Because the month of April is literally ending with a big-time whimper, I’m not going to spend too much time talking about the new wide releases, because frankly, I don’t see either of them doing much business or having much interest.
The time-spanning period drama The Age of Adaline (Summit/Lionsgate), starring Blake Lively as a woman who remains 29 years old for eight decades, has a similar WTF factor as romantic dramas like Richard Curtis’ About Time, The Time Traveler’s Wife and even The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Directed by Lee Toland Krieger and co-starring Harrison Ford, there’s a chance that some older women into period dramas may check it out, but there’s nothing to date that shows Blake Lively to be an actor that can put people in seats and the late April release is a concern. With a crazy wide release (projected at 2,900 theaters) it could probably bring in some business, maybe between $6 and 8 million, but this doesn’t seem like anything people have been waiting impatiently to see.
Similarly, the faith-based period drama Little Boy (Open Road) from Bella director Alejandro Monteverde, is only notable because it’s getting a fairly wide release by Open Road into 2,200 theaters. The best it can do for star power are Tom Wilkinson and a small uncharacteristic dramatic role for Kevin James. The coming-of-age tale of a boy whose father (Michael Rapaport) has been captured in a Japanese POW camp during WWII and the Japanese man he befriends harks back to the 2001 drama Hearts in Atlantis, starring Anthony Hopkins, but the movie just doesn’t have much promotion and is definitely getting dumped. The wider release and PG rating will probably help it make between $3 and 4 million, but it won’t hold much interest beyond older folk unless there’s a big push towards the faith-based crowd that I don’t know about.
The most promising movie of the weekend is in fact the wide expansion of Alex Garland’s sci-fi thriller Ex Machina (A24), starring Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson and Alicia Vikander, although not having a definitive theater count at the time of this writing makes it hard to determine how big a push it can get into the Top 10, but reviews and buzz have been great and its has had a decent platform release so far. Number of theaters will determine whether it gets into the Top 10 or ends up just outside.
This Weekend Last Year
The Cameron Diaz comedy The Other Woman (20th Century Fox), co-starring Leslie Mann and Kate Upton, topped the box office with $24.76 million as it brought in the oft-neglected female audience. Even though it would gross $83 million, the movie’s success still didn’t do much for Diaz’s summer comedy Sex Tape a few months later. The late Paul Walker’s action flick Brick Mansions (Relativity), a remake of the French film District B13, opened in 2,647 theaters to the tune of $9.5 million, enough for fifth place, while the horror movie The Quiet Ones (Lionsgate) tanked with just $3.9 million in 2,027 for seventh place. The Top 10 grossed $97 million and there’s no way this weekend’s offerings can come even close as Furious 7 and Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 will remain atop the box office.
This Week’s Updated Predictions
Update: While Furious 7 should still win the weekend with ease, things have changed with the solidification of the theater counts with The Age of Adeline and Ex Machina getting far more than originally projected and Little Boy getting significantly left, so that moves the first two up and the latter one down.
No big deal, just a little sequel called Avengers: Age of Ultron (Marvel Studios/Disney)! It should make some money and sometime before then, we should also have our annual Summer Box Office Preview.
This Week’s Must-Sees
Adult Beginners(RADiUS-TWC) Director: Ross Katz Stars: Nick Kroll, Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale, Joel McHale, Bobby Moynihan, Mike Birbiglia, Josh Charles, Jane Krakowski Genre: Comedy What It’s About: Comedian Nick Kroll plays Jake, an entrepeneur who loses all the money for his start-up company, forcing him to return to his childhood home in New Rochelle to live with his sister (Rose Byrne), her husband (Bobby Cannavale) and their three-year-old son, who Jake agrees to watch while they’re at work. Opening in select cities and On Demand.
The Forger(Lionsgate) Director: Philip Martin Stars: John Travolta, Tye Sheridan, Christopher Plummer, Marcus Thomas, Jennifer Ehle, Abigail Spencer, Travis Aaron Wade, Lyndon Smith, Anson Mount Genre: Crime, Drama What It’s About: Ray Cutter (John Travolta) is a master art forger who has agreed to a deal with a drug kingpin (Anson Mount) in order to get out of jail early to spend time with his teen son Will (Tye Sheridan), who has cancer. As he tries to reconnect with his son, Ray gets pulled into a brazen art heist that requires the help of his father (Christopher Plummer) and best friend. Opening in select cities and On Demand.
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck(HBO Documentaries) Director: Brett Morgen Stars: Kurt Cobain, Courtney Love, Chris Novoselic Genre: Documentary What It’s About: The director of The Kid Stays in the Picture and Chicago 10 tells Kurt Cobain’s story through his own journal entries, home movies and low-budget recordings from his days in high school through his marriage to Courtney Love and leading up to his suicide death in 1994. It opens in select cities in New York, L.A. and Seattle on Friday before its HBO premiere on May 4.
Interview with Brett Morgen (Coming Soon!)
Misery Loves Comedy(Tribeca Film) Director: Kevin Pollak Stars: Andy Richter, Jon Favreau, Lisa Kudrow, Richard Kind, Paul Feig, Jim Norton, Michael Ian Black, David Wain, Penn Jillette, Christopher Guest, Jason Reitman, Jim Gaffigan, Richard Lewis, Marc Maron, Rob Delaney, Chris Hardwick, Opie & Anthony, Bob Saget, Alan Zweibel Genre: Documentary What It’s About: Comedian/podcaster Kevin Pollak is one of three actors making directorial debuts this weekend as he assembled some of the comedy greats to talk about their road to making people laugh. Following its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and a special screening at the Tribeca Film Festival, Pollak’s movie will get a limited release with VOD on Friday.
Other Limited Releases of Note:
The Water Diviner(Warner Bros.) Director: Russell Crowe Stars: Russell Crowe, Olga Kurylenko, Jai Courtney, Ryan Corr, Yilmaz Erdogan, Cem Yilmaz, Steve Bastoni Genre: Drama What It’s About: Russell Crowe makes his directorial debut with this war drama set after World War I battle of Gallipoli in Turkey when an Australian farmer (Crowe) travels to Istanbul to look for his sons who were declared missing in action. Once there, he strikes up a relationship with a Turkish woman (Kurylenko) as he searches for them.
Kung Fu Killer Director: Teddy Chen Stars: Donnie Yen, Charlie Young, Wang Baoqiang, Michelle Bai, Christine Chen, Deep Ng Genre: Action, Thriller What It’s About: Donnie Yen is a kung fu master called upon to take down a serial killer targeting other martial arts masters.
Just Before I Go(Anchor Bay) Director: Courtney Cox Stars: Seann Willian Scott, Missi Pyle, David Arquette, Kate Walsh, Olivia Thirlby, Evan Ross, Rob Riggle, Kyle Gallner, Garrett Dillahunt Genre: Comedy, Drama What It’s About: “Friends” star Courteney Cox makes her directorial debut with this dramedy starring Seann William Scott as Ted Morgan, a man ready to end his life until he returns home to visit his family who somehow gives him a reason to live. (I saw this movie over a year ago at the Tribeca Film Festival and it was pretty awful, although I guess that doesn’t matter these days as distributors will find a way to give anything a release these days.)
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