Monday, September 26, 2016

Box Office

From ew, Denzel Washington and Antoine Fuqua are enjoying one of the biggest opening weekends of their respective careers as The Magnificent Seven, based on Akira Kurosawa’s 1954 classic Seven Samurai, opens to a solid estimated $35 million in North America.

Opening on 3,674 screens, The Magnificent Seven earned an A- grade from audiences on CinemaScore, a decent rating for the fall blockbuster, which looks to steadily decrease atop strong legs on its way to recouping a lofty $90 million budget by the end of its run. The film notches Washington’s third largest opening since the beginning of his film career in 1981, unadjusted for inflation, while it tallies the biggest weekend debut for any title in Fuqua’s filmography.

he pair previously conjured box office magic together on 2014’s The Equalizer ($101.5 million) and 2001’s Training Day ($76.6 million), the latter of which won Washington his second Academy Award.

Debuting at No. 2 with a soft $21.8 million is Warner Bros. Animation’sStorks, a family comedy featuring the voices of Andy Samberg, Jennifer Aniston, and Ty Burrell. Though exit polling indicated general audience satisfaction (it currently has an A- grade on CinemaScore), the film stumbled in its efforts to replicate the success of the studio’sThe LEGO Movie, which made over $257 million domestically in 2014. Still, animated movies tend to sprout longer legs than their live-action counterparts, and Storks was produced on a manageable budget in the $70 million range. With an extra $18.3 million coming from around 33 international territories this weekend, Storks should clear its production costs by the middle of October.

Falling to No. 3 after leading the pack for two weeks is Clint Eastwood’s Sully, which stars Tom Hanks as Chesley Sullenberger, the US Airways pilot who successfully performed an emergency landing of an Airbus on the Hudson River in 2009. The Warner Bros. film continues to flex its muscles with older audiences, shedding a mere 36 percent from week two to week three for an estimated finish of $13.8 million. Its domestic total now stands at $92.4 million ($126 million internationally), and it should clear the $100 million mark in the U.S. and Canada in a week’s time.

Rounding out the top five are Bridget Jones’s Baby, the Renee Zellweger-starring threequel released 12 years after the Bridget Jonesseries’ previous installment, which falls 47 percent to an estimated $4.5 million, and Oliver Stone’s Snowden biopic, which loses 48 percent of its debut audience for a sophomore weekend gross of $4.1 million.

In limited release, Disney’s chess drama Queen of Katwe, which wasone of the runner-ups for the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival’s People’s Choice Award, premieres to a muted $305,000 on 52 screens with a per-theater average of $5,865. The Mira Nair-directed film stars Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo in a fact-based tale of Phiona Mutesi, a Ugandan chess prodigy who became a Woman Candidate Master following stellar showings at the World Chess Olympiad competition.

Year-to-date box office is up around 5.1 percent from the same frame last year. Check out the full Sept. 23-25 weekend box office chart below.

1. The Magnificent Seven - $35 million
2. Storks - $21.8 million
3. Sully - $13.8 million
4. Bridget Jones’s Baby - $4.5 million
5. Snowden - $4.1 million
6. Blair Witch - $4 million
7. Don’t Breathe - $3.8 million
8. Suicide Squad - $3.1 million
9. When the Bough Breaks - $2.5 million
10. Kubo and the Two Strings - $1.1 million

Friday, September 23, 2016

The Simpsons: FXX to air all 600 episodes in 13-day marathon

From ew, Get ready for something more gluttonous than Homer Simpson in eating 64 slices of American cheese: FXX is airing all 600 episodes ofThe Simpsons in a row.

The marathon will take place over 13 days, from noon ET on Nov. 24, a.k.a. Thanksgiving Day, through Tuesday, Dec. 6. (The show’s 600th episode, which is Treehouse of Horror XXVII, airs Oct. 19 on mother network Fox.)

FXX is billing this binge as the longest-running marathon in TV history. The previous record holder also involves the animated Fox comedy. FXX held a 12-day, 552-episode event in 2014, which helped put the young network on the ratings map.

Monty Python founding member Terry Jones diagnosed with dementia

From salon, Terry Jones, founding member of beloved English comedy troupe Monty Python has been diagnosed with dementia, the BBC reports.

Along with Terry Gilliam, Jones directed one of the troupe’s most iconic films, “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” He also directed “Life of Brian” and “The Meaning of Life.”

A spokesman for Jones told The Guardian that “Terry has been diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia, a variant of frontotemporal dementia.”

“This illness affects his ability to communicate and he is no longer able to give interviews,” the spokesman continued. “Terry is proud and honored to be recognized in this way and is looking forward to the celebrations.”

Kathryn Smith, director of operations at Alzheimer’s Society, expressed her condolences, saying “[w]e are deeply sorry to hear about Terry Jones’s diagnosis of dementia and are thinking of Terry and his family during this time.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Watch a Cheesy Campus Tour Video for Charles Xavier’s School for the Gifted

‘Sadako vs. Kayako’ (The Ring Vs. The Grudge) Review: A Goofy, Ghostly Grudge Match

Much like a certain hockey masked mama’s boy and the most famous resident of Elm Street, the former titans of J-horror have teamed up for a comeback with what can only be described as a ghostly grudge match (apologies for the pun). In case you don’t know these greasy haired spirits by name, Sadako is that VHS vengeance ghost from The Ring while Kayako is the crackly voiced crawler from The Grudge. Given that both Japanese horror franchises were initially rooted in quietly creepy atmospherics over bloody spectacle, it might seem odd to imagine the two icons fighting. Thankfully the folks who made Sadako Vs. Kayako are very much aware of the absurdity of the concept and have made a delightful romp pitched halfway between parody and homage, dripping with fan service.

The flick kicks off with two college students attending a lecture about urban legends where the geeky professor (Masahiro Komoto) gushes about how desperately he wants to get his hands on that Ringu VHS tape. Weird coincidence: one of those students (Aimi Satsukawa) needs to transfer her parents’ VHS tape to DVD and gets her friend (Mizuki Yamamoto) to help. They buy a dusty old VCR and wouldn’t ya know it? The deadly tape is inside, prompting an all new haunting from Sadako. Meanwhile there’s a high school girl (Tina Tamashiro) nearby who recently moved to a new house next to a creepy abandoned mansion. She finds herself inexplicably drawn to it and those pesky Grudge ghosts happen to be inside. The two parallel haunting tales come together when the college girls hire a wacky exorcist (Masanobu Ando) with a psychic blind kiddie sidekick (Maiko Kikuchi) and he decides that the only way to stop Sadako is to face her off against another cursed ghost with long stringy hair.

As you may have gathered, the whole thing is pretty damn ridiculous. While these franchises scared the pants off of international audiences in the early 2000s with their slow burn creep out atmospherics and delayed gratification scare tactics, the folks behind Sadako Vs. Kayako realize that the patience of contemporary audiences has changed. No one wants to wait around in a mashup horror franchise romp with ‘Vs’ in the title. So director Koji Shiraishi (who made the genuinely terrifying Noroi many moons ago) wastes no time getting down to ghostly business and does it all with his tongue pressed firmly into his cheek. This is more of a haunted house entertainment factory than anything that could produce nightmares.

Shiraishi is so determined to entertain that he even shifts Sadako’s death deadline forward so that anyone who views the tape actually dies in two days rather than seven. Rarely a few minutes pass between hauntings from one of the beloved spectres. All the classic scare tactics from The Ring and The Grudge franchises make an appearance. Jump scares and body counts pile up quickly and Shiraishi is certainly talented enough to prod viewers in all the ways they’ll crave when showing up to the theater. Some of the hauntings and deaths are a bit more graphic than the subtle series are known for, but always in playfully cartoonish ways. The movie is designed for maximum entertainment value, not shock value.

The most pleasant surprise in Sadako Vs. Kayako is the sense of humor. Shiraishi has a great deal of fun poking at the holes in each movie’s silliest extremes, horror fandom, and genre clich├ęs in general. Yet the humor never gets so slapsticky or self-conscious as to undermine the scares. It’s all in the name of making this movie a relentless entertainment factory. In particular, Masanobu Ando’s eccentric exorcist and his psychic blind kiddie sidekick Maiko Kikuchi are such an amusing pair that they could well end up chasing other popular Japanese horror franchise staples in further sequels and spin offs. It’s not impossible, after all who would have ever guess this movie would get made?

Admittedly, some might find the titular battle a bit of a let down as it’s hardly the epic n’ endless fight of Freddy Vs. Jason. The movie is more The Ring + The Grudge With A Little Fight, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had. This isn’t going to provoke sleepless nights like the original movies did years ago nor is it likely going to revive either series. It’s a product made purely for fans and one executed with such craft, care, talent, and humor by folks who clearly love these movies that it should please the target audience. If the title intrigues you, give it a go. It’s not like anyone inclined to watch the ghost from The Ring fight the ghosts from The Grudge will be expecting a masterpiece. This is all about giddy ghostly entertainment and on a purely crowd-pleasing level, it delivers the goods. [via collider]

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Mad Max: Fury Road Without Special Effects

Thought you geeks would enjoy this.

Monday, September 12, 2016

'Godzilla Resurgence' trailer

Box Office

From boxofficemojo, It has been seven years since Tom Hanks starred in a live action film that opened atop the weekend box office, but Sully changes all that as the true life feature delivered one of the five best September openings of all-time. Finishing in second was another one of the weekend's new wide releases, Sony and Screen Gems' When the Bough Breaks, while Lionsgate's The Wild Life and Relativity's The Disappointments Room failed to make much of an impression. Overall, this weekend's top twelve delivered nearly $86 million, a small uptick from the same weekend last year with nearly 60% of the top twelve cumulative gross coming from the top two new releases.

Directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Tom Hanks as Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger, Sully opened at #1 with an estimated $35.5 million, the fifth largest September opening of all-time, largest September opening for Warner Bros. by nearly $12 million (The Town / $23.8m) and largest post-Labor Day opening of all-time. Add to that, this is the first time since 2009's Angels & Demons that Tom Hanks has starred in a live-action film that opened #1 at the box office. The film, which was the first Hollywood feature film to ever be shot 100% with IMAX cameras, was also the largest September IMAX opening for a wide release, pulling in an estimated $4 million from 375 IMAX locations.

Sully received an "A" CinemaScore from opening day audiences which were split 44% male vs. 56% female and 80% of the overall audience was over the age of 35. It will be interesting to see where the film goes from here as a domestic haul around $105-110 million would typically be the safest bet for an opening of this sort, but given this is a well-received, adult-targeted feature, it could climb to $130+ million and not be the least bit surprising.

Internationally, Sully debuted in 39 international markets and brought in an estimated $9.5 million. This includes $2.3 million from Australia, $925,000 in Russia and $929,000 from the United Arab Emirates. It will open in Japan in two weeks on September 24.

Finishing in second is Screen Gems' When the Bough Breaks with an estimated $15 million for its opening weekend. This is a pretty steep drop compared to previous Screen Gems releases targeting the same audience, such as last year's The Perfect Guy which opened with $25.8 and No Good Deed, which opened one year earlier with $24.2 million. The fact the budget was only $10 million helps the overall picture, but given Boughreceived a 0% RottenTomatoes score and a "B" CinemaScore you can look for this one to fall sharply next weekend by 60% or more.

Next is Lionsgate's P&A pickup, the animated feature The Wild Life, which delivered an estimated $3.4 million, just managing to sneak into the top five. The film fell a bit short of its $5 million expectations and won't likely be hanging around the weekend top ten for much longer. The film scored a "B-" CinemaScore.

The last of the weekend's new wide releases brings us to Relativity's The Disappointments Room which delivered on its title and failed to find a spot within the top 15, serving up an estimated $1.4 million. This is an even worse per theater average ($901 PTA from 1,554 theaters) than last weekend's flop, Morgan. The film received a "D" CinemaScore from opening day audiences and, like When the Bough Breaks, currently holds a 0% on RottenTomatoes.

Coming off Labor Day weekend it was to be expected that weekend drops would be a little heftier than normal, but a lot of films held on quite nicely beginning with the recent horror hit Don't Breathe, which dropped only 48.1% and brought in an estimated $8.2 million. The film is now up to $66.8 million domestically.

Finishing behind Don't Breathe in fourth position is WB's Suicide Squad, which brought in an estimated $5.65 million as its domestic cume now sits at $307.4 million. Suicide Squad also brought in another $10.1 million internationally this weekend including an estimated $3.6 million from its debut in Japan as its international cume now sits at $392 million for a worldwide total of $699.4 million, though keep an eye out as domestic and international actuals tomorrow afternoon could very well push it over the $700 million mark.

Elsewhere, Disney's Pete's Dragon cracked $70 million at the domestic box office after adding an estimated $2.9 million this weekend. STX's Bad Moms continues its impressive run, dropping only 40.6% this weekend and delivering an estimated $2.8 million as its domestic cume climbs to $107.5 million. After seven weekends in release Bad Moms has so far delivered a 4.51 multiplier based on its $23.8 million opening and it's still delivering solid numbers within the weekend top ten.

In limited release Focus World's Kicks brought in an estimated $32,000 from three theaters for a $10,667 PTA and Janus' Cameraperson finished with an estimated $12,897 from one theater. Additionally, Other Peoplebrought in an estimated $38,000 from 12 theaters; The Orchard's Demon finished with $13,560 from three theaters; cohen Media's Come What May brought in an estimated $10,656 from two theaters; and IFC's Dancerbrought in $7,000 from one theater.

Next weekend sees the release of Lionsgate's Blair Witch in ~2,850 theaters, Universal and Renee Zellwegerwill bring Bridget Jones back to theaters after a 12 year hiatus with Bridget Jones's Baby in 2,900+ theaters, Open Road delivers Oliver Stone's Snowden and Pure Flix will be releasing Hillsong - Let Hope Rise.

For a look at this weekend's estimated results click here and we'll be updating the charts with weekend actuals on Monday afternoon.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

The Honest Trailer for The Blair Witch Project Finally Acknowledges That This Movie Was Not Actually Scary

Remember When Star Trek Celebrated Its Anniversary With the Cast of Frasier?

Hey. Wanna see something so embarrassing for everyone involved that’ll make you break out in hives?

In 1996, Star Trek turned 30 and had the requisite birthday party where the subject tries desperately to recapture the fun of his or her 20s. Unfortunately, Paramount and CBS decided to do that with the special Star Trek: 30 Years and Beyond. And so, the cast of Frasier (minus Frasier) joinedVoyager (minus the crew, save a game Kate Mulgrew) for a sketch with the literal premise of “Frasier, but in space!”

If you look into Mulgrew’s eyes at the end, you can see her crying for help. [via i09gizmodo]