuster hit! Throw in the overseas grosses, and you’ve got a film that’s almost made four times its budget. Four times in the black… in week one! Unfortunately, this film will probably slip to the second or their spot with two new films being released. (And one of them supposedly on track to be a supposed summer bomb.) Speaking of summer bombs, it’s time to start the post-mortem on a film that never stood a ghost of a chance. At least, that’s what you would have heard from the audiences that didn’t show up to see it last week.

The Lone(y) Ranger

Yes, The Lone Ranger has become the new John Carter, as it’s underperformed its way into the Punchline City. It was clear as early as Wednesday morning that Disney’s latest live action gamble wasn’t going to pay off as they’d hoped, as practically no one went to see early screenings on Tuesday. Perhaps it was the fact that The Lone Ranger isn’t really a big seller with modern audiences, or perhaps it’s the fact that the film looks like a Western following the Pirates formula. Whatever the cause you choose, this has become a rather large turkey on the Disney backlot. With money spilling into their coiffers from Iron Man 3 and Monsters University (which is still collecting in Fourth place), they probably won’t feel it that much. Still, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Gore Verbinski were punished the same way Andrew Stanton was. So expect him to sign on for Pirates of the Carribean: Finding Will Turner real soon!

the heat cocktails and movies

Chicks rule!

The real surprise winner of this weekend was The Heat, as it climbed over Monsters to secure a nice third place slot in its second weekend. With its budget recouped, it’s all gravy from this point out for the buddy cop flick that’s proving R-Rated Buddy Cop Comedies with Female Leads are apparently not as impossible to make money off of as Hollywood thinks. Which means it’s time for clones and sequels to start marching in through the door. Doubly so for World War Z, as its fifth place finish pretty much proves its commercial viability, as well as gives Paramount an excuse to force Brad Pitt to keep making ’em and for us to keep watching ’em.

The Rest

White House Down, on the other hand, has the distinct honor of not being the latest colossal bomb in Hollywood, despite the fact that its international clout is weaker than its domestic clout. Expect a quick funeral for this, and a possible budget reshuffle for Independence Day Forever. Similarly, Man of Steel continues its rather quick descent down the charts, also causing some future plans involving planned sequels to come into question. Though at least MoS had a kick-ass opening weekend, which allowed it to slack a little in future weekends and still make its bank.

Finally, we end this week with three rather dark horse successes, two of which are from the same studio. This Is The End is managing to hold on much longer than anticipated (especially for a film that opened against Man of Steel), and ditto for Now You See Me (which was counterprogrammed against Fast and Furious 6 AND The Hangover Part III. The success of these two flicks signifies the correct usage of counter programming, especially in the case of the latter film. Holding your own against the Fast franchise is pretty impressive, but to make The Hangover juggernaut look bad is something else.

With Warm Bodies, Now You See Me, and even the 8th place opening of Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain, The Lionsgate/Summit family has proven that not only was their merger a smart business move, but that they’re more than the studios that brought us Saw and Twilight, two franchises that seem to have equal footing in the eyes of moviegoers today. Particularly in the case of Kevin Hart’s stand up concert flick, the studio has show themselves a firm believer in smaller scale, not as well known properties. These are the studio’s bread and butter, as they seem to have a firm grip on making fetch happen for smaller films people would probably have never heard of coming from another studio. Fingers crossed that their next big ticket release, Red 2, enjoys similar success. (Especially considering it’s the next Cocktails and Movies West gathering, and the last film to enjoy that distinction was a rather big success.)

The pins are reset and the bowling balls are ready for another roll, as we get set to see giant robots fight Adam Sandler and his best friends. (Our hearts are with the Robots, but we’re going to have to really look long and hard into the matter before we put money on either party.) Cocktails and Movies is ready to hit it again, and we’re glad you’ll be along for the ride with us! Next rounds on us, seeing as it’s Monday and all.

Gotta take the sting off somehow.