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Box Office Update 3/5-3/7: Alice In Wonderland Flies to Oz

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That's right, Alice in Wonderland took off like a whirlwind and flew all the way to Oz. It's $116 million opening weekend made it the biggest March opening ever, not to mention the biggest opening outside the main summer months of May, June, and July. The Tim Burton-helmed film is also the biggest opening of his career. The 3D film seemed to strike a chord with audiences as they seemed more than willing to charge out to theaters en masse for the first time in 2010.

The question now is going to be whether it can keep it up. Do you think it will? I am not so sure. I cannot say I was terribly enamored with the film and I have to wonder if word of mouth will be good enough to support continued strong box office returns. Don't get me wrong, there are lots of things to like about it. The imagery is very good, the 3D effect are well executed, and there are individual performances and scenes that I really enjoyed. The problem is that there is no glue holding it together and there is a sad lack of heart.

Coming in second is another mediocre film that has some good performances and tense scenes but fails to come together in a meaningful manner. The movie is Brooklyn's Finest, the latest cop thriller from Antoine Fuqua (Training Day). The film feels like a cross between The Departed and Training Day without rising to the level of either. The movie stars Ethan Hawke, Don Cheadle, and Richard Gere as three cops on three different beats whose stories converge over a drug deal. If you like cop movies, this is the movie to see; just keep your expectations in check. The best part of the film? Don Cheadle. The man is a great actor.

Slipping to third place from the first place spot it has held for the past two weeks is Martin Scorsese's Shutter Island. The thriller based on a Dennis Lehane novel is one of the best films of the young year. It may have a "3" next to its title in the box office chart, but it came within $75,000 of being the number two film. It really is well worth seeing and if you haven't, do yourself a favor.

Fourth place is held by Cop Out. This second weekend sees the Kevin Smith comedy become the biggest film of his career outgrossing last year's Zack and Miri Make a Porno. I wish it was a better film. I wish it was a film that he wrote. This one does not have a heart and may have a couple of funny moments but fails to really develop into anything. Still, perhaps this work for hire will help him get funding for his own projects.

As for the rest of the chart, there is nothing particularly special except, perhaps, for one thing. Crazy Heart climbed up one spot and increased its take by nearly 35% over last week. I am sure it has to do with the buzz surrounding Jeff Bridges' Oscar nomination, but whatever it takes to get people into theaters to see it on the big screen, right?

Next weekend sees a number of new releases enter the fray. Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass deliver Middle East thrills with Green Zone. Forest Whitaker and Carlos Mencia butt heads in Our Family Wedding. Robert Pattinson leaves behind the sparkles and glitter for Remember Me, a romantic drama he co-stars with Emilie de Ravin. Finally, Jay Baruchel arrives in She's Out of My League, a sex comedy that looks kind of funny but not necessarily good.

Two movies dropped off the list this week:Tooth Fairy(11) andThe Wolfman(12).

This Week Last Week Title Wknd Gross Overall Week in release
1 N Alice in Wonderland (2010) $116,101,023 $116,101,023 2
2 N Brooklyn's Finest $13,350,299 $13,350,299 1
3 1 Shutter Island $13,225,411 $95,750,005 3
4 2 Cop Out $9,289,311 $32,504,610 2
5 4 Avatar $8,118,102 $720,607,444 12
6 3 The Crazies $7,078,851 $27,472,164 2
7 5 Percy Jackson $5,124,623 $78,057,749 4
8 6 Valentine's Day $4,154,110 $106,303,870 4
9 10 Crazy Heart $3,312,591 $29,532,002 12
10 7 Dear John $2,782,079 $76,626,086 5

Box Office Predictions Recap

Not so bad on the numbering and not so bad on the grosses, so long as you don't count Alice in Wonderland. Who knew that Burton's Alice would fly so high? I guess I should have known. At the very least I should have been a little bit closer to the actual. This was a very big weekend and easily brought with it the biggest film of the year. I only wish the movie had been better. Seeing this pull down this enormous bank, I am hoping that Iron Man 2 outdoes it — the film looks great and I am really looking forward to that one.

Here is how the field matched up:

Actual Prediction Title Wknd Gross Prediction
1 1 Alice in Wonderland (2010) $116,101,023 $65 million
3 2 Shutter Island $13,350,299 $15 million
2 3 Brooklyn's Finest $13,655,274 $10 million
4 4 Cop Out $9,289,311 $9 million
5 5 Avatar $8,118,102 $8 million
6 6 The Crazies $7,078,851 $7.5 million
7 7 Percy Jackson $5,124,623 $5 million
8 8 Valentine's Day $4,154,110 $3.5 million
10 9 Dear John $2,782,079 $3 million
12 10 The Wolfman $1,636,835 $2 million

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