There are some interesting things happening at the box office right now.
Last weekend, Ralph did more than break the internet, he broke the box office, too. “Ralph Breaks the Internet” opened over the five-day Thanksgiving weekend with $84.5 million domestically, the second biggest five-day Thanksgiving gross of all time.
“Creed II,” the latest film in the “Rocky” franchise and the follow-up to 2015’s “Creed,” also flexed its muscles to open with $55.8 million, the largest holiday opening ever for a live-action film. Starring Michael B. Jordan, Sylvester Stallone and Tessa Thompson, the film pits Adonis Creed against Viktor Drago, the son of Ivan Drago from “Rocky IV,” who killed Adonis’ father, Apollo, in the boxing ring. We can probably expect more “Creed” films in the series now with this kind of success.
Overall, it was the biggest Thanksgiving movie weekend in history, with BoxOfficeMojo.com reporting that the top 12 films made more than $206 million combined.
But while there were some triumphs there were also some duds.
The newest incarnation of “Robin Hood,” starring Taron Egerton and Jamie Foxx, turned out to not be so merry. It’s actually 2018’s biggest bomb yet, making only $14 million over the five-day period with a budget of about $100 million. Ouch! Poor reviews certainly didn’t help (the film’s Rotten Tomatoes score is a paltry 17 percent out of 100).
The feel-good road trip movie “Green Book,” also opened wide over Thanksgiving weekend, and it looked like it was going to be a rousing crowd pleaser, with strong early reviews, an audience award from the prestigious Toronto Film Festival and heavy awards buzz.
The film, starring Viggo Mortensen as a bouncer hired to be the driver of an African-American classical pianist (Mahershala Ali) on a tour of venues through the 1960s American South, failed to make a connection, though, only making about $7.3 million over the five-day period. That’s a pretty lukewarm reception given its buzz, but things aren’t over yet for the film, and projected awards nominations may help its visibility.
The next really big high-profile opening will be “Aquaman” on Dec.. 21. To say that Warner Bros. and DC Comics have a lot riding on this would be like saying Atlantis is just a tiny sea town. Jason Momoa stars as the fish king, who finally gets his own movie after first popping up (briefly) in the dour “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.”
With a budget of about $160 million (not including marketing), the film will have to be a gargantuan hit to make any money.
But all that aside, fan anticipation is high, and very early word is actually really positive.
News personality Jenna Bush tweeted that “#Aquaman was an absolute blast, from the charm of Momoa’s Arthur Curry, to the spectacular visuals to the fun that it was clear that everyone was having. It was exactly what I was hoping for and I can’t wait to see it again!”
Fan site IGN’s Tom Jorgensen tweeted that “Aquaman” “is the best DC movie since The Dark Knight. @creepypuppet delivers a swashbuckling epic full of big emotion, gorgeous undersea visuals, exciting action, and lots of laughs.”
Erik Davis, the managing editor of Fandango, tweeted that the film “is the most ambitious DC movie to date — a big, sprawling visual spectacle that is gorgeous, crazy, stuffed with terrific action, and a lot of fun to watch. James Wan, in my opinion, is the true star - he elevates the material, makes it entertaining and conquers it.”
Actual critic reviews of “Aquaman” are embargoed until Dec. 11. But it’s good to hear some early praise.