“Straight Outta Compton” (Universal) provided a late summer climax, opening to a far above expectations $24 million Friday (including Thursday night shows). A fitting coda to the studio’s amazing summer (and year), the origin story of N.W.A.’s rise in the 1990s provided more than half of the Top Ten total for the day, and lifted what has been a desultory August so far to 13% over the same weekend last year.
“The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” (Warner Bros.), representing the more typical studio attempt to revitalize a past project that might have international appeal, showed vastly different results. Its take of just under $4.9 million placed it only third for the day, just below the third weekend of “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” (Paramount). Tom Cruise’s latest — looking especially good among several late-season disappointments — fell 40% from last Friday and is at $126 million so far.
At the other end of performance is “Fantastic Four” (20th Century Fox), which collapsed from its weak opening to manage only $2.4 million and fourth place. With foreign results only slightly better, the poor holdover confirms that this is a rare Marvel-character flop, and proves yet again that Marvel knows best.
Two other second-week films with older appeal had modest results and signs of lack of great word of mouth. “The Gift” (STX) dropped a bit more than half from its opening day with $1.9 million and fifth place, while Sony added 400 theaters to the Meryl Streep vehicle “Ricki and the Flash,” grossing just over $1.3 million but only ninth (its per theater average was less than half of last Friday).
The rest of the holdovers were tightly grouped, with “Ant-Man” (Buena Vista) and “Vacation” (Warner Bros.) virtually tied for sixth just over $1.5 million. Two other Universal hits round out the list, with “Minions” in eighth with $1.4 million and “Trainwreck” tenth with $1.2 million.