The Fourth of July Weekend was slated to be a battle between two movies- Terminator Genisys and Magic Mike XXL. Predictions had it as a fairly close battle with both of the movies pulling in somewhere in the neighborhood for 50-55 million dollars. Well, a funny thing happened on the way to the movies and the results were a very different outcome than what most were predicting. Inside Out (a movie that came out weeks ago) ended up making 45.3 million dollars over the holiday weekend to take the title as this weekend’s #1 movie. Jurassic World was in a dead heat for 2nd with Terminator Genisys each pulling about 44 million dollars apiece. Magic Mike XXL finished 4th making just 27 million dollars for the holiday weekend. This weekend provided some telling insight into where the public is spending his/her money at the box office. Let’s break it down.
Never underestimate the power of families–
Inside-out is showing some impressive staying power at the box office. According to Variety “Inside Out is showing at 4,100 theaters and has earned around 250 million dollars at the box office over the last 3 weeks.” According to boxofficemojo.com, Inside Out is showing very little in the way of slowing down as well even with the addition of other choices for the public to choose from. As a father of a 2 ½ year old, I can say that I am not at all shocked at the success of this movie. How often can we say that a movie is not only kid friendly, but able to keep adults engaged, and has a tremendous message for all children? Families matter and have the power to dictate the box-office I fully expect this to continue this weekend when the Minions hits theaters.
Never underestimate the power of nostalgia-
Jurassic World and Terminator both drew in people this weekend with promises of taking us back to when we were much younger. I know that even though I was going to see both of these films for free, I was excited to sit in that theater and compare the past movies with the new ones. Jurassic World took me back about 22 years to the original release of Jurassic Park. I could feel myself on the edge of my seat from beginning to end, just like I had been so long ago. People are drawn to movies that take us back and will continue to be drawn to them for the foreseeable future. As long as movie companies are committed to making sure the product is up to standard then these movies will make lots of money.
Never overestimate the power of a terrible idea-
Magic Mike XXL was released in about 3,300 theaters this holiday weekend with hopes of dancing its way into the #1 spot over the weekend. I remember thinking as I was heading into the theater, haven’t we done this already? As I was leaving the theater and I was telling anyone who would listen just how horrible that movie was I immediately felt that even writing the review for Magic Mike XXL would be a futile exercise. I had this feeling that women would go see this in groups thus making this movie a runaway hit. I didn’t take into account the power of word of mouth reviews. According to Variety ” Magic Mike XXL made 15 million dollars in its first two days of being released.” This had industry insiders already to hand Magic Mike the crown but then the word got out about this movie. The very women who went to this film started to realize how much of a terrible idea it was to buy tickets for this cinematic accident and started telling their friends, Ticket sales came to a screeching halt.
Faced with the prospects of not enough women to help hit those projections, this movie is destined to fall off that box office cliff into the Dollar Spot at Target.
I think this weekend is a perfect example of no matter how much we try and predict what’s going to transpire at the box office, it all comes down to what families truly want to see. A family based film has a broader appeal. Nostalgia based films have a wider appeal as well. A movie made primarily for women, with no intrinsic value otherwise, has no broad appeal. Unfortunately, Magic Mike XXL is a dumpster fire of a movie and I’m glad that the word is now out. I fully expect Jurassic World, Inside-out, and Terminator Genisys to continue to make money. Magic Mike XXL will end up dying a quick death at the box-office.