2017 Holiday Movie Pool - Final Report | Thor: Ragnarok | Justice League | Coco

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2017 Holiday Movie Pool - Final Report

Thor: Ragnarok
Justice League
Coco
Wonder
Murder on the Orient Express
Daddy’s Home 2
A Bad Moms Christmas
The Star
LBJ
All the Money in the World
Downsizing
Father Figures
Ferdinand
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Just Getting Started
Pitch Perfect 3
Star Wars: Episode VIII -  The Last Jedi
The Greatest Showman
What will the Holiday Season of 2017 be remembered for? The time fans revolted against a Star Wars as if everything was “fine” with Episodes I through III? The time every DC Superhero finally came together and no one really cared? The time Pixar acted like Coco was its biggest movie ever when all it did was beat Cars 2 and 3 (OK, and The Good Dinosaur, but we’ve all agreed that movie never happened… It’s like when Garth Brooks turned into Chris Gaines).

As far as the Christmas Break movie showdown went, it was like a Sheryl Crow song: All we wanted to do was have some fun! Jumanji, Greatest Showman, and Pitch Perfect 3 combined for almost $500 million dollars between their openings and MLK Day. On the other side, All The Money In The World, Downsizing, and Father Figures may have grossed $50 million.

Maybe Ridley Scott will try to reshoot his losses with Christopher Plummer’s face too so they don’t look so bad… or turn it into a musical! Both Mark Wahlberg and Michelle WIlliams can sing, and Christopher Plummer is the frickin’ man who’s brought tears to grown men’s eyes when he busts into Edelweiss! If only Ridley Scott had created a brutal kidnapping picture that you can tap your foot too, he might have really had something.

So, let’s try to put some of this season into perspective and see where everything landed.

- A Bad Moms Christmas was like the Sea’s Candy of the Holiday Season. No one’s mad at you for bringing it, but no one really wants to bite into the cherry nougat candy either.

- LBJ died faster than the president in Designated Survivor and he couldn’t even make it through the first episode.

- Murder on the Orient Express was more of a misdemeanor than a killing.

- Daddy’s Home 2 made four times as much as Will Ferrell's summer entry The House. Still, I’m pretty sure his best work this season was with Molly Shannon during the Rose Parade. Now let’s turn it over to Saturday Night Live’s Tim Meadows who’s standing by live on the parade route!

- Can Wonder really be Julia Roberts biggest grossing movie since Ocean’s 11 in 2001?! I wonder why she hasn’t fired about ten different agents in the past 17 years.

- If it wasn’t for the movie Star still being at my local discount theater, I wouldn’t have even known it came out. It did make about $40 million on a $20 million budget, so we can give it Ursa Minor Dwarf status.

- My wife couldn’t believe Just Getting Started got a 5% on Rotten Tomatoes, so I shared with her my sage advice: Anytime a movie sounds like it has an amazing cast from 20 years ago, it’s going to be 5% on Rotten Tomatoes.

- Ferdinand might have had it all wrong when they only cast John Cena to be the voice for their animated bull. As WWE fans know, he’s not nearly as interesting when U Can’t C Me.

- Pitch Perfect 3 was only half right. It was the third film, but it wasn’t perfect. Even Glee learned you can’t stay around forever and now Pentatonix is drinking their milkshake.

- Everytime you want to say “I wish Owen Wilson and Ed Helms would make a funny movie together,” they turn around and give you Father Figures instead. Unlike the George Michael song, this won’t be the film we love until the end of time.

- Downsizing never seemed to gain a big interest. They should’ve tried to up-sell it.

- All the Money in the World and All The Reshoots in the World still didn’t make anyone want to rush out and celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with this thriller. You can’t really blame Mark Wahlberg for making Daddy’s Home 2 and Transformers movies when his “real” films perform this poorly.

- The Greatest Showman may have started in a one ring circus, yet it’s had enough staying power to move into the Big Tent. By the end of its run, it’ll probably pass Wonder as the #6 film of the season. Knowing how Patrick Stewart always loved a Gilbert & Sullivan tune, he probably wishes he’d ended-up in this movie over Logan.

And now, because a week and a half ago was Martin Luther King Jr. Observance, here are the official Top Five Films of the Holiday Movie Pool!!!

#5. Coco - $198.2 million
#4. Justice League - $227.5 million

I lumped these two together because they both had something in common. No, not that one had great reviews while the other had meh reviews. It’s this other fact: both, somehow, turned-out to underperform what people thought they were going to do. No one really liked BvS or Suicide Squad, but those flicks made over $300 million. Coco received as many good reviews as Up and Inside Out, yet those films both topped $300 million as well. In the end, fans voted with their pocketbooks, and they decided these films were more Plain White T’s than Ed Sheeran.

#3. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle - $291.3 million
If the pool had lasted one more week, Jumanji would’ve stood tall as the #2 film on our list. As it is, it exceeded all expectations by somehow becoming the Guardians of the Galaxy of the Holiday Season in the same year we had a Guardians of the Galaxy movie! Action comedies are always hard to get right (usually the comedy isn’t all that funny or the action is too by the numbers), but Jumanji found the formula it needed to get families and those just looking for a good time to pay them a visit. Game, set, and match.

#2. Thor: Ragnarok - $313.1 million
What do you get when you take a Thor movie and make it less of a comic book movie and more of a daily comic strip movie? You get the biggest grossing Thor of all-time!!! It doesn’t matter if the main villain doesn’t make a ton of sense. The odds of Thor and Loki and Hulk ending up on the exact same planet in a whole universe of endless places isn’t important. That Jeff Goldblum’s now returned to the point where he’s just playing Jeff Goldblum again and that’s ok is fine. Why? Because we laughed. Oh, that’s funny. That’s cute. Listen to that giant rock guy talk with such a puny voice, it’s awesome! With a daily comic strip, you don’t usually remember the comics from day to day… You just want it to entertain you while you’re reading it now, and Thor: Ragnarok fit that bill.

#1. Star Wars: The Last Jedi - $594.9 million
Despite the Twitter uproar and internet petitions (seriously, who still does those?!), The Last Jedi came, saw, and conquered this Holiday Movie Pool. Yeah, there’s a flying Princess Leia, a galactic Monte Carlo, and Master Skywalker randomly milking interstellar beings without asking permission, but what are you going to do? If some people only went with their good ideas, they wouldn’t have any ideas at all. Though it’ll end-up about $300 million less than the revival mania of The Force Awakens, it made about $100 million more than Rogue One. The force may have been more whiny than strong with this one, but whiny Jedis aren’t uncommon. They almost seem like the norm.

by Matt Neuenburg on 01/25/2018

Movies Mentioned in this Post: A Bad Moms Christmas, All the Money in the World, Coco, Daddy’s Home 2, Downsizing, Father Figures, Ferdinand, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Just Getting Started, Justice League, LBJ, Murder on the Orient Express, Pitch Perfect 3, Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi, The Greatest Showman, The Star, Thor: Ragnarok, Wonder
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