Released four years ago, horror pic The Boy managed to gross its budget in the first three days of release. Even though audiences and critics were generally unimpressed, we now have the sequel Brahms: The Boy II out next weekend. William Brent Bell is back in the director’s chair with Katie Holmes in the lead. Costars include Ralph Ineson and Owain Yeoman.
Originally slated for last summer and then December, Brahms looks to cater to fright fest fans who have shunned their offerings thus far in 2020. The Grudge opened to $11.4 million and that middling number was a high point. The Turning followed with $6.9 million and then Gretel & Hansel with $6.1 million.
The Boy made $10.8 million for its start in January 2016 with an eventual $35 million domestic gross. I just don’t see much anticipation for the follow-up and will predict it begins with just over half of its predecessor’s number. For horror enthusiasts, it looks like the following weekend’s The Invisible Man will be the first genre success of the year. Don’t count on Brahms to be much of one.
Brahms: The Boy II opening weekend prediction: $5.5 million
For my The Call of the Wild prediction, click here:
Orion Pictures hopes horror fans turn out next weekend with the release of TheProdigy. The fright fest casts “Orange Is the New Black” star Taylor Schilling as a mom who thinks her young son might be possessed by a demon. Jackson Robert Scott, most known as Georgie (the kid who got his arm ripped off by Pennywise in It), plays the boy. Nicholas McCarthy directs.
As has been said many times on this blog, this genre always has the possibility to surprise with a larger than anticipated opening. There’s no direct competition for horror watchers, but there’s three other pics debuting that should all premiere with bigger numbers (TheLegoMovie2: TheSecondPart, WhatMenWant, ColdPursuit).
The studio would be fortunate to see a rollout like 2016’s TheBoy, which managed nearly $11 million for its start. I don’t see it happening and I’ll project it makes a bit over half that figure.
TheProdigy opening weekend prediction: $6.1 million
For my TheLegoMovie2: TheSecondPart prediction, click here:
Horror fans get their first taste of the genre in 2017 as The Bye Bye Man hits theaters next weekend. The low-budget flick finds a group of college students tormented by the title character (Doug Jones). Costars include Douglas Smith, Cressida Bonas, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Faye Dunaway.
Made for just $6 million, Bye Bye is likely to turn a profit no matter what. Scary movies are notoriously tough to predict (they over perform more often than not), yet I’m not sure this will conjure up much business. It could perform similarly to last January’s The Boy, which opened to $10.8M. Bye Bye will have the four-day MLK weekend to try and reach double digits, but I’ll predict it falls just short of that (still managing to easily top its price tag out of the gate).
The Bye Bye Man opening weekend prediction: $8.8 million
When the U.S. of A did the whole creepy doll comes to life thing nearly three decades ago, it was in the form of a foul mouthed, sarcastic lil freak named Chucky in Child’sPlay. In this U.K. set version of a similar concept titled TheBoy, we have a significantly more mild mannered and seriously less verbose porcelain doll that goes by the name of Brahms. The 1988 doll comes to life experience knew it was trashy fun. This 2016 experience is a little too mild in its approach to its concept… even dull from time to time, if you will. There’s some nice little creepy moments, but far fewer than there should be.
William Brent Bell’s movie intoroduces us to Greta (Lauren Cohan), who’s just moved across the pond from Montana. She’s trying to escape an abusive relationship and finds a nanny job at the stately manor of the elderly Heelshire couple (Jim Norton and Diana Hardcastle). Turns out that there is no child… at least not in human form. The Heelshires are caring for Brahms, the aforementioned porcelain eight year old boy that they treat as if he was alive. He comes with lots of instructions, too. Some concern not leaving him alone and having no guests over. This doesn’t apply to their grocery deliverer Malcolm (Rupert Evans), who explains that there was a real Brahms who apparently perished in a fire years ago. When the homeowners take their first vacation in ages, Greta is left to care for the boy herself.
Of course, that’s when strange sound effects and happenings begin and soon our heroine comes to realize that the Heelshires might not be so crazy after all. TheBoy has a rather slow build-up and while this is effective in plenty of other horror titles, it doesn’t exactly work here. We also spend a considerable amount of screen time on Greta’s potential burgeoning romance with Malcolm and her failed one with her ex.
Yet the real relationship at focus is her and that doll. And it’s clearly the most important one to Brahms. Is this all as silly as it sounds? Yes and no. Obviously the concept is bonkers, but the screenplay takes itself way more seriously than it should. The tone feels off most of the time.
That said, many of the actors give it their all. Cohan makes for an appropriately scared and bewildered protagonist and the thespians portraying Brahms’s folks have some early moments of creepiness.
Many a flick of this genre relies on twists and TheBoy is another. The one here is more of a head scratcher than a good one and leaves far more questions than answers. As I write that, I recognize I’m maybe taking this too seriously. If this had been produced with a bit more gleeful recognition of its own absurdity, I probably wouldn’t have cared if it made sense.
The final weekend of January brings four new offerings to the multiplexes: animated threequel Kung Fu Panda 3, Marlon Wayans spoof Fifty Shades of Black, true life rescue drama The Finest Hours, and Western Jane Got a Gun with Natalie Portman. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them right here:
As I see it, Panda should have no trouble topping the charts with Fifty Shades coming in as a distant runner-up. The Revenant and Star Wars could find themselves in a competition for the three and four spots with The Finest Hours, which I have underperforming (especially considering its reported $80M budget). As for Jane, opening on just approximately 550 screens, my $1.7 million estimate for it should leave it outside the top ten.
And with that, my top five predictions for the weekend:
Kung Fu Panda 3
Predicted Gross: $41.7 million
2. Fifty Shades of Black
Predicted Gross: $16 million
3. The Finest Hours
Predicted Gross: $10.2 million
4. The Revenant
Predicted Gross: $9.8 million (representing a drop of 39%)
5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Predicted Gross: $8.6 million (representing a drop of 38%)
Box Office Results (January 22-24)
In a slow weekend where the winter storms in D.C. and NYC likely had a negative impact, Leonardo DiCaprio moved up to #1 with The Revenant. The potential Oscar favorite took in $16 million (under my $19.6M prediction) for a total of $119M.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens was second with $14 million, a bit under my $15.9M estimate and its record setting total now sits at $879M.
Last week’s champ Ride Along 2 suffered a huge drop in weekend #2 with $12.4 million (below my $16.8M projection). The Kevin Hart/Ice Cube sequel stands at $58 million and is unlikely to reach $100M – pretty disappointing considering the original just two years ago took in $134M.
A trio of newcomers all failed to make a splash and populated the 4-6 spots. All three opened a bit under my projections. The critically savaged Robert De Niro/Zac Efron comedy Dirty Grandpa placed fourth with $11.6 million (I said $14.6M).
Fifth place was British horror pic The Boy with a muted $10.7 million (my projection was $12.1M). Sixth place was YA adventure flick The 5th Wave with just $10.3 million (I said $11.4M). Look for all three to fade quickly.
And that’ll do it for now, folks! Until next time…
Three new titles open Friday to challenge Ride Along 2, The Revenant, and Star Wars at the box office: Robert De Niro/Zac Efron comedy Dirty Grandpa, British horror pic The Boy, and YA thriller The 5th Wave. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each here:
Any one of these newbies (especially Grandpa or The Boy in my view) could over perform, but as predicted I have this trio all debuting in the $11-$14 million range. I am also speculating that current champ Ride Along 2 (which didn’t match the gross of its predecessor) is likely to dip over 50%. That should leave The Revenant (fresh off receiving the most Oscar nominations) in a position to get to #1 after two weeks in the runner up position and Star Wars in a position to potentially remain in third.
And with that, my top six predictions for the weekend:
Predicted Gross: $19.6 million (representing a drop of 38%)
2. Ride Along 2
Predicted Gross: $16.8 million (representing a drop of 52%)
3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Predicted Gross: $15.9 million (representing a drop of 39%)
4. Dirty Grandpa
Predicted Gross: $14.6 million
5. The Boy
Predicted Gross: $12.1 million
6. The 5th Wave
Predicted Gross: $11.4 million
Box Office Results (January 15-17)
As expected, the return of Kevin Hart and Ice Cube in Ride Along 2 debuted atop the charts, finally knocking off Star Wars. Yet it didn’t earn quite as much as its predecessor did on the same weekend two years ago. The sequel posted $35.2 million, under my $45.5M prediction. Over the four day MLK day, it’s made $41M while the original made over $48M in 2014.
After a dozen Oscar nods, The Revenant held up remarkably well with $31.7 million, skyrocketing past my $21.4M estimate. Leo and the Bear clearly benefited immensely from the Academy buzz and its terrific total stands at $95M.
Star Wars finally fell closer to Earth after four weeks on top with $26.3 million (I said $23.9M) and its record setting total is at $858M.
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi had a so-so start with $16.1 million for fourth place, well under my kind $29.3M projection. Its 4 day MLK haul: $19.2M. Not bad, but for a film that generated heavy publicity, it’s a bit underwhelming.
Daddy’s Home was fifth and I incorrectly had it outside the top five. It made $9.5 million and sits at $131M.
The animated Arctic tale Norm of the North was sixth, premiering with a weak $6.8 million compared to my $9.3 estimate. Its 4 day MLK take? $9.3 million (of course).
And that’ll do it for now, my friends! Until next time…
The British set supernatural horror pic The Boy debuts next weekend, attempting to scare up some business for STX Entertainment. Directed by The Devil Inside maker William Brent Bell, this focuses on a creepy doll wreaking havoc on the nanny tasked to care for it (Lauren Cohan). Rupert Evans costars.
Trailers and TV spots for The Boy are a little bit creepy, but I’m not sure how much that will translate to box office dollars. Just last weekend, another horror title The Forest debuted to a respectable $13 million and it seems to me that this could premiere to around that number.
I wouldn’t be surprised if this flops and gets under double digits, but I’ll estimate that The Boy is able to reach close to those Forest grosses.