The summer is over and September is upon us. The result? One of the most boring weekend box office reports in months. Months! The month or so following the end of the summer movie season is traditionally one of the worst of the year, the time when Hollywood unleashes all of the films that they have little faith in, a buffer between the blockbuster months and the award season months. In other words, it's the exact kind of climate where a movie like 'One Direction: This is Us' can thrive.
Remember how, a few years ago, we were all ready to write Matthew McConaughey off? It's hard to believe that we ever thought such a thing. His latest film, 'Dallas Buyers Club,' contains the latest in his string of brave and exciting roles, following up bravura performances in 'Killer Joe,' 'Mud,' 'Bernie' and 'Magic Mike.' The first trailer for the film has arrived and it definitely looks like a film to keep your eye on.
Despite a bunch of new releases with all kinds of wide and varied appeal, this weekend's box office top 10 looks suspiciously like last week's. Apparently, none of the newcomers could match Lee Daniels' 'The Butler,' which effortlessly claimed the top spot once more.
When 'Star Wars: Episode 7' was initially announced, a 2015 release date was attached, leading everyone everywhere to believe that J.J. Abrams' film would arrive in May of that year. And why wouldn't they? All six previous 'Star Wars' films have opened in that month and that month has certainly been kind to the franchise. However, new buzz suggests that while the latest entry in the saga will indeed hit theaters in 2015, it'll break tradition and do so a little later in the year.
There's something thematically appropriate about a movie telling the story of a butler who quietly influenced the United States taking the number one spot at the box office over its flashy, bigger rivals. Lee Daniels' 'The Butler' took multiplexes by storm this weekend, taking down last week's competition as well as a handful of seemingly strong newcomers.
Anyone who has been following superhero movies knows that Robert Downey, Jr. has signed on to return as Tony Stark in 'The Avengers 2' and 'The Avengers 3,' but his future as Iron Man beyond that is up in the air. It's unlikely that Downey (who will be 53 when the third 'Avengers' film hits) will occupy the role forever, and Marvel hasn't been shy about recasting the character should the need ever arise.
And that brings us to the weird news bit of the day: Mark Wahlberg wants to takeover the part.
In a weekend with four new major releases but no definitive frontrunners, the Matt Damon sci-fi action flick 'Elysium' snagged the top spot over some seemingly powerful competition. Director Neill Blomkamp's film continues this summer's trend of R-rated fare opening big ('The Purge,' 'The Conjuring,' '2 Guns') and proves that there's plenty of box office success to be had in the typically slow final weeks of the season.
Before the critical accolades of 'Breaking Bad,' before the memorable stint on 'Malcolm in the Middle,' the great Bryan Cranston was just a working actor, the kind of guy who couldn't say no to a part unless he decided he didn't want to pay his rent. This means that the early filmography of the man who would be Walter White is filled with all kinds of odd projects ... and 'Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers,' a fact that Jay Leno dredged up when Cranston appeared on 'The Tonight Show.'
Ah, the continuing appeal of the one and only Denzel Washington. How much do people love this guy? They love him so much that they'll transform just about any movie he appears in into a respectable hit, even if that movie is a poorly marketed (but well-reviewed) action movie based on a comic book that no one read. We shouldn't be surprised that '2 Guns' shot to the top of the box office, but we are a little. Oh, Denzel Washington, you always catch us off guard.
As the 'Fast and Furious' series has progressed, the cast has steadily increased in size and star power. Just look at the line-up of this summer's 'Fast and Furious 6,' which somehow managed to wrangle up every cast member from across the franchise while adding a few more faces. Well, it looks like another character will be joining the crew for 'Fast and Furious 7,' but he will not be played by Denzel Washington...because he turned down the role.
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