Weekend @ the Box Office

Thanksgiving weekend involves two important events. Thanksgiving (because food) and Black Friday. Rarely does anybody venture out to the theater on this fattening holiday. The only time I went to the theater on Thanksgiving weekend was to watch Tower Heist with my uncle. It was okay. This weekend, you lucky bastards got to see the Star Wars: The Force Awakens teaser on the big screen if you went to participating theaters. I saw it on my phone after waking up from a food coma. I imagine this had an impact in the numbers this weekend. Mockingjay: Part 1 had a 53% drop to a gross of $56,875,000. Penguins of Madagascar plopped into second place with $25,800,000. Big Hero 6 is going strong with only a 6.7% drop from the previous week to land $18,770,000. Interstellar actually went up by 3% this week and brought in $15,800,000 – a rare feat for any movie. Horrible Bosses 2 proved that it was definitely a movie, opening to a very disappointing $15,700,000. Comedy sequels are weird like that.

Movie News

Are you tired of Frozen? Too bad! Because Idina Menzel (Adele Dazeem) says Frozen 2 is happening. I personally love Frozen and consider it one of the better entries in the ever-growing Disney canon. The story itself works for all its simplicity and willingness to commit to a thematic  line. Point A to point B. “Let It Go” brought tears to my eyes for goodness sakes. But a sequel is risky business. Where does the story even go from here? Do we begin introducing new characters empowered by new elements for Elsa and Anna to meet, befriend, and fight? What fairytale tropes could they subvert next time? Okay, I just excited myself for the inevitable Frozen sequel.

Ridley Scott made two of my favorite movies, Blade Runner and Alien. Both were entered into our Greats category here at AE. I didn’t hate Prometheus and I actually champion The Counselor. And even Robin Hood has some nice scenery (that one is definitely a big misfire). I can’t for the life of me get excited about Exodus: Gods and Kings and anytime I hear about Blade Runner 2, I get scared. Scott would most likely bring his Prometheus visuals to a now modern world of Blade Runner but who cares? Prometheus was so big that it fell under the weight of its own themes and a shitty script.  A Blade Runner 2 that involves the search for Harrison Ford’s character is such an odd choice. Mostly because Blade Runner is one that I consider to be a (HYPERBOLE WARNING) perfect movie. The intimate scale of the urban decay will likely be done away with for a larger canvas of generic science fiction mumbo jumbo. The good/bad news is that Scott himself will not returning. The bad/good news is that young directors will probably storm the gates hoping to direct this one. As long as new talent gets discovered, that’s one positive.

Guillermo Del Toro loves working on stories more than anything. So much so that he took time to speak to Collider about his plans for returning characters in Pacific Rim 2. First up are Charlie Day and Burn Gorman returning as Dr. Geiszler and Dr. Gottlieb, respectively. I’m glad these guys are returning and I hope all the other colorful characters are returning as well. We’ll be seeing new Kaiju, Jaegers, and characters with only a few returning (Del Toro mentioned enjoying writing Hannibal Chau as well). I love this wacky world he’s built but at the very least, I need Rinko Kikuchi back to kick ass in and out of a Jaeger. And Ron Perlman looking for his shoe after being eaten by the baby Kaiju.

More on Del Toro’s insane work ethic, Forbes reports he finally handed in his script for Justice League: Dark. The script focuses on the darker more magical side of the DC universe with characters like John Constantine, Zatanna, Swamp Thing, and more teaming up to save the world. This would be a separate entity from the DC cinematic universe that includes the regular Justice League (Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman, Flash, etc). The title has also been changed to Dark Universe which works just fine for me. It’s a hard sell anyway for this side of the DC universe. Del Toro isn’t known for his box office breaking numbers. He just understands the most important aspect of movie making: how to tell a story.

Trailer of the Week

Star Wars 7 had a teaser drop this week, along with PAN and Jurassic World. The truth of the matter is that they were all very good. We’ve already spoken about the Star Wars teaser at length so there’s no need to discuss that here. I expected to hate the PAN trailer and it actually looks visually stunning. But who are we kidding? This belongs to Jurassic World. Chris Pratt ditches his funny guy persona and goes full on hero mode by riding a motorcycle next to his pack of velociraptors. That’s the American dream. The CGI is unfinished but we’ve got 6 months until it’s ready to go anyways. I do find it odd that this trailer had so much unfinished CGI but no real money shots. It probably would have been better to use some Spielberg reaction shots against silhouettes of the dinosaurs and focused on getting the CG done for just one dinosaur (the Dino-Shamu). While the Diabolous Rex (badass actual name of the Dino hybrid) has received mixed reactions from fans, I love it. If I remember correctly, director Colin Trevorrow explained that once the park was open, the park goers grew tired of the traditional dinosaurs, so the new company behind JW creates a new creature to peak interest once again. It’s a little meta commentary that will hopefully differentiate this from a standard creature feature into a kick ass dinosaur movie with as much brains as brawn. But I guess for the sake of a reboot, we’ll just forget about those Pterodactyls flying away at the end of Jurassic Park 3.

Tweets of the Week