Ooft, what a bad weekend for the box office. It was the Super Bowl weekend so this slump was predicted, but I don’t think it being this weak was entirely inevitable. If you give people something to watch that they want to see, generally speaking, they’ll make the effort to do so. But nope, the crowds just weren’t feeling it for Argylle or the biggest new release of the weekend, Lisa Frankenstein.
Let’s start with Argylle. Matthew Vaughn’s spy comedy didn’t have a brilliant opening weekend and was written off as a flop almost immediately (that reported budget of $200m+ did not help.) In its second week of release, it managed to hold onto the top spot but it only grossed $6.5 million, a 62.8% drop from its already minor opening. Worldwide, its total gross is only around $60 million. Apple took a big hit with this one.
Zelda Williams and Diablo Cody’s horror comedy Lisa Frankenstein stumbled with only $3.8 million from 3,144 theatres. The reviews were weak, and audience interest simply wasn’t there. This one felt like a February dump release from the get-go, sadly.
Out of Darkness, at number 12, is a British thriller that premiered over here about a year ago. Bleeker Street Media got it into 897 theatres and grossed just over $1 million. The French drama The Taste of Things, which was the country’s entry for the Best International Feature category at the Oscars, earned an impressive $126,015 from only three venues. Wim Wenders’ Perfect Days, which is Japan’s entrant in the International Feature category (as well as a nominee), brought in $100237 from five cinemas.
Harmony Korine is back. His latest film is Aggro Dr1ft, which the internet tells me is an experimental film about a melancholic assassin that stars Travis Scott. So, standardHarmony Korine stuff. It opened to $46,300. The documentary Ennio, focused on the legendary composer Ennio Morricone, earned $7,434 from one place.
One of the more interesting parts of a quiet weekend at the box office is the presence of Turning Red, the delightful Pixar film that initially premiered on Disney+ due to lockdown-related schedule wrangling. The movie was a critical hit and Oscar nominee, but like many of its contemporary brethren, it could have benefitted from being a traditional release rather than a streaming exclusive. Clearly, Disney feels the same way because now it’s giving those movies their day in cinemas. Don’t expect $100 million payouts for this, but it is good business to re-establish such works as cinematic fare rather than the thing you just wait for on Disney+. Turning Red played in 1,560 theatres and made a solid $535,000.
This coming week sees the release of the musical biopic Bob Marley: One Love and the superhero movie Madame Web.
You can check out the rest of the weekend box office here.