A May that had the potential to be absolutely huge ultimately ended up disappointing. The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Godzilla and X-Men: Days of Future Past all debuted to around the same amount, but not one has impressed with its legs. Meanwhile, Neighbors and Maleficent might go on to be the true success stories of the month. Who saw that coming? Anyway, we’ll see if June’s crop can offer some films that might have a little more staying power. Let’s take a look at them.
The Fault in Our Stars
My Thoughts: Well, Shailene Woodley certainly has kept busy lately. I’ll give her that much, but she’s yet to really prove herself a capable actress to me. Then again, the only thing I’ve ever actually seen her in is Secret Life of the American Teenager (of which, yes, I watched a few episodes, mostly because it was such a hilariously unintentional comedy). So, that’s not really fair. Either way, I dunno, I can’t shake the feeling that this is another of those young adult novel adaptations that would ordinarily do around $50 million. However, the buzz for this is pretty high, and the book is apparently very popular. I’ve seen people through absurdly high predictions for this film (as in an opening weekend higher than fifty million), but I just cannot fathom TFIOS even approaching that. Nonetheless, it should be a solid success.
Opening Weekend: $32 million
Total Gross: $75 million
Edge of Tomorrow
My Thoughts: I don’t know if it’s my ineptitude or the fault of the advertising, but I just don’t get this movie. Its concept is mixed and strange, with little clarity presented in the trailers. And it just doesn’t look all that interesting. The easy comparison here is Oblivion, Tom Cruise’s somewhat disappointing sci-fi venture from last year. That opened to $37 million and pulled in $89 million in total. At this point, I think those would be rather optimistic numbers for Edge of Tomorrow to shoot for.
Opening Weekend: $26 million
Total Gross: $68 million
22 Jump Street
My Thoughts: Prior to seeing 21 Jump Street, I wasn’t a big Channing Tatum fan (was anyone?) and I’d gotten so tired of seeing the trailer before every single movie for months, I skipped out on seeing it in theatres. Big mistake. 21 Jump Street ended up being a very clever, self-aware comedy that showed Channing Tatum actually has quite a bit of talent. At the box office, the film was a big success, pulling in $138 million. Since then, Tatum and Jonah Hill have only gotten more popular, and the trailers for 22 Jump Street look quite funny. So while this entry might not have quite the good legs of the first one, it’s opening should be pretty big, especially since its comedy competition won’t be too fierce.
Opening Weekend: $45 million
Total Gross: $128 million
How to Train Your Dragon 2
My Thoughts: I’m a tad ashamed to admit I have not seen the original How to Train Your Dragon. It’s a beloved instant classic animated film, and if there’s one thing I love almost as much as superhero movies, it’s animated instant classics. Four years have passed since the original and that’s plenty of time to build up an audience, especially since this is the kind of animated flick that appeals to all ages. The first HTTYD grossed $217 million. If it increases a growth similar to Despicable Me to its sequel, it would end up around $315 million. While that might be ambitious, it’s not unthinkable. Regardless, this film will be big, especially since it’s the only animated family fare for pretty much the whole summer.
Opening Weekend: $78 million
Total Gross: $275 million
My Thoughts: Gotta be honest, I really don’t know much Jersey Boys. I’m pretty sure it’s a musical stage show….or something? I think. Anyway, projects like this are hit and miss. I base this on nothing but intuition, but something tells me Jersey Boys will be more toward the hit side of the equation. It’s a popular show, and it appeals to a niche market that doesn’t get many films. So…yeah.
Opening Weekend: $17 million
Total Gross: $45 million
Think Like a Man Too
My Thoughts: Perhaps we’re getting a little oversaturated on Kevin Hart. He is pretty much everywhere and seems to crop up in two or three movies every year anymore. Nonetheless, he remains popular and Ride Along, despite bad reviews and so-so reception, still made $134 million earlier this year. The first (geez, there are a lot of sequels this month) Think Like a Man pulled in $91 million and while I don’t think the sequel will quite reach those heights, it should still be successful.
Opening Weekend: $26 million
Total Gross: $65 million
Transformers: Age of Extinction
My Thoughts: People hate on Michael Bay and the Transformers films a lot. Despite that, they were all hugely successful. I’ll readily admit they’re not good films, but that’s not the point. Was I entertained? Hell yes. Mission accomplished, Mr. Bay. Age of Extinction is in some ways a sequel and in others a reboot. Shipping out Shia Labeouf in favor of Mark Wahlberg is a great move, and so far the advertising has been great. Also, Dinobots! Again I say unto you, hell yes.
My own enthusiasm aside, I do think this entry will definitely suffer from some franchise fatigue. Word of mouth on Dark of the Moon seemed only a little better than Revenge of the Fallen (for the record, I thought DOTM was significantly better than ROTF and it’s actually my favorite of the trilogy), so we’re almost definitely in store for a fall-off. Unless, of course, Age of Extinction ends up being really good. It does have a weekend all to itself, and for now, it’s scheduled for a Friday opening. Like Dark of the Moon, that will probably get changed to a Wednesday, but if it does premiere on a Friday, I think AOE will be the first flick of the year to crack $100 million mark for an opening weekend.
Opening Weekend: $110 million
Total Gross: $275 million