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New Movies and Box Office Predictions: The Proposal, Year One. Away We Go

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Blockbuster season week eight is upon us. Funny, for blockbuster season, this weekend does not seem all that much like a blockbuster weekend. For that matter, the past couple of weeks have not felt all that blockbuster like. Next week will be the game-changer when the much-hyped Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen arrives in all its special effects laden glory. Until that day comes, we still have this weekend with its comedic offerings. Sounds like just the thing the doctor ordered.

The Proposal. (2009, 107 minutes, PG-13, romantic comedy) Here is a movie I cannot say I have terribly high expectations for, however, I am intrigued by it, somewhat. The story centers on a book editor who is up for a promotion but also faces deportation. If she is deported back to Canada, she will not be eligible to work for this American company, so she needs to find a solution. Her idea? Marry her assistant for the green card and keep her job. Unfortunately, the surprise engagement, even to the groom, finds the new and awkward couple going to see his family in Alaska, where they proceed to stage a surprise wedding for them. Yes, it is a little far-fetched, but what it has working in its favor is the cast. Leading the way is Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds, a pair of charismatic and likable screen presences who should be able to pull off what is sure to be a rather silly movie. I am interested, but it is not at the top of my list.

Year One. (2009, 100 minutes, PG-13, comedy) I believe this movie is going to do well, although I also feel its success will ultimately be tied to how much you like Jack Black. Set in the year one (duh), a couple of hunter/gatherers are kicked out of their tribe. The two set off on an adventure across the ancient world, ultimately having to save some members of their old tribe who have been captured by a militaristic community. Jack Black and Michael Cera co-star as the adventurers and it sports a supporting cast containing David Cross, Paul Rudd, Oliver Platt, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Juno Temple, Xander Berkeley, Hank Azaria, and Vinnie Jones. At the helm is Harold Ramis who successfully appealed an R rating without having to make any cuts.

Away We Go. (2009, 100 minutes, R, comedy) This film from Sam Mendes looks funny, sweet, a little odd, and very indie. Whether or not that is going to add up to a good movie is yet to be seen. This had its official open a week or two back but is now moving into my area. The movie stars John Krasinski (The Office) and Maya Rudolph (Saturday Night Live) as an expectant couple traveling around the U.S. looking for the right place to begin their family. I am looking forward to seeing this, it just seems different. The supporting cast includes Jeff Daniels, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jim Gaffigan, and Allison Janney.

Also opening this week, but not near me:

  • Dead Snow
  • Whatever Works

Box-Office Predictions

This week does not seem to offer anything of particular value. I am interested in one of the two, and not so much in the other. This is a tough call to make. Will one of these upstarts take the top spot or will we see a past winner return? I honestly have no idea. There are no sure things on the schedule until Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen arrives in a couple of weeks. I am going to go with a narrow victory for the Denzel/Travolta team up over the latest Pixar masterpiece. I do not see Imagine That being a genuine contender, although I have been known to be wrong, from time to time.

Here is how I think it could play out.

Rank Title Box Office
1 Year One $27 million
2 Up $23 million
3 The Hangover $20 million
4 The Proposal $19 million
5 The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 $12.5 million
6 Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian $6 million
7 Land of the Lost $5 million
8 Star Trek $4 million
9 Imagine That $3.25 million
10 Terminator: Salvation $3 million
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