'Exodus' Exits Stage Left - Week 6 | The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 | Big Hero 6 | Interstellar

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'Exodus' Exits Stage Left - Week 6

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1
Big Hero 6
Dumb and Dumber To
The Penguins of Madagascar
Exodus: Gods and Kings
Top Five

Much has been joked about releasing a movie about the origins of Passover at Christmas time. Certainly the blood, sweat, and tears and then some more blood of The Passion of the Christ would not have connected the same way with audiences if it was released in the winter time when people enjoy their Ricky Bobby "Baby Jesus" imagery. Still, The Ten Commandments was released in November in 1956 and that certainly didn't stop it from becoming one of the most successful films of all-time. Besides, who's more of a modern-day Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner then Christian Bale and Joel, eh, What's-His-Name? Oh boy, this can't go well.

Ridley Scott's retelling of the Moses story Exodus: Gods and Kings was neither sacred or regal with a $24.1 million debut. Even comparing Exodus to the "other" big-budget Hollywood Bible movie of the year, this was about $20 million less than Noah's $43.7 million opening of the flood gates. If the producers want to feel really bad, Heaven is for Real opened similarly this Spring with $22.5 million and only cost $12 million to make instead of Exodus' $140 million. Whoopsie!

Was any of this due to the internet buzz about boycotting this movie based on their lack of casting Egyptians in a movie based in where again? Oh yeah, Egypt. While it is hard to take Ridley Scott's claims that he needed big name stars to get the budget he needed to make this movie when Joel Edgerton is the second name on the credit roll, this is probably more of a red herring than a Red Sea. Previous films that have been criticized for similar reasons were The Last Airbender and Prince of Persia. I'm pretty sure those films flopped because they were mind-numbingly terrible. In Hollywood we've learned you can get the budget you want, but that doesn't mean you're making a film people want to see. 47 Ronin, anyone?

Katniss and crew kept The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 afloat one last weekend before the rest of the season's heavy hitters arrive with $12.7 million. Laying its cards on the table with $276.9 million, that's an impressive though not insurmountable total if one of these final films can catch lightning in a bottle. As usual, President Snow is feeling confident yet even the cocky occasionally get their comeuppance.

Penguins of Madagascar continued to thaw with $7.2 million and a $58 million total. Even someone as short as The Hobbit will probably be towering over this total after its opening weekend.

Big Hero 6 and Interstellar continued to fortify their positions on the Top Five as they've amassed $185.2 and $166.7 million respectively. While people may have missed which would be the bigger hit between the two, it's clear there was plenty of room for two hits on the first weekend of the 2014 season.

In other news, Chris Rock's Top Five movie debuted in limited release with $6.9 million. While not too shabby for a limited release, it looks like it will un-ironically never be in our Top Five.

The Top Five If Today Was Martin Luther King Jr. Observance:
#1. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 - $276.9 million
#2. Big Hero 6 - $185.2 million
#3. Interstellar - $166.6 million
#4. Dumb and Dumber To - $82.1 million
#5. Penguins of Madagascar - $58.7 million

by Matt Neuenburg on 12/17/2014

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Big Hero 6, Dumb and Dumber To, Exodus: Gods and Kings, Interstellar, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1, The Penguins of Madagascar, Top Five
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