Look, you’re going to be seeing a lot of headlines talking up the disappointing first weekend of release for Blade Runner 2049, the long-awaited sequel to one of science-fiction cinema’s most influential movies. And yes, the numbers aren’t as strong as original projections had them at. But let’s look at this in a different way. A sequel to a 35 year old cult hit that was a flop upon release still managed to make $31.5m in its opening weekend, and that’s following a very tough Summer for Hollywood and the still overwhelming spectre of that fucking clown. It was at least enough to let the film debut at number 1 this week. International numbers will, as always, play the key role in pushing the film to a profit - I’m still surprised this film even got thr $150m budget it did, all things considered - but there’s a solid chance those strong reviews will encourage hesitant viewers to the cinema.
Elsewhere, The Mountain Between Us, the Kate Winslet-Idris Elba survival drama where they totally do it, debuted at number 2 with a soft $10m. It seemed like it was a difficult film to advertise, and a tough one to pitch to the right audience, however big or small they are. Middling reviews didn’t help either but hey, Idris Elba!
It still has the power, sitting at number 3 with an added $9.6m to their ever expanding gross. They glided past a $300m domestic profit and are on their way to getting into the top 10 highest grossing films of the year. How does this effect Bill’s Skarsgard ranking? Do we move him above Stellan now? Answers in the comments.
My Little Pony scraped together enough to hit the number 4 spot, with $8.8m from over 2500 screens. Unless you were sucking at the teat of the Minions, it’s not been a great year for animated films.
A surprise to note in this week’s top 10 is the steady rise of Victoria & Abdul Reviews haven’t been kind but that hardly seems to matter, as the film comes into its 3rd week of release and opened to an extra 655 screens, bringing its weekend gross to $4.1m. That’s 279.2% more than the previous week. Never under-estimate the power of movies your grandmother really really wants to see.
In the indie world, Sean Baker’s acclaimed drama The Florida Project premiered to a gross of over $153,000 from just 4 screens, while the legendary Agnes Varda’s latest - and possibly final - film Faces Places took in $29,807 from 5 screens. She’s going to be awarded an honourary Oscar next year, but there’s also hope this film could net her a documentary feature nomination.
You can check out the rest of the weekend box office here.
What films did you watch this weekend? How grouchy do you like your Harrison Ford? How big is the mountain between us? If you were a little pony, what little pony would you be? Answers, as always, in the comments.