Film Discussion

US Box Office Report: 01/10/21 – 03/10/21

Venom causes box office Carnage, the Many Saints of Newark get whacked, maybe people have been a little excited about this whole Bond thing huh, and Other Box Office News.

Friends… can I call us “friends”?  We’re friends, right?  I feel like we’ve shared enough of ourselves with each other over the past three and a bit years, allowed ourselves moments of honest intimacy, and connected on a deeper level than just “not-a-guy on the Internet writing words into the void for people to scroll past disinterestedly on a midweek lunchbreak”.

We’ve transcended such a transactional relationship, I feel, so I’m willing to call us all friends here.  Therefore, as your friend, I am compelled to ask this question… are you ok?  No, really, are you doing ok?  I know that it’s been an extremely long and depression-inducing couple of years with the never-ending plague and looming disasters on the horizon, so it’s perfectly normal to act out in strange ways and I get that.  Truly, I do.

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But, well…  are y’all certain you’re alright?  I ask because Venom: Let There Be Carnage just smashed the record for Best Pandemic-Era Opening Weekend with, no really, $90 million.  For those who don’t have photographic memories pertaining to movie financials, that marks a $10 million increase on the opening of the original Venom in 2018 which, need I remind you, occurred back in pre-COVID times.  When laid out like that, hopefully you can see why I’m so concerned about you all at the moment.

I mean, I’m presuming this means you saw that original Venom and how much of a boringly bad time it was, yet willingly turned up to a sequel directed by Gollum from Lord of the Rings (of all people) despite that knowledge.  Enough of you, in fact, to break records!  What happened to you to make you do this to yourselves?  You can tell me, we’re friends here.  Unless this is just more of that “irony lolz chaos bantz” thing which took the original to the edges of $1 billion, in which case I think that it’s time we start seeing other people.

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Other people like those friendly neighbourhood mobsters, the young Sopranos!  Or, actually, maybe not since The Many Saints of Newark was kind of a mess and it turns out that not a whole lot of people were clamouring for a Sopranos prequel movie in 2021.  Newark sleeps with the fishies in a dismal fourth place, $5 million opening as Warner Brothers’ terrible horrible no good very bad year continues unabated.

Landing somewhere in the middle of those polar opposite performances was the non-creepy, non-kooky, non-spooky and certainly non-ooky animated Addams Family sequel which made $18 million for second place, down $10 mil from the opening of the original, but with the major caveat that those numbers were in spite of the film also providing a day-and-date digital rental option since, y’know, plague’s not over yet.  Meanwhile, in Moderate Release, Raw director Julia Ducournau’s Palme d’Or winning and controversy-courting follow-up Titane couldn’t turn that buzz and promise of genuine bad taste weirdness – in contrast to Venom’s corporate-mandated “bad” “weirdness” – into actual cash; $515,417 from 562 screens for a bleak sub-$1,000 per-screen average.

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Before we jump into the list proper, however, it’s all kicking off overseas.  Firstly, Your International Dune Update: crossed $100 mil in those lower-key markets it deliberately launched first at in an effort to curb piracy or whatever lame-ass excuse Warner Bros. are using for their denying me Denis Villeneuve another three weeks.  It’s looking like it’ll be fine.  Of course, the BIG overseas news this weekend, and the reason why Dune slipped a bit in some of those foreign markets, is that the endless march towards No Time to Die finally reached the station.

And, whaddya know?  Turns out A LOT of people have been looking forward to seeing a sub-par James Bond movie as their official bellwether that “CINEMA IS BACK, BABY!”  No Time is already over $119 million in those first few days and that’s without America (where the film bows next week) or China (where they really like James Bond for some reason) and their considerable financial boots.  Unsurprisingly, the UK was where it did strongest with a franchise-best opening of $34.8 million RULE BRITTANIA BRITTANIA RULES THE WAVES.

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No BOR next week since I’m gonna be at the London Film Festival.  Feel free to say “hi!” if you’re also down there and want to make me extremely anxious!  Here’s the Full List.

US Box Office Results: Friday 1st October 2021 – Sunday 3rd October 2021

1] Venom: Let There Be Carnage

$90,100,000 / NEW

Well, I guess I got my wish of this causing something interesting to happen for the BOR write-ups, at least.

2] The Addams Family 2

$18,007,000 / NEW

Legitimately keep forgetting that this is supposed to be out here this coming Friday, and not just because I’m very tunnel-vision regarding LFF at the moment.  I have not seen anything anywhere about an Addams Family sequel at all, and I have been to multiple family and animated movies in the last two months where you would expect a trailer or even just a teaser to be played beforehand!  Yet, zilch!  They were still playing Hotel Transylvania 4 trailers three weeks ago despite that film having been yanked completely for Prime Video months back!  Are we certain this is a real film and not an elaborate psi-op experiment?

3] Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

$6,037,000 / $206,108,802

“OH MY GOD, DAREDEVIL SEASON 4 HAS TOTALLY BEEN CONF-” lemme stop you right there before you Van Halen ‘Jump’ yourself to any unearned conclusions.  It’s a Fleetwood Mac rumour about something allegedly in “active development” which is not the same thing at all as something definitely happening.  Lots of things are in “active development” all the time at major studios, especially when it comes to potential spin-offs and such, and just as many never go any further than that.  So to say that it’s been “CONFIRMED” based on gossip and a not-at-all convincing fan poster photoshop is quite the S Club 7 ‘Reach’ bound only to set you up for getting Pet Shop Boys ‘Disappointed’ if it doesn’t happen.

Of course, my track record being what it is, the act of my writing about it here now means it’ll definitely happen sos I can meet my quota of egg-on-face for the year, like when “a” Snyder Cut finally came about shortly after my ranting in one of these about how “the” Snyder Cut would never happen.  If this ends up being the case… you’re welcome, nerds!

4] The Many Saints of Newark

$5,000,000 / NEW

I already said my piece so, for an alternate take, go check out Dave Bond’s much more positive views instead.  I’m just a notoriously grumpy whinge, after all!

5] Dear Evan Hansen

$2,450,000 / $11,799,160

Y’know something?  Between this, Tom Hooper’s Cats, and that Diana: The Musical which got posted to Netflix over the weekend, I’m starting to get the impression that theatre kids want to be bullied.  Maybe it’s a shared kink of theirs, which would explain this very real piece of musical theatre that played freely on Broadway prior to COVID for audiences who willingly paid cash money to witness and was preserved on film for future generations.  As somebody also down for a little bit of masochism and sub tendencies, I can relate to that shame kink.

6] Free Guy

$2,278,000 / $117,627,530

Finally!  We have found the one thing which can reliably and meaningfully eat into Free Guy’s weekend performances!  No, it’s not Venom, don’t be ridiculous.  I’m talking about the fact that the 45-day exclusive theatrical window expired last week so Free Guy is now freely available to stream on D+.

7] Candyman

$1,230,000 / $58,902,560

So, I did not actually end up seeing Candyman.  Not, as you may think, because I’m an easily-scared baby who bottled it when presented with the ticket-booking machine.  But in actuality because I spent most of my Sunday with one of my best friends exercising, hiking, and generally hanging and, by the time I got done at hers, it was late enough that No Time to Die’s 163-minute runtime effectively erased any chance of my getting into a Candyman screening.  Given how miserable of a time I had with Bond, I think I made the wrong judgement call on which of the two movies to drop.

8] Jungle Cruise

$680,000 / $116,063,358

On the subject of horrors and anxiety, especially now that Spooky Season is in full effect, Brooker’s penned a thoughtful little piece on his relationship with both the time of the season (for loooooviiiiiing) and the genre at large.  It deserves more eyeballs, go give it a read.

9] Chal Mera Putt 3

$644,000 / NEW

Speaking of Film Festivals, our resident Canadian correspondent Nicholas Lay is currently out at the Vancouver International Film Festival Lay-ing his eyes on its wares!  Keep checking in over the next couple of weeks for more of his dispatches!

10] The Jesus Music

$560,250 / NEW

If there’s one thing that lovers of contemporary Christian music like the kind profiled in this documentary definitely have nothing but respect and support for, it’s trans people!  Seahorse: The Dad Who Gave Birth, about a trans-man’s efforts to birth a child, recently got a UK release and Amy Walker checked it out.

Dropped out: Cry Macho, Malignant, Copshop, PAW Patrol: The Movie, Love Story

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