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January 19, 2009 |

By Dustin Rowles | Box Office Round-Ups | January 19, 2009 |

Before we get started with today’s box-office round-up, you may have noticed that it’s arriving a little later in the day than usual. After a few requests, we’ve decided to alter our publishing schedule slightly in order to appease our West Coast readers. We’re shifting the day forward by 2 hours, so Cannonball Read will kick us off each morning at 10, and we’ll post two hours later than we usually do each evening.

And now on to the weekend’s top five:

5. Hotel for Dogs ($17 million): I must watch the wrong channels — until a few days ago, I’d never even heard of this film, and I probably never would have had I no need to assign the review (sorry, AB). A family film with Don Cheadle, Kevin Dillon and Lisa Kudrow? What the … ? It also stars Emma Roberts, who turns 18 in two weeks. Ahh, the untalented relatives of famous actresses do grow up quickly, don’t they? Agent Bedhead will have the review tomorrow, but if you’re honestly trying to decide whether or not to see it, this image from the movie should offer a hint:


4. Notorious ($21.5 million): Sean Combs produced the film, so it’s not too big a surprise, I suppose, that Pliffy is played by Derek Luke (Antwone Fisher, Friday Night Lights), while Biggie is played by a nobody. Biggie may have died, but Poopsie’s ego apparently has not.

Prisco will have the review up this afternoon.

3. My Bloody Valentine 3D ($21.9 million): As I mentioned in the review, I totally dug the Real 3D of My Bloody Valentine and I’m fairly stoked that this is the future of film. But, if you use that Real 3D on a legitimately terrifying flick (and not just a hilariously gory one), you’re going to see your fair share of fainting theatergoers.

And speaking of, did y’all hear that at Sundance over the weekend (and no, we’re not attending this year, choosing SXSW, instead), two people fainted during a screening of a film called Grace. What kind of film is freaky-terrifying enough to elicit faints? Well, I don’t know if the actual film is any good, but the premise is a brain-spook. It’s about a woman whose child dies in the womb after a car accident, but she decides to carry the stillborn child to term, anyway. Miraculously, the baby comes out alive. Well, not alive. But not dead, either. The baby apparently has the thirst for blood. I think we’re talking baby vampire zombie, y’all. I’m officially sad we opted against Sundance now. It’s probably warmer in Salt Lake City that it is in New England, anyway. Damnit.

2. Gran Torino ($22 million; $73 million): Did you know that Clint Eastwood is one of only three living directors who have directed two Best Picture winners? Feh. I got nothing.

1. Paul Blart: Mall Cop ($33.8 million): I love Roger Ebert, but the man gave Paul Blart three stars, mostly because it wasn’t gratuitously profane. “”It’s as slam-bang preposterous as any R-rated comedy you can name. It’s just that Paul Blart and the film’s other characters don’t feel the need to use the f-word as the building block of every sentence.” Fuck that. Paul Blart actually could’ve used a little goddamn profanity. Also a script, a decent cast, and a director with actual brain function.

I had so much promise for the new year when Gran Torino took the top spot in its first weekend with new releases. Paul Blart scoring $33 million pretty much annihilated that hope.

Random: What would a zombie with diabeetus be like?

The Weekly Box-Office Round-Up / Dustin Rowles

Box Office Round-Ups | January 19, 2009 |

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.

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