Weekend Wrap-Up: Turtles Topple Guardians

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles poster

Despite earning some of the worst reviews of the summer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles easily won the race for the top of the box office chart unseating Guardians of the Galaxy, which earned some of the best reviews. The rest of the new releases were well back. Overall, the box office was down from last weekend, but by less than 0.5% to $185 million. Compared to last year, the box office was 16% higher, which is a great result. Year-to-date, 2014 is still behind 2013, but the deficit was down to 4.4% or $300 million at $6.52 billion to $6.82 billion.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles opened with $65.58 million, which is a stunning total given the film's reviews and pre-release buzz, both of which were terrible. This is the fourth biggest August weekend on record, which is even more impressive since it had to deal with direct competition from the new record-holder. It is obvious that there will be another installment in the franchise, unless it bombs internationally and the merchandizing numbers are non-existent.

Guardians of the Galaxy had one of the better holds of the summer, falling 55% to $42.12 million over the weekend for a total of $176.52 million after ten days of release. Its running tally is now ahead of The Incredible Hulk on the list of The Avengers films and is just over $100,000 away from topping Captain America: The First Avenger. At this pace, $250 million is a good target to aim for.

Into the Storm also defined the critics earning third place with $17.35 million over the weekend. For a visually intensive film, it didn't cost a ton with a production budget of $50 million, so this is a fair start. It will still need good results internationally and on the home market to break even in the end, but it should get there.

The Hundred Foot Journey also opened well with $10.98 million in just 2,023 theaters for a per theater average of $5,427. That's not high enough to suggest it will expand significantly, but with good reviews and a more mature target demographic, it should have better legs than most films do and it could become a sleeper hit.

Lucy spent one more weekend in the top five with $9.49 million over the weekend for a total of $97.51 million after three weeks of release. By this time next week, it will have reached $100 million, which most people were not predicting, so the studio should be very happy with this result.

Step Up All In was the only new release that I think you can say bombed. It missed the top five landing in sixth place with $6.47 million over the weekend. Granted, it was playing in only 2,072 theaters, but this is still a disappointing start. The reviews fell to just 43% positive, but this is inline with the rest of the franchise, so it is not a matter of declining quality causing this decline at the box office. I think the franchise has just grown old.

Get on Up was the only film in the sophomore class to not remain in the top five. It fell a stunning 62% to $5.20 million over the weekend for a ten-day total of $23.11 million. I'm not sure why this happened. The reviews were good, there was no direct competition, and it was aimed at a more mature target demographic. It should have had strong legs.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2014-08-11