No Fault With San Andreas; Spy is Left a Little in the Cold - Weeks 5 & 6 | Avengers: Age of Ultron | Pitch Perfect 2 | San Andreas

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No Fault With San Andreas; Spy is Left a Little in the Cold - Weeks 5 & 6

Avengers: Age of Ultron
Pitch Perfect 2
San Andreas
Mad Max: Fury Road
Insidious Chapter 3
Finally... The Rock... has come back to the Summer Movie Pool. Ok, ok, he was just here in 2014 with Hercules, but those were no Legendary Journeys. And, of course, he was there in Fast & Furious 6 in 2013, but he was like cotton candy at the circus. You know you're going to get it when you go there, but it's not the main reason you went in the first place. But this... This!... This is a film people are seeing and it all has to do with the most electrifying man in sports entertainment... Well, that and about $130 million in special effects.

San Andreas rolled to a $54.6 million opening weekend as it shook the box-office awake after a lackluster Me-Bore-ial Weekend. This was by far the biggest opening of any film with The Rock's name at the top of the movie poster. I'd like to think audiences were really excited to see him reunite with Carla Cugino for the first time since Race to Witch Mountain, but I'm probably one of only three people who remember that movie even happened. I'm one of only three people who normally remember lots of obscure things, since those three are usually me, myself and I... Not to be confused with Me, Myself, and Irene.

The second weekend still provided some aftershocks with another $25.8 million. It's a 53% drop that I would've expected to be larger. Maybe the target audience of men who like dumb action films (or is that dumb men who like action films? Eh, same thing) felt that Spy was too high-brow and Insidious 3 was too complicated (I mean, what if you haven't seen the first two?!). That created a perfect vacuum for San Andreas to suck up some more business and now rests on a solid footing of $98.5 million after 10 days.

On a side note, it's a good thing that Aloha means "Good-Bye" as well as "Hello" as most filmgoers just said "Good-Bye" to Aloha. In its first week it grossed $9.7 million which doesn't even cover the cost of the cast party luau they had after the shoot. Cameron Crowe's career is a big heaping pile of poi right now.

Melissa McCarthy seemed to right her Box-Office ship by steering away from her typical white-trash characters where things go terribly wrong and move more to an office worker where things go terrible wrong. At least they got the terribly wrong part right! Spy debuted with $29.1 million which is closer to the $34 million start of Identity Theft and $39 million beginning for The Heat and less like the $22 million opening of last year's Tammy. While this doesn't look like a film that will catch fire and eventually make the Top Five of the season, any person who can consistently crank out $100 million hits these days is a rare commodity and Spy looks like it'll keep Melissa's mojo going.

Give Fox credit for not trying to make this Get Smart 2 since that film didn't really work either. Instead of trying to tone-down the "This is a Melissa McCarthy Vehicle" and hide her behind Rose Byrne, Jude Law, and Jason Statham, they went the other way. "This is an R-rated film." "Let's put Melissa in an unflattering old-lady outfit painted in gold as our poster." "Fans don't care about an action comedy, they want a Melissa comedy. Focus on Melissa!" What could've been an Aloha-sized flop turned-out to be just about as good as Fox could've hoped. With little upcoming demographic competition and positive word-of-mouth, Spy should be fine.

For a third film in a series, Insidious 3 was only half the film of Insidious 2. Whereas the first sequel was evil enough to earn $40.3 million its first three days, Insidious 3 managed to scare only $22.7 million. At this point, Insidious 3 will be lucky to make a $40.3 million total as horror films typically depreciate quickly at the theaters. Just ask Poltergeist who dropped another 66% in its third week. Spooky, huh?

Meanwhile, you can take a TV series to the movies, but you can't always get a movie-size opening for a TV show. Entourage had a $10.2 million weekend for a $17.7 million five-day total as it opened on Wednesday, June 3. Like most shows, it didn't do so poorly that it should be instantly cancelled, yet it's hard to see how it's going to grow any audience in a movie-going world that likes it's TV shows where they belong... Streaming on their iPhone.

The Top Five If Today Was Labor Day:
#1. Avengers: Age of Ultron - $438.4 million
#2. Pitch Perfect 2 - $160.9 million
#3. Mad Max: Fury Road - $130.7 million
#4. San Andreas - $98.5 million
#5. Tomorrowland - $76.4 million

by Matt Neuenburg on 06/09/2015

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Aloha, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Entourage, Insidious Chapter 3, Mad Max: Fury Road, Pitch Perfect 2, San Andreas, Spy, Tomorrowland
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