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New Movies and Box Office Predictions: New in Town, Taken, The Uninvited

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This record-setting (box office-wise) January comes to a close with a mixture of romance, horror, action, and comedy. Do any of them stand a chance as America slows down to prepare for the Super Bowl? I am sure there will be some brave souls willing to step into the slow theaters and possibly miss out on the festivities. Will you?

New in Town. (2009, 96 minutes, PG, romantic comedy, trailer) Renee Zellweger returns to the big screen in a fish-out-of-water romantic comedy that pairs her off with Harry Connick Jr. The story has Zellweger as an up and coming executive who loves the big city life and all it has to offer. Her life is thrown for a loop when she gets an assignment to turn around a Minnesota factory. The problem is that she is completely unprepared for small town life, especially when she’s surrounded by snow. I cannot say it looks like a great movie, but it could prove moderately enjoyable.

Taken. (2009, 93 minutes, PG-13, thriller) Liam Neeson takes to the action-thriller stage with this Pierre Morel-helmed feature that had a run in France in 2008. The trailer alone is a pretty intense little clip. Liam Neeson’s daughter (Maggie Grace) goes to France with friends for a vacation. While there, she is kidnapped and this does not sit well. Neeson goes on a mad hunt looking for her using his “unique” set of skills. I have heard positive early buzz and look forward to checking it out.

The Uninvited. (2009, 87 minutes, PG-13, horror, trailer) Hot on the heels of The Unborn comes The Uninvited. One can only hope this is better — somehow I tend to doubt it, considering I feel I have seen the entire film in the trailer. I hate it when trailers give away too much; in the past couple of months we have had a couple trailers give away the very final shot. Anyway, this is a remake of the Korean film A Tale of Two Sisters. It is about a teen who comes home after some time in a hospital following the death of her mother to discover her father is engaged to her mother’s former nurse. She is visited by her mother’s ghost and learns all is not as it seems. The cast includes Emily Browning, Arielle Kebbel, David Strathairn, and Elizabeth Banks.

Also opening this week, but not near me:

  • Blessed Is the Match: The Life and Times of Hannah Senesh
  • Serbis

Box Office Predictions

Last week Paul Blart: Mall Cop surprised everyone (well, me at least) by taking the top spot at the box office for the second week in a row. Considering how bad my guesses were last week, I do not see this week being any better. I look at the trio of films hitting wide release and I have no idea how well they will do. So, this week will bring new surprises with it. Something tells me that the new Renee Zellweger comedy will prove to be the week’s top entry. But who knows what will happen — my recent track record has not been all that great.

Here is how I think the top ten field will play out:

Rank Title Box Office
1 New in Town $16 million
2 Taken $14 million
3 Paul Blart: Mall Cop $11 million
4 Underworld: Rise of the Lycans $10.5 million
5 Gran Torino $9 million
6 The Uninvited $8 million
7 Slumdog Millionaire $8 million
8 Hotel for Dogs $7 million
9 My Bloody Valentine 3D $5 million
10 Inkheart $4 million
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