Had to be blind to not see DC film hitting No. 1
As expected, Matt Reeves’ long-anticipated The Batman took the No. 1 spot at the U.S. box office last weekend, selling a whopping $128.5 million over its first three days of release. Add in foreign sales, and The Batman has brought in $248 million.
Reviews are mixed, but word of mouth has been really strong over the weekend.
Congrats to Reeves, star Robert Pattinson, and the rest of the cast on doing the impossible: making a hit film about a normal man who walks around dressed like a bat. Never been done before. But I digress … this is one I’ll see eventually.
Reeves has earned my trust, and if I like any superhero at all, it’s Batman. So, yeah, I will probably see this one on the big screen. Partially because it seems like a fun time, but mostly because Greig Fraser shot it.
Unfamiliar with Fraser? The still-young cinematographer already has a number of classics to his name, including Let Me In, Killing Them Softly, Zero Dark Thirty, Foxcatcher, Mary Magdalene, Vice, and, most notably, Dune. He’s incredible. And he shot a Batman movie. So yeah, I gotta go see it.
Also at the box
Uncharted continued to roll, taking the No. 2 spot at the domestic box office with another $11 million in sales. The flick made just over $100 million over its first 17 days of release.
So what are we seeing in this post-ish-COVID landscape? Action films do well. Uncharted, which is not a sequel, has made $271 million worldwide. In fact, this week’s whole top 5 is comprised of action films. This tells us what we thought: People will leave their homes if you promise them a spectacle, if you give them something they don’t feel they can get it home. Make it crazy, make it big, make it loud, make it bright. So, sure, action films will live on.
How will the rest of the cinema world continue? Will there be films like The Worst Person in the World in the top 10 in a few years?
Dog took the No. 3 spot at last weekend’s box, selling another $6 million, upping the film’s 17-day sales total to $40 million. Another action film. A silly one, even.
The inevitable Spider-Man: No Way Home continued its reign as perhaps one of the most popular films ever made, taking the No. 4 spot at the domestic box office with another $4.4 million in sales over its 12th weekend. Wow.
This movie has made $1.866 billion worldwide. In most cases, we say that films have been making half (or less) of what they would have made at the theater before COVID. I don’t think that metric quite applies here, but I do think that had this film been released sans COVID, it would be the No. 1 grossing film of all-time.
Good for you, Spidey.
And finally, taking the No. 5 spot, we have Kenneth Branagh’s Death on the Nile, which sold just $2.7 million. Oof. However, something tells me Branagh will be just fine.
New this week
The Batman wil absolutely dominate this coming weekend, too. And so the studios aren’t really putting much out.
In fact, there are zero new wide releases coming this weekend. On most weekends, there are at least two or three, and in those hot summer months there are weeks with six or more. But none this week. Not in the shadow of the Bat.
That being said, there is a really interesting indie film that slipped under the radar during the Bat Weekend. It’s After Yang and it’s the second major feature film from Columbus director Kogonada. If you’re not familiar with Kogonada, now is your chance.
A film scholar who made his name producing very good bonus features for The Criterion Collection, Kogonada is very much one of the faces of cinema’s future.
So far he’s been doing smaller budget films, but I’d guess that changes soon, as he continues to make his name. I haven’t seen After Yang, but the stills I’ve seen are beautiful, the premise sounds amazing, and the trailer is gorgeous.