The Purge is a night where all crime is legal and all hospitals, fire stations, poison control centers and police stations in the United States are closed down for 12 hours. In 2023, a year after The Purge of 2022, a couple named Shane and Liz, are driving to one of their sisterís house in Los Angeles to wait out the Purge when their car runs out of gas just as the Purge commences, and they flee from masked attackers on motorcycles and minibikes. Meanwhile, Leo Barnes goes out into the streets to get revenge on the man who killed his son, and a mother and daughter, Eva and Cali, run into the night after an unknown group of well-equipped assailants break into their tenement. The five people meet up as they attempt to survive the night.
||July 18th, 2014 (Wide) by Universal|
||October 21st, 2014 by Universal Home Entertainment|
||R for strong disturbing violence, and for language.|
(Rating bulletin 2323, 5/21/2014)
||Dystopia, Spree Killer, Gangs, Fugitive / On the Run, Home Invasion, Survivalist, Survival Horror|
|Production Method:||Live Action|
|Creative Type:||Science Fiction|
||Platinum Dunes, Blumhouse, Why Not Productions|
Like last week, it is not a very busy week on the home market. However, unlike last week, there are not a lot of prime releases. The second to last DVD / Blu-ray release for Mad Men tops the list. Well, it is the second to last release, until the Full Season Megaset comes out. The biggest theatrical release is The Purge: Anarchy, which was a huge hit, given its budget, but not a monster hit. As for the Pick of the Week contenders, it's Mad Men and Snowpiercer on DVD or Blu-ray. In the end I had to flip a coin to decide. I came up heads. Then I realized I should probably decide which movie is heads before I flipped the coin. Let's try that again. Snowpiercer is the Pick of the Week.
Guardians of the Galaxy opened in first place internationally with $67.4 million in 42 markets. This includes a number of major markets, led by Russia with $12.90 million on 2,097 screens and the U.K. with $10.70 million on 554 screens. It also earned first place in Brazil with $5.27 million on 472 screens. It wasn't as strong in South Korea with $3.83 million on 575 screens over the weekend for a total opening of $4.78 million. There was a massive local release in that market, so that partially explains that result. The film also opened in second place in Australia with $2.15 million on 244 screens, but this was just the film's previews.
There were two truly wide new releases that came out this weekend, and both of them did very well. In fact, Hercules placed second and earned as much as some people predicted Lucy would earn while placing first. Lucy topped the high end of expectations and unless its legs are really short, will easily become a surprise $100 million hit. This helped the overall box office rise 3.7% from last weekend up to $155 million, which is a pleasant surprise. Unfortunately, the weekend total was still down 10% from this weekend last year, meaning the 2014 slump continues. It has gotten so bad that 2014 is now behind 2013 by 6.1% at $6.01 billion to $6.40 billion. Next weekend should finally end the slump, but it might be too late to save 2014 overall.
There are a trio of wide releases coming out this week, sort of. The first of these, if we go alphabetically is And So It Goes, but it is only opening in 1,762 theaters, which is not quite enough to be wide and likely not enough to reach the top five. Hercules and Lucy are both opening truly wide and both are earning reviews that are currently in the overall positive level. (Although it is close enough that it might change.) Lucy will very likely come out on top, while Hercules should earn second place. There's one more film of note, The Fluffy Movie, which is opening in 400 theaters and has a slim chance at making the top ten. This weekend last year saw the release of The Wolverine, which opened with $53.11 million. There's a chance the top two films won't make that much this year. In other words, 2014 is going to lose in the year-over-year comparison yet again.
The biggest film on the per theater chart this weekend was Boyhood, for the second weekend in a row. It expanded from 5 to 34 theaters, but its average fell just 56% to $34,418. That's fantastic. It has already earned a measure of mainstream success, while it has its eyes on Chef for best limited release for the summer. Second place went to There's No Place Like Utopia with $30,710 in one theater. This is a great start, but there are still no reviews, so I think it will have short legs. A Five Star Life and Mood Indigo were relatively close with averages of $15,996 and $13,256 respectively. The only wide release to reach the $10,000 club was The Purge: Anarchy, which earned an average of $10,626.
The winners of our Total Anarchy contest were determined and they are...
As expected, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes remained on top of the box office chart with a healthy lead over The Purge: Anarchy. Unfortunately, the other two wide releases, Planes: Fire and Rescue and Sex Tape were anything but healthy and that led to a weakening box office. It fell less than 1% from last weekend to $149 million. This was 24% lower than the same weekend last year. Year-to-date, 2014 is now 5.6% or $340 million behind last year's pace at $5.79 billion to $6.13 billion. I think with summer wrapping up, it is close to the time to panic.
There are a trio of wide releases coming out this week looking to dethrone Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. The Purge: Anarchy is the most likely film to come out on top, but the original didn't win over many moviegoers. It opened big, but collapsed very quickly after that. Planes didn't perform much better with moviegoers, but there hasn't been an animated family film released wide since How to Train Your Dragon 2, so Planes: Fire and Rescue could benefit from the lack of competition. Sex Tape is the only non-sequel opening wide this week and that could help it do well. Or the fact that it is not based on a previous movie could hurt it. There is one last film that might reach the top ten, Persecuted, which is opening in 700 theaters. It would only need a per theater average of just over $4,000 to reach the top ten, which is doable. This year, we should have four films that earn more than $20 million. Last year there were only three. However, last year, The Conjuring earned more than $40 million, a milestone no film this year will reach, while seven films earned more than $10 million. This year there will be only four films earning more than $10 million. Again, it looks like 2014 is going to get crushed at the box office.
As I mentioned previously, this week's contest was delayed due to legal reasons, the details of which I don't know. I also mentioned that the contest would be based on The Purge: Anarchy, not because I think it will finish in first place, but because we have prizes for that movie. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for The Purge: Anarchy. However, while there is only one wide release, there are three prizes to give away.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a The Purge: Anarchy prize pack consisting of The Purge: Anarchy promo T-shirt and a The Purge: Anarchy promo flashlight.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will also win a Frankenprize, to make up for the contest starting late.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!
Overall, June was not good. Most films matched expectations, or came close enough that there weren't major disappointments. However, it looks like How to Train Your Dragon 2 will miss expectations by more than $100 million. This was such a massive amount that 2014 lost its lead over 2013 and not even Transformers: Age of Extinction's $100 million opening was able to turn things around. Looking forward to July, there's not a lot of good news. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes might be the only film coming out during July that will reach the $100 million milestone, but on the high end, it might reach the $200 million mark. There are a few others that have a shot, but are not favored to reach the century mark. On the other hand, there are more films that may or may not open / expand wide and even if they do, they will likely have no real impact at the box office. By comparison, last July, Despicable Me 2 was the top draw and finished with more than $350 million. There were also four other films that surpassed $100 million at the box office. It seems practically impossible for 2014 to match those numbers and will likely finish the month behind last year's pace. Overall, 2014 isn't doing poorly, but the summer has been much weaker than the spring was, so we've gone from potential record breaking year to merely average.
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