2005 Holiday Movie Pool Final Report | The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe | Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire | King Kong

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2005 Holiday Movie Pool Final Report

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
King Kong
Chicken Little
Walk the Line
Fun With Dick And Jane
Brokeback Mountain
Cheaper by the Dozen 2
Memoirs of a Geisha
Munich
Rumor Has It
Aeon Flux
Match Point
To all those who have asked for you five dollars back since I've been about as faithful at sending out updates as Cher has been at staying away after Farewell tours, the answer is no. For all those who just thought their Spam filters had been sending my emails directly to their Deleted Items folder where they belonged, you're probably right.

With that said, it's time for the 2005 Holiday Movie Pool Final Report!

Why now, why this? Because this at least acknowledges that I realize the pool is over and I need to do something about it. Since I was too strapped for time to even get people's picks into the Scooberific excel file my wife devised a couple years ago to make my life easier, I've been have to go through all 40-plus submissions every week to see who's really on the leaderboard. Surprisingly there are more important things in life like making sure I catch every single According To Jim episode so I can insure Jim Belushi stays on TV where he belongs and not in a fourth, yes fourth, K-9 movie. The things I do for the public good astound me sometimes…

To celebrate an email from me, let's say goodbye to the December pretenders and welcome in the Top Five films.

The Tragedies (The films people put in their Top Five that just didn't cut the mustard, even if they did find a way to cut the cheese)

The Producers produced nothing but heartache for poolers. Apparently they miscalculated how many of its fans from Broadway would want to drop another $10 after already paying $100 to see it live. With only $17 million to it's name so far, this was a bigger bust than last year's Phantom of the Opera and that had such big stars as Whats-His-Name and Who's-Her-Face.

Memoirs of a Geisha looked like a kung-fu version of America's Next Top Model. Instead it wasn't even as good as Berry Gordy's The Last Dragon which featured the definite and only portrayal of the legendary Bruce Lee Roy. Anyone who can be that tough while El DeBarge music is playing in the background has wanna be startin' something, has got to be startin' something.

Match Point is the best Woody Allen film since the last Woody Allen film and is destined to make just about as little.

Munich was a little too early to cash in on that Winter Olympic fever and too late to cash in on that post-Oktoberfest hangover.

Brokeback Mountain should do just fine over the long haul through the Awards season, but for a quick fix blockbuster pool, it's not one of the Fab Five.

Cheaper By The Dozen 2 was destined to fail as soon as they didn't roll with the Cheaper By The Bakers Dozen title. Even a Cheaper Buy The Two Dozen would've at least been a nice way to go. Is there somewhere I can apply for that Official Namer of All Sequels job?

Aeon Flux couldn't have fluxed any more if it tried. Some day we'll have to explore what lead Academy Award winning actresses Angelina Jolie, Halle Berry, and Charlize Theron to follow-up their statues with gawd-awful action pics. To Jolie's credit at least Tomb Raider did make bank, even if it was to action movies what a straw is to soda: pure suckage.

Rumor Has It that if Jennifer Anniston's The Break Up with Vince Vaughn tanks she'd be back to waiting at coffee houses again. Considering Vaugn's so money and he doesn't even know it after Wedding Crashers, she'll get another chance at the Holiday Movie Pool someday.

Fun With Dick and Jane was fun enough to come just $5 mill short of cracking the Top Five, yet Jim Carrey was shut out again. That's two years in a row Jimmy has seemed positioned for a Top Five Spot (last year with Lemony Snickett) and just missed the mark. Bruce Almighty is starting to seem as long ago as Liar Liar is.

The Top Five flicks because 10 days ago was Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Observance...

#5. Walk The Line - $97.9 million
In a season built by blockbusters there always seems to be a smaller, more award-worthy film that seems to make the list. Usually, when I think of smaller, award-worthy films I'm thinking Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, but the hit-song from that movie Puberty Love aside, I guess Walk The Line fit that bill this time around.

#4. Chicken Little - $134 million
This wasn't quite the CGI animation smash the Disney machine was hoping. It made less than every Pixar film and even less than the recent competitions fare of Ice Age, Robots, Shark Tales, Madagascar, and both Shreks. That said, it still made the Top Five here, will make a mint on DVD sales, and best yet we won't have to deal with Disney somehow finding a contractual loophole to find a way to add Abby The Ugly Duckling into their Princess collections. It's a win-win all the way around, I'd say.

#3. King Kong - $203 million
Not quite the 8th Wonder of the World, however still a smash movie any way you slice it. Peter Jackson won't have to bother with any of his distracters that his film was too long. He'll just have to point to the global box-office results and say "Scoreboard". However to poolers like myself who got Sucker MC'd into the hype and picked the flick as their top pick, that scoreboard reads: "Game Over."

#2. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch. & The Wardrobe - $261.3 million
Only slightly more successful than the Chronicles of Riddick, this tale of four children saving a fictional world from an evil witch's army was just a touch more believable than Gilligan and his friends being stranded on desert island for 20 years until the Harlem Globetrotters showed up to save the day. Still, in a few more weeks this film will go on to eventually pass this pool's #1 film. Yet, since this pool doesn't go on until St. Patrick's Day, we have a winner and it's...

#1. Harry Potter & The Goblet of Fire - $283.9 million
Don't call it a comeback, he's been here for three Holiday pools. A #1 in 2001, a #2 in 2002 and now back to the top in 2005. The PG-13 didn't hurt it, The O.C.ness didn't hurt it, and more importantly, not a single film this season could hold a candle (or a goblet) to it. The rumors of this franchise's demise have been greatly exaggerated. Sadly, this means I'll probably only have to work on 40 international HP sites in 2007 instead of the 30 for this go-round. Three huzzahs for the "off" year!

by Matt Neuenburg on 12/31/2005

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Aeon Flux, Brokeback Mountain, Cheaper by the Dozen 2, Chicken Little, Fun With Dick And Jane, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, King Kong, Match Point, Memoirs of a Geisha, Munich, Rumor Has It, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Walk the Line
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