Holmes & Watson Box Office Prediction

If you thought Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law’s take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s sleuthing characters was a little silly, wait till you get a load of Holmes & Watson next week. The comedy casts Will Ferrell as Holmes and John C. Reilly as Watson with Etan Cohen (who worked with Ferrell in Get Hard) directs with a supporting cast including Rebecca Hall, Ralph Fiennes, Kelly Macdonald, Lauren Lapkus, and Hugh Laurie.

Ferrell and Reilly have, of course, headlined two hits from the previous decade – Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby and Step Brothers. Ironically, the maker of both of them (Adam McKay) has Vice debuting directly against this.

Technically this is the two principles fourth collaboration since Reilly had a cameo in Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues. This opens Christmas Day, which means it’s out on Tuesday. Movies generally perform strangely during the holiday frame. Previous films that have opened when 12/25 falls on Tuesday can see their Tuesday-Thursday gross match or even exceed the Friday-Sunday.

I expect that to occur here with Holmes getting close to lower double digits in the latter part of its six-day. That could mean low 20s for the first week run.

Holmes & Watson opening weekend prediction: $11.3 million (Friday to Sunday); $22.3 million (Tuesday to Sunday)

For my Vice prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2018/12/19/vice-box-office-prediction/

Night School Box Office Prediction

**Blogger’s Update (09/27/18): My estimate has risen to $27.6 million to $31.6 million

One of the most dependable comedic actors at the box office teams with one of the hottest newer names when Night School opens next weekend. Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish headline the pic about a group trying to pass their GED exam. Malcolm D. Lee (who just directed Haddish in her breakout Girls Trip) is behind the camera. The supporting cast includes Rob Riggle, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Taran Killam, Romany Malco, and Keith David.

Hart has been a model of consistency in recent years when it comes to high earners. In addition to just coming off the massive blockbuster Jumanji Welcome to the Jungle, he’s had a handful of $30 million plus openers including Think Like a Man, both Ride Along features, Get Hard, and Central Intelligence. The Think Like a Man sequel almost reached $30 million while About Last Night made $25.6 million for its start. The low-end of the spectrum is The Wedding Ringer with $20.6 million. As for Lee and Haddish’s Trip, it took in $31.2 million.

The collaboration of these talents should yield pleasing results and the likely #1 spot over its made competitor – the animated Smallfoot. I’m a little skeptical this reaches $30 million, though it certainly could. A gross in the mid to high 20s seems more probable.

Night School opening weekend prediction: $31.6 million

For my Smallfoot prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2018/09/18/smallfoot-box-office-prediction/

For my Hell Fest prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2018/09/20/hell-fest-box-office-prediction/

The House Box Office Prediction

Blogger’s Note (06/29): On eve of debut, revising estimate against to $13.8 million

Bloggers’s Note (06/27): Revising estimate to $18.3M from $22.3M

Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler are a married couple who start up an illegal gambling establishment to pay for their daughter’s college in The House next weekend. It’s the directorial debut of Andrew J. Cohen, writer of the Neighbors pics and Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates. Costars include Ryan Simpkins, Jason Mantzoukas, Nick Kroll, and Jeremy Renner.

As far as leading roles go, Ferrell has had a good run lately as Get Hard and Daddy’s Home both debuted in the mid to high 30s range. The former had the benefit of costarring Kevin Hart. The latter benefited from a Christmas release. I don’t see The House reaching those numbers and I see it more likely to be in range (perhaps a bit less) with Ferrell’s The Campaign, which opened to $26 million five summers ago.

Considering its relatively low $40 million reported budget and if it receives decent buzz, this should be a nice size hit for Warner Bros.

The House opening weekend prediction: $13.8 million

For my Despicable Me 3 prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2017/06/21/despicable-me-3-box-office-prediction/

For my Baby Driver prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2017/06/21/baby-driver-box-office-prediction/

For my The Beguiled prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2017/06/26/the-beguiled-box-office-prediction/

Central Intelligence Movie Review

Central Intelligence is not bad, which is more than you can say with some scripts that Kevin Hart has been saddled with over the last few years. From Ride Along (both of them) to The Wedding Ringer to Get Hard, the talented Mr. Hart has not seen much material that rises above the strictly mediocre. With a worthy comedic partner in Dwayne Johnson that he has an easy chemistry with, Intelligence may not be very intelligent but it’s got its share of genuinely amusing moments due to their partnership.

The film begins in 1996 when the two stars are high school seniors. Hart is Calvin. He’s the star athlete, resident heralded drama thespian, and runaway Most Likely to Succeed. Johnson is Robbie, whose figure is anything but rock solid. He’s bullied mercilessly by his fellow students and Calvin is the only guy who seems to show him any mercy.

Flash forward two decades as the two are up for the 20 year reunion. Calvin has become a bored accountant in a dead end job, still married somewhat unhappily to his high school sweetheart (Danielle Nicolet). Robbie is now the blandly named Bob Stone,  complete with a physique befitting the actor portraying him. He’s now in the CIA and being accused of being a rogue agent trying to sell secrets to the highest bidder.

What follows is a routine buddy flick where Bob/Robbie and Calvin must team up while chased by people who may or may not be bad guys. Amy Ryan gets the change of pace role of the government agency head pursuing them and Aaron Paul pops up as Robbie’s former partner. The threadbare plot of Central Intelligence is ho-hum at best, but it’s also not what it’s centrally about.

The pic rises and falls on the interaction between the leads and there’s some good stuff to be witnessed. Johnson has already proven his sense of humor (he seems well aware that his character in the Fast & Furious franchise is supposed to be funny). We also have some messages written in about bullying that’s presented slightly better than you might expect in this type of material. There’s some unexpected cameos from other well known comedy actors that are welcome. Director Rawson Marshall Thurber had a hit in 2013 with We’re the Millers, which I enjoyed. That effort had the benefit of hilarious supporting work from Nick Offerman and Kathryn Hahn and a whacky villain role for Ed Helms that accentuated the proceedings beyond its main stars. Central Intelligence doesn’t have that, but at least the two names above the title help deliver something a bit more worthy of their talents.

**1/2 (out of four)

Get Hard Movie Review

Get Hard is a limp premise that wastes the pairing of two talented stars of the genre in a sea of dated jokes. In this film’s world, gay and racial humor is displayed in full force and the writers seem to believe it’s edgy just because it exists on the page and its high profile performers are saying the lines. It doesn’t connect and the result is a pic that will soon be easily forgotten on both Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart’s resumes.

James King (Ferrell) is a hedge fund manager who’s engaged to his boss’s (Craig T. Nelson) materialistic and cliched money grubbing daughter (Alison Brie). Darnell (Hart) runs the car wash business that services King’s building. When King is wrongfully convicted of embezzlement, he enlists Darnell to help him cope with his upcoming ten year stint at San Quentin. You see, King assumes Darnell has done hard time because… well, he’s black and he believes statistically there’s a likelihood of it. When Darnell is promised $30,000 to assist with King’s request, he is perfectly OK with misleading him.

This sets up elaborate scenes in which Darnell simulates prison riots and instructs King on how to stand up for himself. Mostly it involves advice on how not to get raped in the joint. Lots and lots of jokes about it, which are all stale. The filmmakers even go as far as putting King in a situation where he must learn to, um, service a man should he have to. It’s more uncomfortable than funny. Like the entire idea of this venture.

Get Hard is not anywhere close to as dangerous as it wants to be. It must waste some of its running time investigating who really is behind the crimes King is charged with and that part is dull. The rest of the way is gay joke, racial joke, gay joke, racial joke. Mixed in occasionally is tired commentary on how corporate America contains the real bad guys, a thread also common in much more rewarding Ferrell fare like The Other Guys and The Campaign. Even what purports to be the pic’s comedic highlights, like Ferrell accidentally getting injured by a weapon, only reminded me of when he did it better like in Old School. And let’s face it – how many times have we already seen Will use his naked body as a punchline? It’s here too! The main side effect of taking the journey to Get Hard in this case is absence of laughter.

*1/2 (out of four)

Box Office Predictions: April 17-19

Three new films open in wide release with two other rather high-profile entries debuting in more limited release. The trio of newbies going wide are the Kevin James sequel Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2, horror pic Unfriended, and Disney nature documentary Monkey Kingdom. You can review my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/04/11/paul-blart-mall-cop-2-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/04/12/unfriended-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/04/12/monkey-kingdom-box-office-prediction/

Blart would love to replicate the $31 million debut accomplished by its predecessor in 2009. If it manages that, it would definitely challenge the third weekend of juggernaut Furious 7 for the top spot. However, that seems unlikely and James appears poised for the runner-up position.

Unfriended certainly has the potential for a robust opening (many horror flicks over perform), but I have it only posting so-so numbers. Monkey Kingdom will be lucky to break into the top five and my prediction has it not accomplishing that kind of business.

As for holdovers, Furious should three-peat at the top while the four and five spots should be filled by Home and The Longest Ride.

Outside of the top five, the spy thriller Child 44 with Tom Hardy and Gary Oldman rolls out on only about 800 screens while the crime drama True Story with James Franco and Jonah Hill premieres in approximately 550 venues. Due to their low number of screens, their openings should be fairly minor and I didn’t bother to do individual posts about them. I’ll say Child 44 earns $2.1 million while True Story makes $3.7 million.

And with that, my top six predictions for the weekend:

1. Furious 7

Predicted Gross: $30.4 million (representing a drop of 49%)

2. Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2

Predicted Gross: $21.4 million

3. Unfriended

Predicted Gross: $12.6 million

4. Home

Predicted Gross: $12.3 million (representing a drop of 34%)

5. The Longest Ride

Predicted Gross: $7 million (representing a drop of 46%)

6. Monkey Kingdom Predicted Gross: $5.9 million

Box Office Results (April 10-12)

As expected, Furious 7 easily topped the charts in weekend #2 with $59.5 million, just above my $56.5M estimate. The blockbuster has amassed an amazing $251 million in just ten days and is likely to rule the entire month of April at the top spot.

Dreamworks animated Home continued its solid run with $18.5 million in its third weekend, topping my $15.3M projection. Its made $129 million so far.

The Nicholas Sparks adapted romantic drama The Longest Ride had a middling premiere with $13 million, close to my $12.2M prediction. With no star power, it struggled a bit to reach its target audience.

Get Hard was fourth with $8.2 million (compared to my $6.1M prediction). The Will Ferrell/Kevin Hart teaming has earned $70 million at press time. The five spot belonged to Cinderella with $7.1 million, in line with my $7.3M projection and its total stands at $180M.

Elsewhere down the chart, the Helen Mirren/Ryan Reynolds drama Woman in Gold expanded its theater count for a respectable 7th place showing at $5.4 million.

And that’ll do it for now, folks! Until next time…

Box Office Predictions: April 10-12

Only one newcomer is going against the second weekend of Furious 7 as the romantic drama The Longest Ride debuts, based on the Nicholas Sparks bestseller. You can find my detailed prediction post on it right here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/04/04/the-longest-ride-box-office-prediction/

I will readily admit that Ride has the potential to open bigger than my prediction. My estimate comes from the belief it will barely outdo the last Sparks adaptation, The Best of Me, which underwhelmed in its performance last year. Still, it could also serve as shrewd counter programming to Furious 7. As predicted, however, I have it landing in third.

There is no doubt that Furious will easily repeat at #1 after its massive and record setting debut this past weekend (more on that below). It’s sure to suffer a healthy decline in weekend #2, but little else could be expected after opening so big.

I have the animated Home remaining #2, though it could find itself in a close race with Ride. As for the rest of the top five, I have Cinderella remaining in fourth, as it should suffer a smaller decline than Get Hard.

And with that, my top five predictions for the weekend:

1. Furious 7

Predicted Gross: $56.5 million (representing a drop of 61%)

2. Home

Predicted Gross: $15.3 million (representing a drop of 43%)

3. The Longest Ride

Predicted Gross: $12.2 million

4. Cinderella

Predicted Gross: $7.3 million (representing a drop of 37%)

5. Get Hard

Predicted Gross: $6.1 million (representing a drop of 54%)

Box Office Results (April 3-5)

The seventh edition of the Fast and Furious franchise raced into the history books with the heftiest April opening in box office history with an astounding $147.1 million, speeding beyond my $117.4M prediction. That is good for the ninth largest premiere of all time. The series has been on an incredible hot streak lately. Paul Walker’s final screen appearance also may have added a curiosity factor for some.

Dropping to second was Home in weekend #2 with $27 million, a bit below my $29.3M estimate. The Dreamworks animated tale has done well so far with $95 million in the bank.

The critically panned Will Ferrell/Kevin Hart comedy suffered a big drop in its sophomore frame with $13.1 million, under my $15.4M prediction. It’s earned $57 million and is highly unlikely to reach the century mark.

Cinderella was fourth with $10.1 million, on target with my $9.8M projection. The Disney live-action adaptation stands at $167M. Insurgent was fifth as it also grossed $10.1 million (just under my $10.9M prediction). Its three-week total is at $103M and it will surely gross less than its predecessor Divergent. 

That’s all for now, folks! Until next time…