Good Monday Morning, Everyone.
“Safe House” won the President’s Day Weekend. But even the lure of seeing Nicholas Cage on fire in 3D wasn’t enough to put “Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance” atop the box office heap. Once again, courtesy of Box Office Mojo, here’s the weekend, by the numbers:
|TW||LW||Title (click to view)||Studio||Weekend Gross||% Change||Theater Count /Change||Average||Total Gross||Budget*||Week #|
|3||N||Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance||Sony||$22,000,000||–||3,174||–||$6,931||$22,000,000||$57||1|
|4||3||Journey 2: The Mysterious Island||WB||$20,085,000||-26.5%||3,500||+30||$5,739||$53,201,000||$79||2|
|5||N||This Means War||Fox||$17,550,000||–||3,189||–||$5,503||$19,160,000||$65||1|
|6||4||Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (in 3D)||Fox||$7,865,000||-65.0%||2,655||–||$2,962||$33,738,000||–||2|
|8||6||The Woman in Black||CBS||$6,645,000||-34.2%||2,559||-297||$2,597||$45,256,000||–||3|
|9||N||The Secret World of Arrietty||BV||$6,400,000||–||1,522||–||$4,205||$6,400,000||–||1|
With The Oscars almost upon us, New York Times film critics A.O. Scott and Mahnola Dargis take a look at an awards ceremony they describe as both trivial and essential. It’s true, really. No one ever really remembers who won Best Picture a year after the awards show is over. But, still, they are an important way of setting artistic priorities.
“The Academy Awards seem to demand more attention each year, and one way to pay attention to them is to complain about them. Oscar cynicism has become its own special form of Oscar hype, and I wonder sometimes if the whole thing — the nominating process, the heavily publicized tweaks in the rules, the dreary broadcast and the endless drudgery of the “season” — is exasperating on purpose. The louder we criticize, the more we must care.
I think that underneath all the empty pomp and hyperventilating coverage there is something worth caring about. Yes, the Academy often recognizes mediocrity and overlooks excellence. Yes, the documentary and foreign language film categories are hobbled by ridiculous rules that seem designed to exclude some of the best work. (This year’s scandalous doc omissions include “The Interrupters,” “Tabloid” and “Into the Abyss,” but that’s the subject of another rant.) Yes, the show goes on too long, with too many bad jokes and not enough moments of genuine emotion or surprise. Yes, Hollywood is a swamp of vanity, myopia and bad taste. But it is also a community of hard-working and talented people who approach this annual ritual of self-congratulation with a sincere spirit of respect for the labor of others and reverence for the traditions that bring them together.”
Read the full story here.