Weekend Forecast for September 28-30, 2012
By Reagen Sulewski
September 28, 2012
Won't Back Down is the latest entry in the People Fighting the System genre, and stars Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis as two mothers determined to turn around their inner-city school, which they believe is failing their children's education. They'll do this by forming their own school! With hookers and blackjack! Wait, no.
While education is certainly a hot-button issue, this film appears to be a pretty formulaic take on the topic, and could very well be a semi-fictionalized version of Waiting for Superman, the documentary that Walden Media also produced, just like this one. Walden has been another production company like Summit, which has struggled to market its films effectively, and has had few real quality films to market. This is not one of those, as reviews have been tough on it for being one-sided and TV-movie quality. While Gyllenhaal and Davis are both quality actors, neither is a box office draw and I believe we're looking at a tiny $4 million opening weekend.
Of last weekend's four new films, three threw darts at the $12 and $13 million spots on the board and hit. End of Watch was a mild surprise as the ultimate winner with just over $13 million. The Jake Gyllenhaal cop drama prevailed on the strength of its stylish film techniques and an apparent demand to see Gyllenhaal in uniform. These type of genre films typically fall off pretty quickly, so it should be at around $7 million this weekend.
Usually dropping even faster is horror, so House at the End of the Street should fall to around $5 million after a decent $12 million start. Really, this is all gravy, considering this was a film that was rescued thanks to the sudden fame of its lead, Jennifer Lawrence.
Trouble With the Curve is arguably the most disappointing of these films, given that it stars an actual film legend in Clint Eastwood. Of course, lately he's only been a draw in his own films, and he doesn't threaten to shoot anyone in this one. However, thanks to its sports and family reconciliation themes, this stands the best chance of holding over well of the films at the top of the box office last weekend. I'd look for $7 million here as well.
While the Finding Nemo re-release is fairly literally “more of the same” when it comes to 3D revamps, it does have some significance in moving the film up the all time charts, and it's reentered the top 20 all-time mid-week. There's a small chance that it could reach the $400 million mark once it's done, and would be only the second Pixar film to reach that milestone. Expect a lot of this type of shuffling in the next few years as studios mine their back catalogs.