Sunday September 20, 2015
Box Office: 'Maze Runner' Doesn't Get Lost, 'Black Mass' Doesn't Kill, 'Captive' Doesn't Break Out
“Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials,” the second in the “Maze Runner” series, won the weekend with a $30 million domestic haul. That almost guarantees a $100 million run ($30 mil+ opening wknd generally equals $100 mil+ overall domestic gross), but it's still $2 mil less than what the first “Maze Runner” grossed a year ago. The series is not exactly lighting the teen world on fire. It's the red-headed stepchild of YA/high-school-clique dystopias.
“Black Mass,” the rather lifeless retelling of the White Berger saga starring Johnny Depp, finished second with $23 mil.
Other openers: “Everest finished in fifth place in only 545 theaters—a lot of those IMAX. It earned $7.5 for a $13K average. (The movie's recommended, btw. P and I saw it yesterday.) But the highest per-theater average belonged to ”Sicario,“ which opened in six theaters and grossed $390K, or $65K per theater. According to Brad Brevert at Box Office Mojo, that's the highest per-theater-average so far this year. It's just ahead of ”Ex Machina“ ($59K per in four theaters) and ”While We Were Young“ ($56K in four theaters).
Then there's ”Captive,“ which I'd barely heard about, and which seems like a suspect topic to me. It's based upon the horrific Brian Nichols shootings in Atlanta in 2005 in which, in the middle of trial, Nichols overpowered a sheriff's deputy and killed a judge, court reporter and police officer. He then took a woman hostage in her home but she talked him down, and back into police custody, with religious teachings. That's why it was made, I assume, and why it was written by Brian Bird (”Touched by an Angel“) and directed by Jerry Jameson (”Walker: Texas Ranger,“ ”Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman“ and ”Murder She Wrote,“ among others). But critics weren't impressed (36% on RT) and it died at the box office: 806 theaters, $1.4 million, $1.7K per theater.
Of the return flights, M. Night's ”The Visit“ dropped 55% for $11.3 million and third place; ”The Perfect Guy“ dropped 62% for $9.6 million and fourth place; and ”War Room“ dropped only 19% for $6.2 million and sixth place.
The rest of the top 10 were filled with the third weekend of ”A Walk in the Woods,“ the eighth weekend of ”Mission: Impossible,“ the sixth weekend of ”Straight Outta Compton“ and the fifth weekend (but first to appear in more than 1,000+ theaters) for Lily Tomlin's ”Grandma.“ For the year, ”Mission“ is at $191 mil ($656 worldwide) and ”Compton“ is at $158 ($183 worldwide).
Hang tight, kids. Nearly through with September.
Kate Mara in ”Captive": trying to escape into a better movie? Or simply get out of September?