End Of Watch follows two young Los Angeles police officers Taylor and Zavala as they patrol the mean streets of south central Los Angeles.
Giving the story a gripping, first-person immediacy, the action unfolds through footage from the handheld HD cameras of the police officers, gang members, surveillance cameras, and citizens caught in the line of fire to create a riveting portrait of the city's most dangerous corners, the cops who risk their lives there every day, and the price they and their families are forced to pay.
||September 21st, 2012 (Wide) by Open Road|
||January 22nd, 2013 by Universal Home Entertainment|
||R for strong violence, some disturbing images, pervasive language including sexual references, and some drug use.|
(Rating bulletin 2234, 8/1/2012)
||Filmed By a Character, Epilogue, Surprise Twist, Hispanic, Organized Crime, Gangs, Human-Trafficking, Narcotics, Beat Cops, Buddy Cop, Voiceover/Narration|
|Production Method:||Live Action|
|Creative Type:||Contemporary Fiction|
||Open Road Films, Exclusive Media Group, EFF-Hedge Fund Films, Le Grisbi, Crave Films|
There were four new releases in the top five of the DVD sales chart for the week of January 27th. However, Taken 2 was able to remain in first place with 516,000 units / $7.73 million over the week for totals of 1.68 million units / $27.55 million after two.
New releases did well on the Blu-ray sales chart for the week of January 27th, 2013. This includes End of Watch, which earned first place with 428,000 units / $9.41 million. Its opening week Blu-ray share was just a hair over 50%, which is really impressive for this type of release.
End of Watch was released in September, which is usually a terrible sign. It didn't seem like a bad movie from the trailer, and there was a lot of buzz going in, but still, that release date is usually a death sentence. Its reviews turned out to be better than expected, award-worthy, in fact. But it was only able to become a midlevel hit. Granted, it was profitable thanks to its low budget and it is one of the best runs for the studio. Will it be able to find an audience on the home market?
There are not a lot of big releases on this week's list with End of Watch being the biggest. Conveniently, it is also the best and it is the Pick of the Week on either DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack.
The Independent Spirit Awards has a special place in the Awards Season. The nominations are the unoffficial start of Awards Season, but the actual awards aren't given out until Oscar weekend, so they are the beginning at the end of Awards Season. They also help out a lot of limited releases that would otherwise not get enough buzz, although they are not so good at predicting Oscar wins. This year, two films tied for most nominations, Moonrise Kingdom and The Silver Linings Playbook, both of which earned five nominations. They weren't the only films to earn multiple nominations though.
September ended on a record-breaking note as Hotel Transylvania finally bumped Sweet Home Alabama out of top spot on the September weekend list. That record lasted a full decade, which is amazing given the total ticket price inflation since 2002. Not only did Hotel Transylvania crush predictions, Looper also did a little bit better than predicted, a tiny bit better than predicted. This is true of just about every film in the top ten, and every little bit helps. Overall, the weekend box office surged 30% from last weekend to $118 million, which was 19% higher than the same weekend last year. Let's hope this is more than a momentary blip and the beginning of a new winning streak.
There are two wide releases coming out this week that should be in a relatively close race for first place, plus an also-ran that will mostly be forgotten. Last week I thought Looper would win the weekend over Hotel Transylvania; however, that's probably not going to happen. Looper is definitely the better movie, but Hotel Transylvania is opening in more theaters than expected, while Looper is opening in less than expected. Both should do decent business, at least compared to the rest of September's new releases. On the other hand, Won't Back Down will likely struggle just to reach the top five. There's one more new release with a shot at a spot in the top ten, Pitch Perfect. It's opening in more than 300 theaters, which is a risky proposition. If it does open in the top ten, it could expand wide next weekend. I don't think it is very likely, but I'll have more to say with the limited release report. Last year there were four wide releases, but none of them cracked $10 million. The number one film was Dolphin Tale at just under $13 million. If we don't top that this year, we are in a world of trouble.
It was another terrible week at the box office with only one of the four wide releases matching pre-weekend predictions. End of Watch was able to come out on top and it was only the second time an Open Road release was able to do that. The rest of the films ranged from a little disappointing to, 'Please don't make me talk about this; it's depressing.' The overall box office rose by 5.1% from last week to $90, but that's a staggering 23% lower than the same weekend last year. Yes, year-to-date, 2012 is still ahead of 2011, but its lead continues to shrink reaching just 2.5% at $7.92 billion to $7.73 billion. Ticket sales are just 1.3% higher than last year's pace and the upcoming releases don't seem particularly strong, so by the end of October, we could officially be in trouble.
This weekend there are four wide releases, which is too many. The odds are at least one, more likely two films will miss reaching their full potential. That's under normal circumstances. The box office is clearly sub-normal at the moment. The widest release of the week is Trouble with the Curve, but its Tomatometer Score has fallen from close to 90% to barely more than 60%. At this pace, by the time the weekend starts, it will be below the overall positive level. House at the End of the Street has good buzz, but still no reviews, and that is troubling. Dredd's reviews are shockingly good, but the film has had trouble escaping the remake stink. Finally, End of Watch is also earning great reviews, but its studio has a really bad track record at the box office. By comparison, last year there were four wide releases, none of which earned more than $20 million; however, three of them did earn more than $10 million and the fourth came close, while The Lion King won the weekend with more than $20 million. I think it will be another loss for 2012 in the year-over-year comparison. It likely won't be close.
August is over and let's just be glad we never have to talk about that month again. It is too early to tell how a couple of the wide releases from the month will do, but of the other fourteen we have solid numbers for, none of them were a pleasant surprise. There were a few that were mildly disappointing, but likely still profitable. There were also a few that were "What were they thinking?" level of box office bomb. This September, there about a dozen films opening wide, depending on your definition of wide. (Plus, For A Good Time, Call might expand wide on the 14th, while The Master is opening in limited release on the 14th, but might expand wide before the end of the month. "Might" is the key here. I don't think either will get it done.) None of the dozen films are likely to get to $100 million. In fact, there's a good chance no film opening this month will get to $75 million in total. The biggest film of the month could be Finding Nemo, which is getting a 3D Re-release. As long as the movie going public hasn't tired of 3D re-releases, it should be a hit, but there are signs that the trend might be ending soon. There are a few others that should become midlevel hits, but most will struggle to find an audience. Last September was not terrible with one $100 million film and a few other midlevel hits. For 2012 to come out ahead, it will have to rely on depth, and I'm more than a little worried in that regard.
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