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Ten 2011 Box Office Failures That Briefly Redeemed Our Faith in Humanity

By Dustin Rowles | Box Office Round-Ups | December 11, 2011 |

By Dustin Rowles | Box Office Round-Ups | December 11, 2011 |

This weekend’s box office report contains both good news and bad. The bad news is that New Year’s Eve was the number one movie at the box office. The good news is that New Year’s Eve was a massive failure, raking in only $13 million. SUCK IT KOOTCHER. Contrast that to the opening day of Valentine’s Day ($56 million) and the only conclusion I can draw is this: Audiences have wizened up to the romantic comedy celebrity dump. By God, it takes more than Sofie Vergara’s rack and Lea Michelle’s annoying face to pull in an audience. Moviegoing audiences will no doubt disappoint me next week, but for a few days, the failure of New Year’s Eve and the knowledge that Rick Perry’s homophobic campaign ad is the most disliked video of all time on YouTube has restored my faith. Thank you, America. And thank you also for ignoring in droves this year four bad remakes, a sexist revenge fantasy, a dull Tom Hanks/Julia Roberts romantic comedy, Sarah Jessica Parker and Anne Hathaway’s latest dreary efforts, the one about moon rocks with spider legs and, of course, the mentally crippled Adam Sandler protege.

Here are the 10 box-office failures that briefly redeemed our faith in humanity this year.

10. Sucker Punch: $36 million

9. Larry Crowne: $35 million

8. Arthur: $33 million

7. Conan the Barbarian: $21.2 million

6. The Three Musketeers: $20.2 million

5. Apollo 18: $17.6 million

4. One Day: $13.8 million

3. Straw Dogs: $10.3 million

2. I Don’t Know How She Does It: $9.6 million

1. Bucky Larson: How to Be a Star: $2.5 million

New Year’s Eve was not the only warranted failure this weekend at the box office: Jonah Hill’s middling unofficial Adventures in Babysitting remake also struck out with audiences, only mustering a measly $10 million, the worst out of Jonah Hill’s career (at least where he was a major player). That doesn’t bode well for that 21 Jump Street movie, does it? Suck it, Skinny Boy.

I hate to dampen all the good news in the round-up this week, but sadly in at number three, Breaking Dawn Part I made $7.9 million and is now the year’s third biggest movie, behind Harry Potter and Transformers 3. Moreover, while The Muppets decline is leveling off, it’s $7.1 million puts it at a mere $65 million overall, when it should be the movie that made $260 million, instead of Twilight: Womb Shredder. WHERE IS YOUR GOD NOW, TIM TEBOW?

In limited release, both Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Young Adult scored big with audiences, raking in $75,000 and $40,000 per screen, respectively, which bodes well for their nation-wide releases over the course of December. Likewise, The Descendants opened wide this weekend and added $4.5 million to bring the Oscar contender to $23 million. The news wasn’t as good for Michael Fassbender’s Shame, which added 11 theaters (from 10 to 21) and nevertheless shed 21 percent of its box-office gross over last week. I suppose all that Fasschlong curiosity was front-loaded at the box office.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

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