It was the
battle between the two remakes of 80’s movies and one was the clear winner.
What was no
surprise was that The Lego Movie was No. 1 again on this weekend’s box office chart.
The film simply works and goes far beyond what would be considered to be a children’s
movie. With a dropoff of just 29% the film looks like it will eventually hit $300 million, equaling the take of Disney/Pixar’s animated film Up, and could potentially become
one of the highest grossing animated films of 2014.
But the surprise, which was actually no surprise, is that the About
Last Night remake, which grossed $27 million this weekend easily beat out
that hyped up Robocop remake which
was originally projected to make some $40 million and fell way short of the mark
with $21 million.
But who didn’t
see that coming? First of all, what rom-com doesn’t do well around Valentine
Day when a lot of couples (or rather women dragging their handcuffed men
kicking and screaming, who would rather have 18 inch needles through their
eyeballs than suffer watching a romantic comedy) are in the mood for a romantic
Also Kevin Hart is about as hot as anyone
can get. So hot that people will practically show up for anything he’s in, which
poses two big challenges for him. One is to keep from being overexposed… Well. O.K. so maybe he’s pretty much failed on that point.
But the second is
to try to find interesting projects that use his best qualities and avoid
making schlock, because they’re paying you a gargantuan paycheck, which has been
the downfall of many a film comic. (I don’t need to mention any names do I?)
I still don’t
find him funny though…
But who didn’t
see that that Robocop film wasn’t going to do what some people thought. How
could anyone improve on the 1987 original, one of the best films made during the
1980s? A darkly comic, savage and hyper
violent action thriller, but also a clever satire that attacks the corrosive nature
of capitalism and throws in some heavy religoius allegory to boot.
And the even
more amazing thing is that the film and director Paul Verhoeven did it all so brilliantly. (And the even more violent
sequel Robocop 2 directed by Empire
Strikes Back’s Irvin Kershner is definitely
a worthwhile movie).
So then how was a bowdlerized, tame PG-13 remake made for 12 year olds, with none of the
original’s satiric political and social commentary was going to be any good or even remotely interesting?
Like that disastrous 2012 PG-13 remake
of Verhoeven’s definitely R rated Total Recall. Just leave Verhoeven’s films
alone, make up something original and get a life.
The other major relase this weekend, Winter’s Tale, suffered from terrible reviews and just tanked at the box office, once again asking the question, why do they keep trying to make Colin Farrell into a movie star when nothing works, like that Total Recall remake he starred in?
Yet George Clooney’s The Monuments Men, despite equally bad reviews, held up petty well, with over $43.6 million to date, and could wind up being a solid, but not a huge hit for Sony, though the overseas box office for the film will help its total box office greatly.