by Callum Petch (Screened: @jackanderson, Twitter: @CallumPetch)
The Lego Movie made $69 million. The Lego Movie, a film that is not a sequel or prequel or interquel in any pre-existing franchise, from a movie studio that had long since left the game of animated feature-length kids’ films and only really had the Lego brand to help it shift some tickets, made $69 million in its opening weekend. In February. THAT IS A HUGE F*CKING NUMBER. In fact, it’s the second biggest opening weekend in February of all-time, only behind The Passion of the Christ like so many other also infinitely better things in life than The Passion of the Christ are. Well done, everybody! I knew we could do it! Now, if even a tenth of you finally devote 13 half-hours of your life to Clone High, I won’t ask you for anything again! Maybe. Probably not.
Though The Lego Movie may be the headline, this is not to the disparagement of The Monuments Men, the second of the weekend’s big new releases, which managed to overcome a last minute move from Oscar season and disappointingly tepid reviews to score a $22 million opening for second place. Yes, that may not even be a third of The Lego Movie’s opening but consider the fact that the film managed to make its money even whilst 100% lacking in Lego Batman’s song entitled “Untitled Self Portrait” and then speculate on how much it might have made if it did include that song! Also unacceptably lacking a sequence in which Lego Shaquille O’Neal launches a basketball at an evil enemy robot was Vampire Academy, which was much to its detriment, only opening to $4.1 million. That’s a number below even that of last year’s young adult novel adaptations, The Host ($10.6 million) and Beautiful Creatures ($7.5 million), and they didn’t have to exist in a world in which an animated Lego figurine voiced by Morgan Freeman disparages the concept of the double-decker couch.
As for limited release films, supposedly in limited release because they didn’t feature a sequence in which an animated Lego cop figurine voiced by Liam Neeson holds an argument whilst literally flitting between being a good cop and a bad cop, the documentary Kids For Cash, which is about judiciary kickbacks and not your kids asking you for cash to buy Lego figurines with, did the best of the bunch with $40,800 from 4 theatres. The Last of the Unjust, a documentary about the last Jewish president of a Czechoslovakian ghetto in 1975 and not, as one might quite rightly think, a film in which a unicorn kitty displays anger issues took $14,500 from 8 theatres. And Ben Wheatley’s A Field In England, a film completely free of any kind of SPACESHIP, only managed $5,000 from 10 screens again on account of a complete and total lack of any variation of a SPACESHIP.
That being said, even despite going up against a film that has Abraham Lincoln flying away on a mechanical hover-chair, the rest of the Top 10 remarkably managed to not self implode. Ride Along overcame the obstacle of not having a sequence in which Lego water is set on fire to only drop 20% between the last two weekends, Lone Survivor overcame the obstacle of not having a Superman-fanboy-obsessed Green Lantern to best Vampire Academy, and Frozen overcame the obstacle of everybody on the godsdamn planet having already seen it at least three times by this point to add another $7 million on its quest for the mythical billion. The Nut Job, however, could not overcome a film in which a ship that speeds away has its sound effects being provided by what can best be described as a thirty-year-old man who still thinks he’s six, and promptly plummeted 50% to the arse-end of the list. Ha.
This full list hurts like hell if you step on it barefoot.
Box Office Results: Friday 7th February 2014 – Sunday 9th February 2014
|1. The Lego Movie|
$69,110,000 / NEW
My review, not that you couldn’t already guess how I feel about that film. By the way, every single gag from that film that I listed in this here article? Not even close to my top 20 actual gags from it. No, really. I can name you 20 further hysterical gags from that film off the top of my head, more than 48 hours removed from seeing the film. I can’t do that for pretty much any proper R-rated comedy I see! That’s how brilliant this film is and if you haven’t seen it, you need to go and rectify that right now. As in now. This second. Go. Cinema. Now! Mush!
|2. The Monuments Men|
$22,700,000 / NEW
Shame that this apparently sucks. Nevertheless, I’m going to reserve judgement on it until I can see it for myself when it’s released here in Blighty on Friday. Fingers crossed that Clooney can still bring the goods!
|3. Ride Along|
$9,394,000 / $105,167,000
And there goes the $100 million mark! Cos, you know, only Tyler Perry can make black-starring movies that are successf... no, wait a minute, that’s complete horsesh*t after all. I knew it!
$6,914,000 / $368,678,000
I am currently on an insane Disney kick and need something to satisfy that urge, stat! Perhaps this’ll do as, incidentally, my desire to see this film again has quadrupled ever since Sunday, where a surprise day out with my family in York led me to a Disney store and exposure to this film’s soundtrack, whilst I was buying my Nan an Eeyore plushee that she clearly wanted even despite repeatedly turning down my offer to buy it for her because she’s stubborn, reignited a burning desire to give it that second shake I’d been meaning to do for ages.
Sorry, forgot for a second that you don’t care about my private life. Moving on.
|5. That Awkward Moment|
$5,540,000 / $16,848,000
Michael B. Jordan deserves better.
|6. Lone Survivor|
$5,293,000 / $112,580,000
War children, yes. It’s just a shot away. It’s just a shot away. War children, woo. It’s just a shot away. It’s just a shot away, yay.
|7. Vampire Academy|
$4,101,000 / NEW
I’m going to see how long I can make it through this film’s trailer before I give up on life.
(starts it up)
21. I made it to 21 seconds.
|8. The Nut Job|
$3,809,000 / $55,082,000
Remember when I stated my belief that this was the ugliest animated film to come along since Foodfight!? Turns out that I made that statement a little prematurely. See, this weekend, I found out that somebody decided to make a CG Tarzan film with a ham-fisted and sledgehammer-subtle environmentalism message and aliens, for some reason. It also looks incredibly cheap and here is irrefutable evidence to prove my assertion.
|9. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit|
$3,600,000 / $44,469,000
Well, what a rather ignominious end for Jack Ryan. A film that didn’t even make its $60 million budget back domestically. And it’s yet to double its budget worldwide, too. Guess that’s another Tom Clancy franchise attempt we can cross out as a thing that will happen, then. Don’t worry, though, Hollywood! At the rate that Russia’s going, we’ll have another Cold War anytime now and then Clancy’s unique style of espionage thriller will be back in vogue again! Just hang in there!
|10. Labor Day|
$3,230,000 / $10,172,000
Well this is f*cking depressing.