'Mockingjay' Flies But Doesn't 'Catch Fire' - Week 3 | The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 | Big Hero 6 | Interstellar

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'Mockingjay' Flies But Doesn't 'Catch Fire' - Week 3

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1
Big Hero 6
Dumb and Dumber To
Beyond the Lights

The smart money in this Holiday Movie Pool has always been betting on The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 as the sure thing #1 film of the season. Both of the first two films started with over $150 million weekends and each grossed over $400 million total. This series is a machine. Nothing can stop it. You could replace Jennifer Lawrence with Martin Lawrence and have Peeta played by Joey Lawrence and folks would still line-up. At least, that's what people thought... until the film actually came out.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 had a 2014 holiday season best opening of $121.9 million which sounds pretty nice if you hear a mockingjay sing it. When you look at the previous films, though, it's $35 million less than The Hunger Games: Catching Fire debuted with over the same weekend last year. Yes, Mockingjay - Part One lost about the entire opening weekend of Dumb and Dumber To. That's not smart.

What happened to this sure thing? It's not like people have forgotten who Jennifer Lawrence is after two straight Oscar seasons and her last five hit movies. It's undeniable that the first teaser for Mockingjay fell flat, but who needs a gonzo trailer when you've made $800 million with the first two films? People are just supposed to go see the next one, right? How else could Police Academy 3 been a hit? Maybe there was more buzz in the first two movies because there actually was a Hunger Games in their stories and Mockingjay is more The Battle of the 13 Districts. Of course, the more likely reason is that everyone is Team Peeta (even Miley Cyrus wasn't on Team Gale and she was engaged to him) and Peeta's much more of a Part 2 in the Mockingjay saga. Wake me when the baker boy shows up!

All that said, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 still looks to be the favorite of the season. It's unlikely anything will even come close to that opening weekend. It's just a little curious that people weren't as starving for this round of the Hunger Games.

Last week Big Hero 6 and Interstellar were the #2 and #3 movies in the country. This weekend they remained the #2 and #3 movies! Big Hero 6 enjoyed its last Penguins-free weekend and dropped another very respectable 42% by pumping-in $20.1 million for its inflated $135.7 million total. Interstellar stayed in orbit with a 46% decline as it hovered with $15.3 million and rests with $120.9 million so far. This isn't the closing of the gap Interstellar gamblers were betting on, however, the Penguins of Madagascar might let some of the air out of Disney's balloon.

To say it was surprising to see Dumb and Dumber To plummet 61% in its second weekend would be, uh, you know... dumb. The self-claimed 'Dumb' movie grossed $14.1 million for a $57.7 million 10-day gross. Well, sequels generally fall more than new films as existing fans flock for the first weekend. Likewise, films deemed, uh, you know... dumb by both the filmgoers and critics usually tumble faster than most. If you don't have strong word of mouth, that's what Cable TV is for when they have six-minute commercial breaks to stretch out a 90-minute movie to 2 1/2 hours. That's the way Dumb and Dumber To is intended to be seen... When it's even dumber to be watching it.

For those expecting Beyond The Lights to explode after people mistook it for an environmentalism film about going back to using candles and saving electricity, the answer is no. It fell 57% and has made $10.1 million in 10 days. Even when it goes green, no one goes to this film.

The Top Five If Today Was Martin Luther King Jr. Observance:
#1. Big Hero 6 - $135.7 million
#2. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 - $121.9 million
#3. Interstellar - $120.9 million
#4. Dumb and Dumber To - $57.7 million
#5. Beyond The Lights - $10.1 million

by Matt Neuenburg on 11/24/2014

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Beyond the Lights, Big Hero 6, Dumb and Dumber To, Interstellar, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1
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