1) A Nightmare on Elm Street — $32.5m
Does this mean that Jackie Earle Haley is a movie star now? I mean, he's on all the posters! Sure Connie Britton's in the movie and so are a girl from the new Melrose Place and that hunky underpants-vampire from Twiddles, but they're not really stars (though Britton should be). Haley was in Shutter Island this year too, and Watchmen a little while back. And he has an Oscar nomination. So with this big opening weekend, let's just say that Jackie Earle Haley, the weird looking kid from Bad News Bears, is a big, big star. Only in America!
2) How to Train Your Dragon — $10.8m
Man, people just want to see this movie. It barely drops week to week, and has now earned almost $200m domestically. I don't know. I still think people are training their dragon too much. Call me a stick in the mud or a tradionalist or something, but there's just something unhealthy about kids training their dragons as often as this movie seems to teach and encourage them to. This bad trend all started some years ago with Pete's Dragon, which taught kids that instead of being fearsome, danger-spewing demons, their dragons were friendly and useful. Just not a good lesson, I don't think. I just really don't.
4) The Back-Up Plan — $7.2m
Hey look at that! After a lousy-ish first weekend, this movie didn't plummet, exactly. So, silver lining. I'm sure this both enrages and vindicates known movie critic muppet Sandy Kenyon. Have you seen his back-of-the-taxi review of this flick? He is sooo in love with Jennifer Lopez and so mad at everyone else in the movie for dragging her down. It is very hilarious! I think he uses the phrase "Jennifer Lopez has It," it meaning big-time star quality. Which, uh, maybe back in the Out of Sight days, when she was actually cool and sexy? That was way before "If You Want My Love" and Glow and all that unpleasantness. So anyway, this ought to make Kenyon happy. But he will probably be mad that hated nobodies like Alex O'Loughlin are being vaguely rewarded for dimming the light of the precious Lopez. And he has a point there. Who the hell is Alex O'Loughlin? It shoulda been Kenyon in that picture!
6) Furry Vengeance — $6.5m
Oh dear. While Fraser has had luck in the past with family-friendly fare, he appears to be on his inevitable downturn. Vengeance joins failures like Monkeybone and Inkheart in the "embarrassing things that Brendan Fraser has done" filing cabinet. Oh, and throw The Mummy 3 in there, too. This picture looked to be the worst one yet, as it's essentially about Brendan Fraser and Brooke Shields getting pooped on by animals for two hours. The director had to say "Aaannd... cue animal poop" so many times. So very many times. I wonder if poor Fraser would go sit in his trailer between takes and listen to the clock ticking and wonder what went wrong. What did go wrong? Was it George of the Jungle? Was that the beginning of the end? Maybe Monkeybone, Inkheart, and Furry Vengeance are just all terrible titles. His next movie should be called Tits Monster. That might be too adult though. Maybe Candy Farts or Your Principal Falls Down for Two Hours. That'd get the kids interested, probably. Hope you're listening, Fraser.
8) Kick-Ass — $4.4m
I finally saw this and I must say I liked it way more than I thought I would. Sure there were annoying parts — Nicolas Cage yelling "Chillllld" over and over again, for example, though that was less annoying and more deeply unsettling in a "Oh, now I'm worried about him" kind of way. But on the whole it was clever and interesting to look at and, remarkably, featured a likable performance from the lead kid. I didn't even mind Christopher Mintz-Plasse, who can be kind of sad in his post-Superbad McLovin' milkin'. Everyone did a nice job. Except for Mr. Cage, who really needs to be looked at. Has anyone actually checked up on him lately? And I don't mean just calling his to offer him movie roles. Like, has anyone asked him how he's doing? I don't think anyone has, not for a long, long time. And that troubles me. Chilllld.