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Weekend Wrap-Up: Dumb Leaves the Competition Smarting

November 18th, 2014

Dumb and Dumber To poster

There was some good news and bad news over the weekend. The good news was Dumb and Dumber To, which managed a stronger than expected opening, despite its reviews. The bad news was Beyond the Lights, which couldn't turn its reviews into box office success. That said, the good outweighed the bad and overall the box office was quite strong. It was still down 11% from last weekend to $140 million, but that's still 12% more than the same weekend last year. 2014 remains behind 2013's pace by 3.4% or $310 million at $8.72 billion to $9.03 billion, but every little victory will help soften the blow at the end of the year.

Dumb and Dumber To opened in first place with $36.11 million, which is more than double the opening of the original Dumb and Dumber. Dumb and Dumber To also had 20 years of inflation to work with, so this is a much weaker opening. Speaking of much weaker, its reviews settled down at a mere 26% positive. That's bad, even for low expectations cinema and will likely negatively affect its legs. Then again, it cost just $40 million to make and it should earn double that domestically. If it can merely match that figure internationally, then it could break even before the home market. The Farrelly Brothers might not have impressed critics, but they have their biggest hit in over a decade.

Big Hero 6 matched expectations (nearly) perfectly with $34.66 million over the weekend for a ten-day total of $110.31 million. By comparison, Wreck-It Ralph earned $33.01 million during its sophomore stint for a two-week total of $93.65 million. It did hold on better, but as long as Big Hero 6 gets a similar bounce over Thanksgiving, it should cross $200 million before it is done. There is reason to be cautious. Granted, its reviews are stunning, but Thanksgiving also introduces direct competition.

Interstellar held on a little better than expected with $28.31 million over the weekend for a total of $96.93 million so far. It will reach $100 million shortly. In fact, it might have already crossed that milestone by the time you read this story. It will become the fifth film in Christopher Nolan's directing career to reach that milestone, but it will still be seen as a disappointment by many. The curse of high expectations.

Speaking of disappointments, Beyond the Lights only managed $6.20 million during its opening weekend, despite earning 84% positive reviews. This is well below the low end of expectations and it is very hard to find any positives to focus on. It did only cost $7 million to make, but it likely cost nearly twice that for its P&A budget, so unless it is a surprise hit on the home market, it won't break even any time soon.

Gone Girl has spend a month and a half in the top five, this weekend earning $4.56 million over the weekend for a running tally of $152.64 million. The film was a relatively expensive movie to make, but it has already broken even, when you take into account its international numbers.

One last note: The Maze Runner became the 25th film released in 2014 to reach the century mark. It isn't the only film in theaters that will reach $100 million. Not only is Interstellar possibly seconds away from hitting $100 million, but The Equalizer is slowly but surely getting there as well.


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Filed under: Weekend Box Office, The Equalizer, Interstellar, The Maze Runner, Big Hero 6, Gone Girl, Dumb and Dumber To, Beyond the Lights, Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly, Christopher Nolan