Weekend Forecast for October 23-25, 2015
By Reagen Sulewski
October 23, 2015
A veritable bevy of wide releases greets this weekend at the multiplexes, with five new films to choose from. We're still looking for the second big hit of October, though, and likely to still be looking after Monday, despite the number of choices.
We'll start with the expanding film, best of the bunch and Oscar contender Steve Jobs. Directed by Danny Boyle, it stars Michael Fassbender as the tech guru and co-founder of Apple, covering his life in a series of vignettes at various product launches and board meetings (that feels more depressing written out like that considering we're talking about a guy who died of treatable cancer, but hey...). Written by Aaron Sorkin, it continues his “Talented Jerks of the Last 50 Years” series, and shares a little bit of similarity to 2013's Jobs, the Deep Impact to this movie's Armageddon and which featured Ashton Kutcher in the lead role. *cough* Well, at least he looked more like him.
Also starring Seth Rogen as Steve Wozniak (Oh, go cry on your giant pile of money if you don't like it, Woz), Kate Winslet, Jeff Daniels and rising star Sarah Snook, it's been receiving huge praise for its acting as well as its only half-hagiographic approach showing that Jobs was maybe, just maybe, kind of a prick. Of course, this is probably half the reason he was as successful as he was, so it's certainly an interesting area to explore.
So far in two weeks of limited release, it's managed just shy of $3 million and put up some nice averages on small screen numbers, though not world-shattering. As a huge cultural figure in the last few decades, and as a person responsible for changing the way products are designed, there's undoubtedly some interest in his life. I also expect there to be a bit of pushback or disinterest from actual Apple fans, who may not want the warts and all portrait. It's a similar demographic to The Social Network, which wrenched gripping drama out of socially dysfunctional yet brilliant people. Steve Jobs may not be quite at that level of acclaim, but the pedigree should be more than enough to have people give it a chance – then it needs to sink or swim on its reputation. I'd expect an opening weekend of about $21 million.
In the list of choices for what Vin Diesel would do for his next project while they figure out what do with the Fast & Furious franchise, I think we all had “supernatural procedural” high up on our lists. The Last Witch Hunter sees him playing the title character, an immortal hunter of witches fighting an eternal battle against the forces of magic. While this exudes “John Wayne as Genghis Khan” levels of miscasting, Diesel does bring some nerd cred to the role, as his character is at least in part based on his own Dungeons & Dragons character he plays in actual gaming sessions. So, that boggling piece of trivia dispensed with, how does it look as a movie?