Now that the long weekend is over, box office receipts are in and, unsurprisingly, Avatar conquers yet again. But Denzel Washington can still open movies, while Peter Jackson's latest is something of a bust.
1) Avatar — $54.6 million
Why won't anyone talk about the fact that tickets for this thing are thirty dollars? It's going to pass Titanic in domestic box office (and probably international too) and everyone's all "Oh look, Avatar is the biggest thing ever, blerbbity blerbbity." But, um, this movie isn't near the phenomenon that Titanic was, is it? I mean everryyyyyyyone saw Titantic! Some of us saw it three times in the movie theater. That's not Avatar. It just isn't. The only reason it's making this much money this quickly is because to take a family of four to this thing costs eight thousand dollars. And yet no one talks about it. Because everyone wants things to be Big so they can write about them and say they were there when the biggest movie ever became the biggest movie ever. Feh.
2) The Book of Eli — $38 million
If you're thinking about a post-apocalyptic world ("a hole in the sky"!) that's all gray tones and Gary Oldman being grizzled and guns and knives and things, oh, and religion, lots of religion, the immediate person you think of is Jackie from That '70s Show, right? Yeah, me too. And this film's casting director too, apparently! Mila Kunis' big movie about the last bible in existence and a rebooting of Christianity (or whatever) did very solid business, and would easily have been the number one flick in the land by a country mile had it not been for Cameron and his damn blue cheetah people from Heaven. I swear to God (real God) that those damn azure space apes aren't going to keep us under their thumbs forever. We just won't stand for it.
3) The Lovely Bones — $20.5 million
Not so lovely! Well, perfectly good for a girly murder mystery about the mystery of a girl who was murdered. Well, it's not a mystery to us. But in the movie it is. Mark Wahlberg plays a small town Dorothy Hamill impersonator who enlists the help of a crime-solving Norma Desmond (Susan Sarandon) to investigate his fish-daughter's disappearance. But yeah, for that kind of movie twenty million is great, just great. But for a Peter Jackson picture that cost about $100 million to make? Is not so good. He just made it too... much. Read this. It says it all you need to know. Much like the bible!
4) Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel — $15 million; 5) The Spy Next Door — $13 million
Children are idiots.
6) It's Complicated — $9.1 million
So are grownups.