Neil Blomkamp has followed up his 2010 breakout success District 9 with two bombs in a row, first Elysium and now Chappie, which opened at number one with just $13.3 million. The critics didn't support this film (just 30% on Rotten Tomatoes), and given the fact that Blomkamp seems to perhaps have been a fluke, you have to be wondering about the studio's recent decision to hire him to direct the next Alien movie. The other new release this week was The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, which landed in third with $8.6 million from about 1500 theaters, an okay result, especially given that the first film was strictly a limited release to begin with. And Unfinished Business bombed outright, pulling in a paltry $4.8 million for tenth place, making it Vince Vaughn's lowest opener ever. With so many bombs in recent years, it's no wonder Vaughn is now headed to TV to try to rebrand himself on HBO's True Detective.
Focus fell 45% to second place, earning $10 million for a $34 million total so far, not a great result, while Kingsman has almost hit $100 million and Fifty Shades of Grey fell out of the top five, but has earned a total of $156 million so far (and half a billion worldwide). Finally, American Sniper passed Hunger Games to become the top grossing movie of 2014, amassing $337 million, which is a huge marker and a boon to people who'd like to see the top box office movies of the year boast something other than franchise and superhero films once in a while. The last decade has been pretty ugly on that score, but this one obviously clicked in a big way.
- Chappie- $13.3 million
- Focus- $10 million
- The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel- $8.6 million
- Kingsman: The Secret Service- $8.3 million
- The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water- $7 million
Next week the box office should finally pick up some, maybe quite a bit, when Disney's new Cinderella movie opens- despite no big names in the cast other than Cate Blanchett, this new genre of rebooted fairy tales has been quite popular, and surprisingly, so far at least, the Kenneth Branagh directed film has actually been getting some decent reviews. Also opening is Liam Neeson's Run All Night, which may get some traction despite Taken 3 already having come out in the last couple of months- we'll see if the Neeson action fans have tired of him yet this year.