Title Weekend Gross % Change Total Gross Estimated Budget Week
Saw 3D $22,500,000 $24,200,000 $20 1
Paranormal Activity 2 $16,500,000 -59.40% $65,658,000 $3 2
Red $10,811,000 -28.10% $58,905,000 $58 3
Jackass 3-D $8,425,000 -60.50% $101,578,000 $20 3
Hereafter $6,320,000 -47.40% $22,161,000 $50 3
Secretariat $5,071,000 -27.60% $44,774,000 $35 4
The Social Network $4,700,000 -35.40% $79,706,000 $50 5
Life as We Know It $4,000,000 -34.80% $43,478,000 $38 4
The Town $1,950,000 -29.10% $87,602,000 $37 7
Conviction $1,825,000 502.00% $2,378,000 $12.5 3

Estimated numbers via Box Office Mojo

Thanks to one of the worst box office weekends of the year and a lack of new wide release competition, I suppose Saw 3D can have bragging rights with its estimated $22.5 million. I’m sure Lionsgate is probably pleased the 7th and supposedly last entry in the tired franchise bettered the dismal $14.1 opening performance of last year’s Saw VI, but keep in mind that Saw 3D‘s $20 million estimated budget nearly doubles the amount spent on the last film and even the inflated 3D prices landed it the third worst opening in the franchise.

Shedding more than 59% of its audience from last weekend, Paranormal Activity 2 isn’t going to be quite the phenomenon that the first film was, but an estimated $65.7 million and counting for a film budgeted at $3 million is a big success. Among the other carryovers, Red, Secretariat, The Social Network, Life as We Know It and The Town continue to hold strong with no film losing more than 35.4% of its audience. On the other hand is a film I’ve been keeping an eye on since it opened: Clint Eastwood’s Hereafter. With a 47.4% drop from last weekend, it’s pretty clear the film will likely wind up much closer to Changeling‘s $35.7 million than Mystic River‘s $90.1 million.

There wasn’t much action in limited release this weekend, but The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, the third film in Stieg Larsson’s Millenium Trilogy rode its 153 theater opening to $915,000, the highest launch of the series. I don’t expect it to match the $10 million lifetime of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, but it’s well in line for the $7.6 million grossed by The Girl Who Played With Fire.

11 Responses to “The Halloween Watercooler”

  1. I continue to be saddened at how many people waste their money on the Saw films. Even now, I could see Lionsgate deciding to go back to the well once more. I did get out to the theater, but to see something I’ve seen twice and mostly just for kicks: Inception. I was mostly curious to see how the movie would hold up after having seen it the weekend it opened.

    I loved the movie the first two times, and didn’t change at all this time. While the movie lacks what The Dark Knight had (the flamboyance and brio of Heath Ledger’s performance), it’s got great performances, complex (for summer movies) ideas, and I still think the final 90 minutes of the movie pay off so well that it’s hard for me to see any other movie topping it for sheer ambition and entertainment.

    Today, I finally got around to seeing Winter’s Bone on Blu-ray. Jennifer Lawrence is excellent in the film, but John Hawkes amazed me as much, especially in his showdown with the local sheriff (and as a Deadwood fan, I got a kick out of seeing Hawkes and Garret Dillahunt share some time). I don’t think the overall film is as impressive as the performances, but I liked it a lot.

  2. Didn’t get into a theater this week but I did catch the BBC mini-series Dead Set on IFC and the premiere of the Walking Dead on AMC. While not as odious these days as the vampire craze, the zombie genre has become so commonplace that even soccer moms think the undead are cute. So against my better judgment I tuned in to Dead Set, where the British version of Big Brother becomes the setting for a zombie apocalypse. Clearly based on the original Dawn of the Dead, this dark satire of our modern reality TV culture was engaging enough to reward my effort. It certainly pulled no punches.

    And I admit I didn’t think Frank Darabont could pull it off, but AMC’s The Walking Dead looks to be the single-best TV series to debut this year.

    I also managed to watch the first two parts of Carlos earlier in the week and those did not disappoint. Looking forward to the finale.

  3. I watched two films on DVD: first was The Informant, which I enjoyed a lot, and second was The Thing, which was excellent. Was my first time to see both. I usually avoid any kind of horror films because my imagination goes into overactive mode and gives me terrible nightmares. Of these two films though? The one that actually gave me nightmares was The Informant. That sick sense of digging yourself deeper and deeper into a pit of lies, lit by office light and in a labyrinth of cubicles. Scary!

    The Walking Dead is good? I wouldn’t have bet on that. May have to add that to the DVR to test Joel’s recommendation.

    John Hawkes is perfect as Teardrop in Winter’s Bone. I hope he gets remembered come awards season. He should at least be in those conversations.

  4. jennybee, The Walking Dead was very, very good (and I usually strongly dislike or hate horror movies). The critics who’ve watched ahead aren’t as taken with the next episode, but the pilot was really well-done in every aspect.

  5. JB: The Walking Dead pilot was excellent, not sure how the series will hold up. The source material has kept engrossing me with each new trade collection of issues, but I have a lot of criticisms of the writing. But if the pilot is indicative of the series, then they will simply write around the short-comings of Robert Kirkman’s narrative style. Haven’t seen the entire cast in action yet and the “southern” accents leave something to be desired, but it was much better than I expected.

  6. Wow, AMC killed with TWD premiere (no pun intended): 5.4 million households tuned in for the three staggered airings, which is impressive for cable television. It will be interesting to see if they hold the majority of that or lose a whopping number of viewers after the first three episodes.

    They’re catering to a huge untapped audience on TV but you have to wonder if something as dark and unsexy as this material will hold viewers. BSG had to rely on the sexbot Cylon a lot in their first two seasons to balance the unrelenting darkness. I don’t think TWD can pull off a sexy zombie.

  7. I streamed stuff on Netflix and watched TCM this weekend. Since it was Halloween weekend the theme was horror/creepy/gothic. Movies streamed from Netflix included: M (one of my favorites of all time), Carnival of Souls (one of my favorite cult classics with some truly creepy moments), the masterful Audition and finally Bergman’s surreal and eerie Hour of the Wolf. On Sunday night TCM showed the original House on Haunted Hill (what’s Halloween without a Vincent Price B horror movie?) and the excellent The Haunting (the original with Julie Harris).

    One of these days I’ll actually get to a movie theater.

  8. Sorry I’m late to the Watercooler party.

    Josh, I’m happy to hear you give a shout out to John Hawkes in Winter’s Bone. Yeah, Jennifer Lawrence is worthy of the buzz, but his part is so important and he’s so different from any other time I’ve seen him. He’s terrific. And creepy.

    I’m a bit higher on the film than you were though. At the time I saw it, I was expecting something stark and depressing and I was shocked to find out it’s essentially a thriller. Shocked in a good way.

    Jennybee. “That sick sense of digging yourself deeper and deeper into a pit of lies, lit by office light and in a labyrinth of cubicles.” the story of my life! kidding. I liked The Informant the first time around, but I think I need to see it in to fully grasp whether it’s brilliant or not. The raw material is there but it just didn’t quite click for me 100% I have a feeling it will improve with age. Also. Matt Damon is just great.

    Joel, I’ll be curious to hear what you think of the last episode of Carlos. From what I’ve read elsewhere it’s the least popular of the three, but I thought it was exactly what it needed to be.

    Walking Dead hasn’t shown up on my PS3 yet so I haven’t seen it. It’s on my list though.

    Alison, I’ve been almost exclusively streaming Netflix when it comes to home video watching. My streaming queue has more in it than my DVD queue, though usually I’ll just kind of search around without anything in mind and popping in whatever catches my eye. It’s like a movie candy store. Love it. Funny because I ALMOST watched Hour of the Wolf too when I was hunting up some Halloweeny type films.

    Instead I watched the well reviewed House of the Devil from last year. I liked it for what it was, but ultimately was kind of disappointed. Far better than most of the horror I’ve seen in the last few years (which admittedly isn’t much), but the long build up never really amounted to much. Still. Good cast and a nice creepy, semi-suspenseful tone.

    Also tried to watch Tony Scott’s The Hunger. I’ve always hated Tony Scott but gave him credit for The Hunger, True Romance and to a lesser extent Crimson Tide. Turns out The Hunger is dreadfully dull. I think I hate it and I hate Tony Scott even more for hating it. True Romance is still great, but that’s more to do with Tarantino. Scott sucks and I have to say I’m not too crazy about his artier brother either outside of Alien and Blade Runner.

    Instead of The Hunger I watched Coppola’s Dracula which is still a lot of fun in spite of Keanu Reeves. A fun over the top Gary Oldman performance and an Anthony Hopkins who is more engaged than we’ve seen him in a decade at least.

  9. The best thing about The Hunger is David Bowie is in it. :D

  10. David Bowie is never a bad thing, but my admiration for him isn’t enough to make me sit through The Hunger an more than the celebrity lesbianism.

  11. Finally finished Carlos and I really enjoyed the series as a whole. Assayas seems as interested in the contradictions and contrasts to our modern world as he is with Carlos the man, who is a rather pathetic figure compared to the fearsome mythos he helps the media create. Assayas doesn’t hesitate to portray him as much more than a rowdy opportunist, which goes equally for everyone Carlos does business with as well. They are all exploiting each other for power, wealth, and status with their various political causes just acting as an excuse for their existence.

    Great film. It depicts not only how the inaccurate the myth can become, but how easily the idealistic revolutionary can be controlled and manipulated by those in power.

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