Canada's answer to a question nobody asked has rolled out his big superhero picture and it's not quite a hit. Meanwhile, another Canadian, name of Jim Carrey, isn't faring so well either.
1) The Green Lantern — $52.7M
Uh oh. While fifty-two million dollars might seem like a lot of money (because it is, it is an absurd amount of money, more than the combined income of many generations of many families), for a summah soopahero feetchah that cost $200 million (more than I make in a year) to make, it is not a great sum. Foreign box office could still prove lucrative, but domestically this could be the summer's first sorta flop. (As, smugly, I predicted it would be.) Why did this happen? Have people finally tired of Ryan Reynolds' cold Canadian celery stalk-ism? (Think about it. If you could turn Ryan Reynolds into an animal, vegetable, or mineral, you would turn him into celery, wouldn't you? He's total celery.) I don't know. It might be Ryan Reynolds' fault. He might not be ready for primetime, now or ever. It might also be the "Whatthefuck?" factor. Meaning, whatthefuck is the Green who? Nobody knows. "He makes magic light things with his magic light ring? I don't... No." What do lanterns have to do with anything? (Also: What's a lantern? This is 2011. I don't want to churn butter.) I just think that this was DC being all sad and desperate because their brother Marvel is sooo much cooler and has so many more characters. Next summer DC will throw up its hands and say "Um, we have the Fart Hammer. They've never done a Fart Hammer movie. Oh, and what about the Blue Tea Cozy? Everyone loves the Blue Tea Cozy. 'Brightest Earl Grey, darkest Oolong.' Big stuff." Poor DC. So yeah, maybe this isn't Ryan Reynolds' cock-up. Maybe it's just that nobody likes the Green what are you asking me to watch? The Green why? I don't even know what you're talking about. Stop talking to me, movie.
2) Super 8 — $21M
This movie — about DC Comics' famed Super 8, a group featuring such notable superheroes as the Steel Grifter, Fashion-Man, and the Red Weep — held on nicely in its second week of release, perhaps indicating that the thing is getting positive word-of-mouth and could survive this movie-choked summertime season with its dignity intact. Which is good! It's good for everyone. It's good for J.J. Abrams. It's good for Kyle Chandler. And it's good for the Super 8. It's good for Clobber-Woman. And for the Amazing Fondler. And for the Purple Discharge.
3) Mr. Popper's Penguins — $18.2M
This movie, about a gay explorer in
Antarctica, did just OK. A million years ago, Jim Carrey used to be a box office guarantee, on the level of few others. I mean, remember Liar Liar? Do you remember how you saw that in the theater and laughed and laughed and laughed, because he couldn't lie anymore? (A conceit that movie pulled off far better than The Invention of Lying, which was just about a world where everyone was horribly rude to one another for no reason.) Jim Carrey used to be huge! Like, crawling out of a hippopotamus' butt huge! But now, a million years later, he's just the weird dude running around with the penguins. Doing his sad dance with the penguins, hoping we'll throw fish (and money) at him. And some of us did. But a lot more of us didn't. Ah well. Time keeps drifting by, I suppose. Tides change and whatnot. The sun burns on.
8) Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides — $6.2M
This movie has done decently in the US ($220 million), but has done gonzo good biz overseas. (On other tides, if not stranger ones.) In fact, it's become Disney's highest-grossing movie on the international market ever. It's made like almost a billion dollars. Increasingly, foreign box office is accounting for the majority of Hollywood receipts. So maybe they should start only releasing these movies overseas and leaving us real Earthlings, the only ones that really matter, alone. Pirates of the Caribbean: Don't Tell the Americans. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Fucker Lives in France Anyway. Things like that. They'd do really well, Disney would be happy, and all of us regular people here would be none the wiser, eating our steaks while driving our Chevys and shooting our guns and winning prom queen in peace.
14) The Art of Getting By — $700K
With an anemic $1,100 per screen, this indie about a Different teen boy in the city who meets a Different girl and they have a Different kind of romance did worse than other indies about Different teen boys in the city who meet Different girls and they have Different kinds of romances. I mean, Igby Goes Down was what, like a million years ago? Jim Carrey was still a huge movie star? And that did better. Or at least I imagine it did better. That movie sort of invented this modern genre. (I mean obviously Catcher in the Rye, but whatever. Live in the now, man.) And it was good. But now, a million years later? I hate these movies. I hate them so much for all their bizarre classicist, sexist bullshit. So I'm glad this movie did badly. I'm honestly glad. May it and its ilk drown in the seas of time forever. Honestly.