Weekend Forecast for May 22-24, 2015

By Reagen Sulewski

May 22, 2015

Still better than most of the stuff on network TV.

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The original was a masterpiece of horror and played off plastic suburban angst amidst the wave of flight from urban environments. That element isn't quite present in society 30-plus years later as people have accepted suburban life as a fact of being, but a ripping horror yarn is always still appreciated. Indeed, some of the scares in the trailer seem inspired and go right for the back of the lizard brain.

Directed by Monster House (wonder how he got the job!) and City of Ember director Gil Kenan, but possibly more important, produced by Sam Raimi, it's a likely unnecessary sequel, but one at least in good creative hands. Sam Rockwell replaces Craig T. Nelson, with Rosemarie DeWitt taking over for Jobeth Williams as the parents, while the family's children are played by unknowns. This Poltergeist doesn't even seem ready to try to replicate the fundamental strangeness of Zelda Rubenstein's exorcist, instead going to Sam Harris as a more generic paranormal investigator. This kind of thing has been done frequently recently, including the Conjuring series, Insidious, and to expand our definition a little, films like Mama. In that respect, Poltergeist has lost its specialness, particularly as a remake. Reviews are slightly better than one would think, and this may perform solidly, with about $18 million over three days, and $25 over four.

Last weekend Pitch Perfect 2 shocked the world a little with a $69 million opening, more than besting the entire domestic run of the original film, as the whole world goes a capella crazy and makes Anna Kendrick a box office powerhouse. A general dissatisfaction with the film is in the air, however, and a strong drop-off seems likely. This was going to be front-loaded anyway, but poor word-of-mouth is just going to sink it further, to around $30 million this weekend.


If there's a chance for a film to hold up well from last weekend, it's Mad Max: Fury Road, which lost the battle with $45 million, but may win the war. Its completely gonzo take on the apocalypse and the society that might arise in the Australian desert as a result is being hailed as one of the greatest action films of all time by many, or at least the last decade or so. Did those reviews drive people out to the first weekend, eliminating that effect for the most part, or are there still people that needed to be won over? Its extreme style may make it a hard sell for many even with great word-of-mouth, and I hesitate to place too much on its chances for legs. I'd say $27 million is what we're looking for this weekend.

If a film can be said to have limped towards $400 million, The Avengers: Age of Ultron might be that, as it should hit that mark by the end of this weekend. A $19 million figure should get it there, as Marvel's latest magnum opus seems headed to a figure slightly south of $500 million domestic, even as its international total climbs prodigiously (though it still trails the $1.5 billion – ye gods – of Furious 7).

Forecast: Weekend of May 22-24, 2015
Number of
Changes in Sites
from Last
Gross ($)
1 Tomorrowland N/A New 44.2
2 Pitch Perfect 2 N/A N/A 30.1
3 Mad Max: Fury Road N/A N/A 27.3
4 The Avengers: Age of Ultron N/A N/A 19.1
5 Poltergeist N/A New 18.8
6 Hot Pursuit N/A N/A 3.3
7 Furious 7 N/A N/A 2.4
8 Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 N/A N/A 2.2
9 The Age of Adeline N/A N/A 1.7
10 Home N/A N/A 1.7

Continued:       1       2



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