Category Archives: Movies

Where the Data Ranks 2017’s Comic Book Films. Kingsman Debuts at #1.

2017 feels like it’s shaping up to be a wild ride for comic adaptions. We look at who the real winners and losers are for this year’s comic films.

A new comic adaptation has hit theaters this past weekend as Kingsman: The Golden Circle debuted with an impressive $39 million domestically which increases on the original film’s debut. Worldwide, the film has already earned $100.2 million on a $104 million budget.

Spider-Man: Homecoming continues to get a late boost and is now the top grossing comic adaptation of the year passing Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and then some. Where I had the film as debatable, the late boost at the foreign box office has put the film in the win column for the year.

Wonder Woman continues to impress as it winds down its run. It’s still the highest earning domestic earner for a comic film this year so far.

Atomic Blonde is approaching $100 million and will be a moderate success.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is making a comeback and has finally crossed the threshold so that its worldwide total is greater than its budget. Still not good, but also not a disaster of Titanic proportion.

Lets compare how the big two comic companies compare for earnings. On average DC films earn $339.5 million domestically while Marvel earns $308.3 million. Internationally, Marvel rules with $476.9 million and DC lags behind with $437.1 million. There’s still work for DC when it comes to the international film market.

Already, the year is an interesting one with three clear successes and a whole lot of mixed otherwise. Wonder Woman, Logan, Spider-Man: Homecomning, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 have done well this year. The LEGO Batman Movie and Smurfs: The Lost Village, and Atomic Blonde are in that debatable area, and ValerianWilson and Ghost in the Shell are generally disappointments. Marvel’s Inhumans… got no clue and tough to debate since it’s a television show primarily with a limited film engagement.

Here’s where this year’s comic films stand as far as the actual numbers. With a new film opening the averages have dipped.

Total Domestic Gross: $1.754 billion
Total International Gross: $2.520 billion
Worldwide Gross: $4.274 billion
Total Reported Budgets: $1.187 million
Total “Profit”: $3.084 billion

Average Domestic Gross: $146.1 million
Average International Gross: $229.1 million
Average: Worldwide Gross: $356.2 million
Average Budget: $107.9 million
Average Profit: $248.2 million

Below is where the films released stand when it comes to being compared to this year’s averages. Those in green are above average while those below are red.

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Tops the Box Office While LEGO Ninjago Falls Short

Kingsman: The Golden Circle was the top of the box office this past weekend earning an estimated $39 million with a budget of $104 million. That’s an improvement on the $36.2 million opening for the first film in the series which eventually went on to earn $128.3 million domestically and $414.4 worldwide. The sequel also brought in an estimated $61.2 million overseas from 55 territories.

The film received a “B+” CinemaScore and played to an audience that was 58% male, 65% was 25 years or older, and 60% between the ages of 18 and 34.

Coming in second place was It which added $30 million to its domestic total to bring the film to $266.3 million domestically. It’s the highest grossing R-rated horror film of all-time (not adjusted for inflation). Worldwide the film has earned $478 million, a monster haul.

The LEGO Ninjago Movie looks like it’s off to a bumpy start earning $21.2 million which is the lowest opening for a movie in the LEGO franchise and short of expectations. The film received a “B+” CinemaScore, the lowest of the franchise. The film was 48% male and 52% female, and 46% under the age of 18. Internationally, the film also earned an estimated $10.5 million from 37 markets and will roll out in other markets through October. It’s possible two films in the franchise in one year was a misstep.

In fourth place was American Assassin which added $6.3 million to its domestic total to bring that to $26.2 million on a $33 million budget. Worldwide the film has earned $32.3 million after two weeks.

Rounding out the top five was Home Again which added $3.3 million to its domestic total bringing that to $22.3 million off of a $12 million budget.

When it comes to comic movie adaptations….

Spider-Man: Homecoming came in at #11 adding $1.1 million to its total. It now stand at $331.9 million domestically and with its $6 million internationally it now stands at $875 million worldwide making it the highest grossing superhero/comic film of the year.

Atomic Blonde added $81,000 to its domestic total to bring that to $51.5 million domestically and $95.6 million worldwide.

We’ll be back in an hour for a more in-depth look at this year’s comic adaptations.

Where the Data Ranks 2017’s Comic Book Films. Spider-Man Now Challenges Guardians

2017 feels like it’s shaping up to be a wild ride for comic adaptions. We look at who the real winners and losers are for this year’s comic films.

Spider-Man: Homecoming continues to get a late boost in its run seeing a $36 million jump over the past week that has the film now just $2 million behind Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 to become the top grossing comic film of 2017 so far. The film has seen almost 62% of its earnings come from the foreign box office continuing this year’s narrative that the foreign box office rules the year.

Wonder Woman continues to impress as it winds down its run. It’s still the highest earning domestic earner for a comic film this year so far.

Atomic Blonde is approaching $100 million and will be a moderate success.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is making a comeback and has finally crossed the threshold so that its worldwide total is greater than its budget. Still not good, but also not a disaster of Titanic proportion.

Lets compare how the big two comic companies compare for earnings. On average DC films earn $339.3 million domestically while Marvel earns $308.3 million. Internationally, Marvel rules with $476.9 million and DC lags behind with $436.8 million. There’s still work for DC when it comes to the international film market.

Already, the year is an interesting one with three clear successes and a whole lot of mixed otherwise. Wonder Woman, Logan, Spider-Man: Homecomning, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 have done well this year. The LEGO Batman Movie and Smurfs: The Lost Village, and Atomic Blonde are in that debatable area, and ValerianWilson and Ghost in the Shell are generally disappointments. Marvel’s Inhumans… got no clue and tough to debate since it’s a television show primarily with a limited film engagement.

Here’s where this year’s comic films stand as far as the actual numbers:

Total Domestic Gross: $1.712 billion
Total International Gross: $2.443 billion
Worldwide Gross: $4.155 billion
Total Reported Budgets: $1.083 million
Total “Profit”: $3.069 billion

Average Domestic Gross: $155.6 million
Average International Gross: $244.3 million
Average: Worldwide Gross: $377.7 million
Average Budget: $108.3 million
Average Profit: $306.9 million

Below is where the films released stand when it comes to being compared to this year’s averages. Those in green are above average while those below are red.

It Repeats at #1 at the Weekend Box Office Setting a September Record

It has broken records in just eight days with a second weekend haul of $60 million for close to $220 million in ten days domestically. The cume of $218.7 million in ten days is the largest September release ever beating Crocodile Dundee‘s $174.8 million back in 1986. That’s not adjusted for inflation, which when happens, still puts the film in the top ten. It’s just $14.2 million shy of becoming the largest R-rated horror movie of all time.

The film also opened in ten more overseas markets for a total of 56. It grossed an estimated $60.3 million for an international total of $152.6 million bringing the global total to $370 million.

In second place was the new film American Assassin which brought in an estimated $14.8 million. That beat some forecasts and the film received a “B+” CinemaScore from an opening day audience that was 55% male and 45% female with 29% under the age of 35. The film also grossed an estimated $6.2 million internationally.

Darren Aronofsky’s mother! was the talk of the weekend in third place. The film received an “F” CinemaScore, one of only 19 films to ever receive that score. The movie earned an estimated $7.5 million from an audience that was 44% male and 56% female with 18% under the age of 25. Th efilm also earned $6 million internationally for what is a failure all around. Don’t expect this one to last in theaters long, but expect it to become a cult classic in its own way.

Fourth place was held by Home Again which added $5.3 million to its domestic total to bring that to $17.1 million.

Rounding out the top five was The Hitman’s Bodyguard which earned an estimated $3.6 million to its domestic total to bring it to $70.4 million.

When it comes to comic adaptations domestically….

Spider-Man: Homecoming slipped a couple of spots to come in at #9 adding $1.9 million to its total and bring its domestic gross to $330.3 million.

At #25 was Atomic Blonde which added $167,000 to its total to bring it to $51.3 million domestically.

Finally, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was #44 adding $28,000 to its domestic total to bring that to $389.8 million.

This coming weekend sees the opening of the next comic adaptation, Kingsman: The Golden Circle which will have stiff competition from The LEGO Ninjago Movie. We’ll have a deeper dive into this year’s comic adaptations in an hour.

Movie Review: mother!

mother posterI have another name for this movie.

Yes, it starts with mother! But it ends with a word you can’t say on television that Samuel L. Jackson likes. A lot.

This is one of the most astoundingly ponderous and pretentious films I’ve seen in years. Director Darren Aronofsky can be hit or miss, and this is perhaps his biggest miss ever. It’s like he took the reactions to Noah, in which critics and audiences did not like his retelling of the story of the biblical flood, and said, “Oh, you hated that? Great, well now I’m going to do it to THE ENTIRE BIBLE.”

This is incredibly unfortunate, for a movie that is spectacularly acted and meticulously filmed. The film follows Jennifer Lawrencemarried to Javier Bardem, a poet suffering from writers’ block. When unexpected houseguests Ed Harris and Michelle Pfeiffer arrive, they begin to cause problems, as do their children, played by siblings Domhnall  and Brian Gleeson. But Bardem’s poet can’t get enough of the attention they lavish on him for his talent, and despite his wife’s protestations to send the guests away and the damage they do to their house, more and more guests arrive. There is supposedly a metaphor in here for the biblical Genesis story, which eventually muddles through the arrival of a Messianic child and an eventual apocalypse, but it’s too ponderous and clumsily told that the metaphor collapses under its own weight.

Even the title mother! is pretentious and offputting. It literally shouts at us with its exclamation mark. And then emphasizes its lower-case m so we know this is a Very Serious Important Move about Very Serious Things, like a college sophomore who decides their name shouldn’t be capitalized so they can stand out in the crowd and show off how self-effacing they are.

This film is the textbook definition of laying it on too thick, with a steaming side of heavy hands. And, astoundingly, at the same time, it is hella confusing for the first two-thirds of the film! As an audience member coming in, you’re left wondering exactly what is going on or what you’re supposed to be taking away from this.

The themes are all over the place. Is this movie about the erasure of the divine feminine from Christianity? Is it about the lack of respect for women and the creative, nurturing force? Is this about the environment and Mother Earth / Gaia? Is this about the creative process and the relationship between artist and audience? Is it a horror movie? Are the events depicted on screen actually happening, metaphor, or some sort of surrealistic nightmare?

Apparently the answer to all of these is yes. And no. To quote Janeane Garofalo in the cult classic Mystery Men, You’re not well-liked. You’re abrasive and off-putting. You try and say pithy things, but your wit is a hindrance and so, therefore nothing is provocative.It’s just mixed metaphors.”

When you take a classic, beautifully woven epic with multiple themes like Les Miserables or Anna Karenina or The Godfather, whether the medium is the page, the stage, or the screen, the skilled autuer will fully develop those themes and make them accessible at multiple levels.

With mother!, Aronofsky doesn’t fully develop any of them, and so the film in trying to say everything, in fact, says nothing. This leaves even the most ardent lover of film confused is not a sign of brilliance. It is a sign of failure.   

And where the film really strikes out is in its attempts to have a message of feminism, it mostly just ends up glorifying violence towards and erasure of women. I’m sorry, but you can’t be a feminist movie if you can’t even pass the Bechdel Test. It’s a fairly low bar, and they didn’t even manage to get over that.

Even more creepy is the way the camera follows Jennifer Lawrence throughout the movie. Wearing an incredibly sheer nightgown and no underwear for much of the film, she is intentionally lit to repeatedly show off her nipples. The camera follows her from behind with more shots of her butt than a Michael Bay movie. (And can we point out that the movie would be 40 minutes shorter if it didn’t incessantly follow her movement throughout the house, padding an already ponderous picture?)

And then in the final climax of the film, she is brutally attacked, her clothing ripped, exposing her bare breasts. . .  in a rape scene. No. No. No. No. NO.

Aronofsky has publicly stated that we have been destroying our mother earth with our presence– message received. But to take it a step further to depict it on screen as an actual rape contributes to rape culture by not only seemingly glorifying/fetishizing the moment but also by lessening the impact of the epidemic of sexual assault in our country. I even bristle at the too-easy-to-make metaphor of pollution, climate change, etc “raping Mother Earth.” It doesn’t elevate a call to action, but it does lessen the impact of actual sexual assault. That being said, mother!’s final fiery apocalypse fueled by combusting oil and coal is a metaphor worth exploring– it’s just unfortunate that it is too glibly conflated with violence towards women that its impact is lessened.

It’s arguable that mother! wants to teach us something about the important place for women, but all we’re left with is a glorification of her erasure, abuse, and ultimate place as an adjunct to the man. And [spoiler alert, but IDGAF] at the end of the film, we also find out that her special, sacred role is ultimately replaceable, and she can be consumed in apocalyptic destruction and the ultimate in self-effacement and annihilation, and just as easily replaced by another woman.

Nice job, Darren Aronofsky. You took a movie about women, put your girlfriend in it, and made it all about you– the ultimate in white male “feminism.” And you bet those quotation marks are ironic.

And if you were trying to make a message about the environment, you absolutely failed– showing that our earth is completely replaceable. It isn’t. As an environmentalist myself, that implication goes beyond being problematic to dangerous.

What’s most infuriating is I really really really wanted to like this movie. It has some amazing elements in it that, if properly developed, could have made something cool. The environmental message is absolutely necessary and poignant, especially given the events of the last few weeks. A message about art and audience would have been cool. Something that was actually feminist would have been amazing. And Aronofsky’s visual sense is right on point here. He masterfully uses his setting to create an emotional response. I can name only a handful of other films that came out this year as competently shot/composed as this. (Detroit, Your Name, Get Out, Dunkirk) But someone needed to sit him down and tell him he was being self-indulgent and an idiot.

This is that Jerry Seinfeld joke that the original title for Tolstoy’s novel was War: What is it Good For? If Tolstoy had published that joke draft instead of War and Peace, we would laugh about how terrible that book is. mother! is that underdeveloped potential with an epic that deserves to be told in a more cogent fashion.

1 out of 5 stars

Sheena Queen of the Jungle Reboot in the Works

There is a Sheena Queen of the Jungle Reboot in the works through Millenium Pictures. The movie is based on the comic of the same name and the character created by Will Eisner and ‎Jerry Iger. Sheena first appeared in 1937 in British comic magazine Wags, but her real claim to fame came state side when in 1942 Sheena became the first female comic book character to have her own titled series in Fiction Comics. Just months before Wonder Woman would debut with her own title.

Sheena has been a TV series in the 50s, a film in the 80s and was rebooted again in 2000 in another series starring Gena Lee Nolin. And on August 16, the comic got a reboot through imprint Dynamite Comics with DC Comics Bombshells’ writer Marguerite Bennett, Christina Trujillo and artist Moritat.

Thank God Bennet et, al. are updating the story. In the original, Sheena was raised in the jungle, could talk to animals, had superior fighting skills and was fearless but promptly reverted to a damsel in distress the moment she met a white man for the first time. Because 1947.

So what do you think? Have you read the comic? Can Millenium take Sheena and make her into as big of a blockbuster hit as Wonder Woman? Sheena Queen of the Jungle is set to release in the summer of 2018.

RANMA ½ OVA & Movie Collection Debuts September 19th

VIZ Media is offering an exciting new home media release with the debut of the RANMA ½ OVA & Movie Collection on September 19th.

Return to the world of RANMA ½ with this unique collection based on the smash-hit manga series created by Rumiko Takahashi. The RANMA ½ OVA & Movie Collection will be released in DVD and Blu-ray editions and will include eleven episode-length Original Video Animation (OVA) adventures as well as three RANMA ½ theatrical movies.

The RANMA ½ OVA & Movie Collection Blu-ray Edition will carry an MSRP of $54.97 U.S. / $63.99 CAN, and comes packaged in a premium full-color chipboard slipcase. The three-disc set features full 1080p High Definition resolution with 16:9 video aspect ratio. Subtitled and English dubbed dialogue options are available. Bonus content includes a 24-page full-color booklet, upcoming OVA previews, and clean opening and ending segments.

The RANMA ½ OVA & Movie Collection DVD Edition will carry an MSRP of $39.99 U.S. / $52.99 CAN. The three-disc home media set presents content with 16:9 video aspect ratio and also features subtitled and English dubbed dialogue options. Notable bonus features include clean opening and ending segments.

Ranma Saotome, the iconic character created by master artist Rumiko Takahashi, is back for new adventures and more than a few hilarious misunderstandings along the way! From mishaps at a holiday party to casual use of mystical trinkets to possession by cursed dolls, what’s in store for Ranma is anyone’s guess in these original anime adventures. Also included in the new home media set are two feature-length RANMA ½ movies and one special OVA-length movie that brought Ranma to theaters to make some big choices with his heart and not his head…which is usually what starts his trouble in the first place!

Where the Data Ranks 2017’s Comic Book Films. Homecoming Gets a Big Swing

2017 feels like it’s shaping up to be a wild ride for comic adaptions. We look at who the real winners and losers are for this year’s comic films.

Spider-Man: Homecoming is the big news this week with its China debut. The film saw a massive boost that has it going from a debatable success to an actual one. The movie is now $30 million above Spider-Man film averages after getting an influx of $70.8 million from China.

Wonder Woman continues to impress and is now the fifth highest grossing superhero film domestically.

Atomic Blonde is approaching $100 million and will be a moderate success.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is making a comeback and has finally crossed the threshold so that its worldwide total is greater than its budget. Still not good, but also not a disaster of Titanic proportion.

Lets compare how the big two comic companies compare for earnings. On average DC films earn $339.3 million domestically while Marvel earns $308.3 million. Internationally, Marvel rules with $476.9 million and DC lags behind with $436.6 million. There’s still work for DC when it comes to the international film market.

Already, the year is an interesting one with three clear successes and a whole lot of mixed otherwise. Wonder Woman, Logan, Spider-Man: Homecomning, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 have done well this year, The LEGO Batman Movie and Smurfs: The Lost Village, and Atomic Blonde are in that debatable area, and ValerianWilson and Ghost in the Shell are generally disappointments. Marvel’s Inhumans… got no clue.

Here’s where this year’s comic films stand as far as the actual numbers:

Total Domestic Gross: $1.709 billion
Total International Gross: $2.398 billion
Worldwide Gross: $4.107 billion
Total Reported Budgets: $1.083 million
Total “Profit”: $3.021 billion

Average Domestic Gross: $155.4 million
Average International Gross: $239.8 million
Average: Worldwide Gross: $373.4 million
Average Budget: $108.3 million
Average Profit: $302.1 million

Below is where the films released stand when it comes to being compared to this year’s averages. Those in green are above average while those below are red.

It Floats to the Top With Record-Breaking $123 Million Opening

It had a monster of an opening with a record-setting opening that may have given some life to a anemic domestic box office.

The film had the largest September opening, largest Fall opening, largest opening for an R-rated horror film, and largest opening weekend for a horror film of any MPAA rating. The film accounted for 75% of the combined gross for the top twelve of the weekend.

On top of its $123 domestic earning, It brought in an estimated $62 million form 46 markets for a $185 million total in its first weekend.

In second place was another new film, Home Again, which earned an estimated $9 million.

The Hitman’s Bodyguard was finally bumped from first place winding up in third with an estimated $4.9 million to its total.

In fourth place was Annabelle: Creation which brought in an estimated $4 million domestically.

Finally, rounding out the top five was Wind River which earned $3.2 million domestically.

When it comes to comic movie adaptations….

Spider-Man: Homecoming held steady at #7 adding $2 million to its domestic total. The film opened in China with an estimated $70.8 million.

Wonder Woman added $662,000 to its domestic total and is now the fifth biggest superhero release of all-time.

Atomic Blonde remained at #26 adding $274,000 to its domestic total.

We’ll be back in an hour for a deeper dive into this year’s comic movie adaptations.

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