Mugen Train is a box office Demon!
Moviegoers remained on board the anime DEMON SLAYER – THE MOVIE: MUGEN TRAIN, pushing it to the top of the box office this weekend with an estimated $6.4 million!
The R-rated release from Sony’s FUNimation was slashed by 70% from its domestic opening last weekend, but it was enough to kick the Kombatant Kompetition out of first place.
The direct sequel to the popular TV show’s first season has a ten-day domestic total of $32.2 million, and has collected a worldwide total of $469 million including its 2020 international release.
The R-rated videogame adaptation MORTAL KOMBAT got power-punched down to second place with $6.2 million, a 73% fatality from last weekend’s #1 opening.
The $55 million live-action update of the popular and bloody fighting game series has a ten-day domestic total of $34 million and a worldwide total of $66.9 million. The Warner Bros. release is also available on the studio’s HBO Max streaming platform.
In third place was the PG-13 monster conflict GODZILLA VS. KONG with $2.7 million on its fifth weekend in theaters. The $200 million Warner Bros. movie (no longer streaming on HBO Max) has a domestic total of $90.3 million and $415 million worldwide.
Opening in fourth place was the new R-rated horror movie SEPARATION with $1.8 million for the weekend.
Directed by William Brent Bell (THE BOY, THE DEVIL INSIDE), the supernatural thriller from distributor Open Road features Rupert Friend, Mamie Gummer and Brian Cox.
In fifth place was the PG-rated animated fantasy RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON with $1.3 million. The Disney adventure has a domestic total of $41.5 million and $103.5 million worldwide after nine weekends.
The Bob Odenkerk action movie NOBODY was in sixth place with $1.2 million on its sixth weekend in theaters. The R-rated Universal thriller has a domestic total of $23.3 million and $40 million worldwide, on a reported cost of $16 million.
In seventh place was the PG-13 supernatural horror movie THE UNHOLY with $1.06 million. After five weekends, the $10 million thriller from Sony has a domestic total of $13.1 million and a worldwide total of $21 million.
Returning to battle Ramona’s seven evil exes was a special Dolby reissue of SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD in eighth place with $720,000 on 152 screens.
The PG-13 action-comedy from director Edgar Wright (SHAUN OF THE DEAD, BABY DRIVER) was considered a box office failure on its initial 2010 release, ending with $48 million worldwide on a $60 million budget. But thanks to healthy home video sales, the movie went on to become a cult favorite.
With this re-release’s weekend figure, the adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s graphic novel series now has a domestic total of $32.3 million.
Closing out the list for the week was the Warner Bros. animated/live-action hybrid TOM & JERRY and the R-rated comedy TOGETHER TOGETHER, which dropped by 41% from last weekend’s opening and has a ten-day domestic total of $1.02 million.
Departing the chart was the faith-based Mira Sorvino drama THE GIRL WHO BELIEVES IN MIRACLES and the Benedict Cumberbatch spy thriller THE COURIER.
Next weekend (which would normally have a huge superhero blockbuster on screens) will kick off the summer movie season with the Guy Ritchie crime thriller WRATH OF MAN.
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Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train
Godzilla vs. Kong
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Tom & Jerry
More money for monster mash!
The PG-13 creature conflict fell by 58% from last weekend’s three-day figure, putting the Warner Bros. release at a 12-day domestic total of $69.5 million to easily make it the highest North American box office gross of the pandemic period. (The monumental slugfest will also be available on the HBO Max streaming platform through the end of April.)
The GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS/KONG: SKULL ISLAND sequel from director Adam Wingard has also knocked an additional $288.3 out of international crowds for a worldwide total of $357.8 million, on a reported $200 million cost.
Stepping up a spot to second place was the Bob Odenkirk action-thriller NOBODY with $2.6 million on its third weekend. Universal’s R-rated revenge movie (available via VOD on April 16) has a domestic total of $15.6 million and $28.7 million worldwide, on a reported cost of $16 million.
Creeping down to third place was the Sam Raimi-produced supernatural horror movie THE UNHOLY with $2.4 million. The PG-13 Sony thriller only scared away 23% of business from last weekend’s opening, for a ten-day domestic total of $6.7 million.
Disney’s animated fantasy RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON was in fourth place with $2.1 million. After six weekends in theaters, the PG-rated adventure has a domestic total of $35.2 million and a worldwide total of $97.2 million.
Drifting into fifth place was the new deep space thriller VOYAGERS with an opening of $1.35 million for the weekend.
Directed by Neil Burger (LIMITLESS, DIVERGENT), the PG-13 sci-fi drama sends Tye Sheridan, Colin Farrell and Lily-Rose Depp into the cosmos in search of a new home.
The Lionsgate release, which cost a reported $29 million, was originally scheduled for November 25, 2020 but was delayed due to obvious coronavirus-related reasons.
In sixth place was the PG-rated live-action/animated hybrid TOM & JERRY with $1.1 million on its seventh weekend in theaters. The $79 million Warner Bros. release has a domestic total of $41.1 million and a worldwide total of $94.7 million.
The faith-based Mira Sorvino drama THE GIRL WHO BELIEVES IN MIRACLES was in seventh place with $597,000, getting a slight bump in business from its Easter weekend debut for a ten-day domestic total of $1.3 million.
In eighth place was the Benedict Cumberbatch espionage thriller THE COURIER with $436,000 on its fourth weekend, taking it to a domestic total of $4.9 million.
Wrapping up the list was the new Indian legal drama VAKEEL SAAB in ninth with an opening of $411,000 on only 290 screens, while the Tom Holland/Daisy Ridley sci-fi thriller CHAOS WALKING followed in tenth.
And after 20 weekends, the animated DreamWorks sequel THE CROODS: A NEW AGE finally departed from the chart. With a domestic total $56.7 million since its Thanksgiving weekend debut, the Universal release is the third-biggest pandemic performer behind Christopher Nolan’s TENET ($57.9 million) and the leviathans currently hammering each other in first place.
Next weekend gives those colossal rivals more time to tussle before new fighters enter cinemas on April 23 with the R-rated videogame adaptation MORTAL KOMBAT (which hits HBO Max on the same day). The bloody big-screen tournament has already punched $10.7 million from overseas audiences.
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Godzilla vs. Kong
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The Girl Who Believes in Miracles
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Tom & Jerry (Film Review)
Tom & Jerry (Film Review)
February 26, 2021 by: Matt Rooney
PLOT: Iconic cartoon rivals Tom & Jerry are back in a new movie, bringing their brand of cartoon chaos to a lavish New York hotel on the eve of a very important wedding.
REVIEW: Tom and Jerry are iconic, timeless “frenemies” for several reasons, chief among them that their rivalry is so simple. Tom is a cat, Jerry is a mouse, and as hard as Tom tries to catch Jerry, the mouse is far too clever and makes the cat look like a fool. As a cartoon, it makes for perfect slapstick that easily stands the test of time. Where the formula starts to implode is when you take that very direct premise, blow it up into an unreasonable 100 minutes, factor in an ensemble of useless humans who do more to hurt Tom & Jerry’s classic dynamic than add to it, and scatter them all across a story that just makes you wish you could get back to the cartoon hijinks. The result? A family film about as headache-inducing as watching an actual cat and mouse tear through your home.
Leaping out of the all-cartoon realm, this updated take on Tom & Jerry keeps the characters looking like their classic animated selves but places them in our very real world. Reading that, you probably don’t need me to go any further, as you’re likely already fearing – as you well should – all the cinematic crimes the movie will commit. Less Who Framed Roger Rabbit? and more the onslaught of films like Alvin and the Chipmunks, The Smurfs, and even the Rocky and Bullwinkle movie, Tom & Jerry makes the mistake in believing that the key to keeping these characters relevant and fun for new and old audiences alike is to take them out of their very colorful cartoon world and placing them in our very bland and dirty real one. Worse yet, to also pair them alongside human characters so lacking in charm or humor you would forget their names if they didn’t have to wear nametags for their jobs.
Taking place in the thrilling location of a fancy New York hotel, Tom, a down-on-his-luck cat who dreams of being a famous piano player, and Jerry, an ambitious mouse who wants to live the big life in the city, are thrust into scenario after scenario of the combative hijinks they’ve done best for years, all so they can have a shot at living a life of comfort in said hotel. In the middle of it all, for some reason, is small-time con artist, Kayla (Chloë Grace Moretz), who lies her way into an important job helping plan the hotel wedding between a hot, rich couple, Ben and Preeta (Colin Jost and Pallavi Sharda). This involves her teaming with Tom to get rid of Jerry (because who wants a lone mouse minding his own business in a hotel where rich people come?) and allowing chaos to ensue. Whatever creative decision led to the mesh of real and animated beyond wanting to do the bare minimum of making these characters feel modern is a mystery, but what this approach only achieves is making you wonder one thing from start to finish: Why is this a movie?
The premise – Tom and Jerry run amok in a hotel – is perfect for a several-minute segment in a series of cartoons, but for the movie, it’s a stretched out, mostly aimless exercise with a bevy of uninteresting humans having the impossible task of trying to pad it all out. Even the actors themselves seem to know they’re in the way, rushing through dialogue and letting jokes evaporate into thin air so the movie can get to what the people came for – elaborate pranks and shenanigans between a cartoon cat and mouse. When these moments of cartoon antics do get to play out do we get a sense of fun, with their back and forth offering up some old-school entertainment. Not every bit lands, and those usually are the result of the two (mostly Tom) having to deal with the limitations of a cartoon character interacting with the real world. However, when the effects do get kicked up a notch (like when Tom tries to sneak into the hotel via a clothing line in the middle of a thunderstorm), do we see the classic Tom & Jerry spirit come alive.
But as soon as the antics go, the humans come back in to ruin the fun. Moretz, who is normally great in much of what she’s given, has the impossible task of holding up so much of a movie where the only characters worth seeing are the cartoon cat and mouse. It’s a thankless role she’s in, and one that doesn’t even have the decency of being well-written, playing a sort of grifter with not much depth to her. We have little reason to like her until maybe the final 15 minutes, up until which she comes off as mostly a jerk. Michael Peña plays the overly-dedicated hotel higher-up, and luckily he’s talented enough in comedic roles to get some chuckles out of how seriously his character takes hotel event coordinating. Other funny people like Rob Delany (Deadpool 2) and Ken Jeong (a lot) are left stranded here, perhaps mercifully, knowing they don’t have as much responsibility in following up the real stars.
Humans even manage to ruin the exploration of the movie’s ultimate theme – which is putting aside your grievances and embracing what makes you a team. Logic would dictate that would be explored with some sweetness among the title duo, but instead, it’s mostly via Ben and Preeta. Ben is a schmuck who is ruining the couple’s wedding, and Preeta seems to be regretting marrying him at all. It would be worth it to see the two learn to love each other again if only Jost and Sharda had any chemistry with each other during the good times. But they’re humans in a cat and mouse world, and like the rest of their kind, are of no value here. Director Tim Story doesn’t seem to know what to do with his cast except get them through the scenes without messing up lines, and the script from Kevin Costello does nothing to make those scenes worthwhile, losing grip on what depth there is even in Tom & Jerry themselves before the 10-minute mark. The idea was to do something with Tom & Jerry so the names don’t die with the incoming generation, and together, they’ve done the barest of the minimum amount.
But Tom & Jerry are not the only animals here. Every animal in this world is a cartoon and many are callbacks to the original cartoons. Some of them talk, others don’t, but mostly, humans both live with them comfortably but are completely taken by surprise by the destruction they can cause. You would think they would have found a way to prevent “animal tornadoes” by now, but no. While a lot of money and valuable artistry was poured into meshing the animated with the realistic, it mostly looks…misguided. Sometimes the effects look okay – mostly when Tom & Jerry are going at it – and other times they look wildly out of place against the numbing artificial light of the sets. Again, it all begs the question of why the money was spent on a forgettable movie and not at a shot at creating a re-vamped cartoon series.
Of course, it seems nitpicky to go to town on a children’s film. But being a children’s film doesn’t give you the license to be terrible. Maybe with more innovative minds behind the scenes, this could’ve been great. A big, colorful world could’ve been created for these two classic characters to play in, but instead, they get New York on an uneventful Tuesday afternoon. My problem isn’t that it’s never funny; sometimes it can be. It’s just that when it’s not, it’s painfully dull and uninspired. Parents will get tired of the nostalgia after ten minutes, and kids will likely run to the other room when the cat and mouse aren’t on screen. This is a shocker because, clearly, if there’s anything that’s going to get young audiences to pay attention to the cartoon antics of Tom & Jerry, it’s the live-action supporting roles of Colin Jost and Ken Jeong.
AMC Studios to develop a TV series adaptation of 1992 film Stay Tuned
August 7, 2020 by: Steve Seigh
I can’t say that I’m surprised, given how awesome the movie was back in the day, but AMC Studios announced today that they’re developing STAY TUNED, a TV series adaptation of the 1992 cult classic comedy starring John Ritter and Pam Dawber. The project is currently being set up by Fear The Walking Dead co-showrunner/executive producer Ian Goldberg and writer/producer Richard Naing, who is poised to write the series.
STAY TUNED is definitely a wild ride. The original film revolves around a married couple, Roy (Ritter) and Helen Knable (Dawber), who after being duped into installing a high-tech satellite dish system filled with 666 channels of hellish programming, are forced to survive a gauntlet of life-threatening TV shows and films. The movie even saw Roy and Helen Knable being transported into an animated show a la Tom & Jerry, as well as a music video inspired by the Purple One, Prince. Jeffrey Jones and Eugene Levy also starred alongside Ritter and Dawber for the comedy that was filled with hell-born hijinks.
Goldberg is currently co-showrunning Fear the Walking Dead with Andrew Chambliss, which has proven to be a smash hit for AMC and then some. Previously, Goldberg and Naing had teamed for DEAD OF SUMMER, a 2016 television series that takes place in 1989, and shows what happens when a summer of fun soon turns into one of unforgettable scares and evil at every turn.
We’ll be sure to bring you more news about AMC’s STAY TUNED projects as it develops.