Michel Gondry and Seth Rogen might have only scored so-so with the critics, but it didn't stop audiences from turning out to see The Green Hornet this weekend. With $34 million, the new release displaced last week's top spot, True Grit, landing itself solidly in 1st place. Trailing in second with half that amount, The Dilemma, the Ron Howard comedy about lies and infidelity, made $17.4 million. Grit remained in the top three with $11.2 million, and in its fourth week has earned $126.4 million. Of these, True Grit remains an overall favorite, while Green Hornet has received moderate reviews and Dilemma hasn't found praise from either critics or audiences.
Fourth and fifth place belonged to much smaller films this weekend, defying the odds and rising through the ranks. The King's Speech earned $9 million this weekend, just ahead of Black Swan, which earned $8.1 million. Both films cost less than $15 million to make apiece, and yet continue to show strong earnings for their genres, even after several weeks at the box office. Blockbuster Little Fockers fell below both, landing in 6th with $7.1 million, though with $134 million in four weeks it hasn't shown too badly itself despite poor reviews.
Tron: Legacy rode into 7th with $5.6 million, adding a drop in the bucket to its $156.9 million earnings, while in 8th, Yogi Bear made $5.3 million, making $82 million in five weeks. At $5.1 million, The Fighter hangs onto 9th. While it made less than Yogi this weekend, Fighter has long since shown a profit in six weeks, while Yogi has just barely managed to cover its budget in five weeks, even counting foreign totals (costing $80 million to make, the worldwide totals for Yogi amounts to $95.3 million).
The title of Roman Polanski's film Chinatown refers to the state of mind of Jack Nicholson's character, a former cop in L.A.'s Chinatown who left the force and turned private eye after getting in over his head on a case he never fully understood, bringing tragedy to a woman he'd sought to help.
History begins to repeat itself in characteristically bleak...Read More
It is unfortunate when a film of significant value is primarily known for a ratings board controversy. Such is the case with the exceptional new indie drama Blue Valentine, a soulful scrapbook of a young marriage in its death throes and a proper introduction to an intimate new voice in director Derek Cianfrance. Initially damned with the stigmatized NC-17 rating by the MPAA,...Read More
When most people think of The Green Hornet, most remember Van Williams as the Green Hornet and the legendary Bruce Lee as Kato. Despite the series lasting only one season (26 episodes) the two actors left an indelible impression. Van Williams portrayed Britt Reid as a suave, cool playboy and Bruce Lee was, well, Bruce Lee. More than 40 years later The Green...Read More
J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings saga (originally published in three volumes from July 1954 to October 1955) was bound to be adapted eventually to the cinema, but the task of visualizing Tolkien's imaginary world was daunting, and the project awaited a director bold enough and inventive enough to take it on. (Ralph Bakshi had done a partial animated adaptation in 1978 that...Read More
Nosferatu was the first film version of Dracula; more than 70 years later, it remains easily the most intelligent adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel (its nearest, not very close, rival being John Badham's 1978 version with Frank Langella).
Given the way in which Stoker's vampire aristocrat has haunted popular culture since the appearance of the novel in 1890, the figure's social/ideological...Read More
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest – the first film to win Academy Awards for Best Picture, Director, Actor, Actress and Screenplay since It Happened One Night in 1934 – is more than a superlative human drama. It is, on a broader level, one of the seminal works of its time in that it keenly reflects the systematic stifling of individuality within post-World...Read More
The plot of Sunrise was adapted to Hollywood conventions from a naturalistic novella by Hermann Sudermann. It is wrong, however, to assume the changes were all for the bad, as so many critics have done. The film's plot is neither hopelessly sentimental nor melodramatic. It is true that Carl Mayer and F. W. Murnau, with a free hand from the studio, changed the...Read More
True Grit, relegated to second place for two weeks in a row, finally pulled ahead of Little Fockers, taking the top spot and earning $15 million for its efforts, putting the Coen Brothers western at $110 million in 3 weeks. Fockers fell to 2nd place with $13.8 million, still edging out Grit in overall earnings with $123.9 million during the same time span....Read More
Although it has been seldom shown in the years since its introduction in 1932 as a "masterpiece of horror," Tod Browning's Freaks has achieved near-legendary cult status and continues to exert a major influence on modern attempts at the baroque film. Certainly the powers of its wedding feast sequence was not lost on Luis Buñuel when he staged the tramp's "last supper" in...Read More