It's official. Nothing good is happening in movie theaters anywhere. I know that this time of year is usually a slump time in general but that doesn't mean we have to just put out whatever garbage Hollywood can come up with just to keep those ticket sales rollin'. We have, for your pleasure this weekend, two "meh" movies hitting screens: "Oz the Great and Powerful" and "Dead Man Down". It seems to be another week to pay where, if you want to go to theaters, you'll simply have to pay your $7.50 and shut off your brain for a while! So let's get crackin' on those hot details!
"Oz the Great and Powerful" seems about the same amount of standard as "Jack the Giant Slayer" to me. I know this movie will probably do pretty well in the box office so I honestly can't criticize them from a business standpoint here, and I won't, but let's start with common empathy or faith in the human race. Does this movie not look like Tim Burton's uninspired sequel to Alice in Wonderland? An atmosphere of CG landscapes that are tailor made for 3D using by a director that I know can figure out something better to do! Whatever...on the plus side I will say that doing this movie probably made it possible for Raimi to produce the new "Evil Dead" remake hitting us next month. The movie has a 64% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes right now, which gives me hope in some ways. Honestly I'm throwing out a skip on this guy but if you need to see it for nostalgic reasons or just plain straight-up boredom, then go for it. I don't expect much more than some flash CG sequences, but it could end up being an acceptable look into the world of Oz.
"Dead Man Down" looks to me like it could be a fine watch for the most part, but I still don't think its going to break any huge ground or anything. And I'm not saying that I always need a movie to break new ground, but sometimes I just want a couple of neurons in my brain to flicker...just once or twice. I am not for or against this movie in any way honestly, It just landed its own self right on the fence. It seems like it could be a fine little crime thriller piece to fill your afternoon though, so hit it up if you need something like that in your life. There are no reviews in yet on RT, so it's hard to gage much more of a response at the moment, but we all know that films which usually hold out until their release date have certain marketing reasons for doing so...
On the box office side of things, "Oz the Great and Powerful" will be the big winner, the only question left is by how much. I've seen predictions and estimates everywhere from $40MM to $90MM. My guess is that it lands somewhere in the middle though, right around $70MM. That feels high, but maybe there are more people interested in this film than I believe. Also, it's not like there's much other competition to get in its way. Regardless, it should grab the highest opening weekend so far for 2013. he other new release this weekend, "Dead Man Down", probably won't find a huge audience, and I honestly can't see it surpassing even the $10MM mark. And the only other film that will make more than $10MM this weekend will be "Jack the Giant Slayer", which made $27MM last weekend in its debut. It was met with poor reviews and made even less than many expected, so it was due for a large drop this weekend as it was. But then you tack on that "Oz the Great and Powerful" is so similar; I'm not sure there will be many people out there opting for Jack over Oz.
Soon I promise there will be something good to actually report in the movie world. We are going to be breaking into the summer season in just a month or two here so just sit tight and try to hold out until then. As always, if you see any of the films above, let me know about it on the comment section below! Have fun and be safe moviegoers!