As you settle back into your ergonomic seats after a well-deserved long weekend, contemplating how a Tuesday morning could feel more hopeless than any Monday ever did, consider stirring some box office numbers into your coffee instead of that heaping teaspoon of rat poison. You'll thank us if you do.
1. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End—$115 million
Per God and Disney's projections, audiences gobbled up the final installment to summer 2007's Trilogy of Substandard Threequels to Movie Franchises That Have Long Since Squandered Their Creative Capital, netting Captain Jack Sparrow and the gang a (Four-Day) Memorial Weekend box office record to call their own. Even so, Buena Vista VP Chris LeRoy doesn't "like to put too much emphasis on what the opening weekend means," particularly because this opening weekend means his movie was outperformed by Spider-Man 3, Shrek the Third, and even its own predecessor, Dead Man's Chest. Still, interest in the adventures of an eyeliner-addicted pirate still grappling with his sexuality well into middle-age appears to be showing no signs of waning, and so a fourth installment, Pirates of the Caribbean: Ghosts of Jack Sparrow's Pre-Sellout Career, could very well sail into cineplexes by summer 2008.
2. Shrek the Third—$69 million
The dream is ogre: A steep, 43 percent decline in business doesn't bode well for the green monster with the bastardized Canadian brogue. Poor word of mouth could be to blame, but one mustn't discount the influence of this widely run McDonald's commercial, which helpfully reminded audiences just how annoying the Shrek world is.
3. Spider-Man 3—$18 million
Spidey and friends crawl past the $300 mil domestic mark, but the movie is a runaway hit with foreign audiences (Asians have Tophermania!), putting its total gross at just over $800 mil. No movie was ever more deserving.
4. Bug—$3.3 million
If they had just added "-Man" to the title, Lionsgate could have increased their take ten fold.
5. Waitress—$3 million
We're all for the pie-therapy espoused by Adrienne Shelly's final film. Nothing makes the pain go away like sinking one's face into a freshly baked crust, effectively blotting out the world's troubles with the smells, sounds, and textures of still-warm strawberry-rhubarb filling.