Short notes and brief thoughts: Round 2

Updating my biggest summer grosses list

Originally I thought that the top five grosses of the summer would belong to Transformers 3, Harry Potter 7-2, The Hangover Part II, Cars 2 and Super 8. However, Cars 2 and Super 8 have not met my expectations ($250 million + for Cars 2 and $220 million for Super 8), so I am reconsidering my list. I’m sticking with my top three and changing out the final two. It crushes me to do this, because the movie sucked so bad, but I’m going to have to put Pirates of the Caribbean: Arr give me your money on the list. It’s already made more than $237 million. I’m so depressed right now.

The updated Top Five:

Transformers 3

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2

The Hangover Part II

Pirates of the Caribbean: Arr give me your money

Captain America: The First Avenger

As you can see, I’m sticking with my prediction that TF3 will out-gross HP 7-2. Again, this has ZERO to do with quality or which movie I liked more. It’s purely to do with past trends. Transformers has out-performed HP in the US twice and while HP 7-2 broke several records on opening weekend, typically the Harry Potter movies are frontloaded and everyone runs out to see it on opening weekend, which means weeks 2 and 3 take huge hits. I expect both weeks to see 60-70% reductions. Basically, opening weekend is going to be almost half of the total gross, which means HP 7-2 has an earning potential up to $340 million. It’ll probably tap out closer to $320 million. TF3, meanwhile, is already over $300 million and is on pace for a finish closer to $330 million. It’ll be close between them.

The Walking Dead season 2 sneak peek

During the Breaking Bad season premiere (which…has this show jumped the shark?) AMC aired a one minute sneak peek of season 2 of The Walking Dead. The clip doesn’t reveal anything about plot but it does capture the tense, claustrophobic tone of the show. I can’t wait for season 2 and 13 whole episodes. Why isn’t it October already? Watch Officer Rick brain a couple zombies with a rock:

Also, this clip is very sweaty. We may have to change Rick Grimes’ nickname from “Officer Rick” to “Grimy Grimes”.

Speaking of teasers…

There’s one for The Dark Knight Rises now. I thought it was very anti-climactic. It’s two-thirds clips from the previous movies, intertitle and title cards. There’s a little speechifying by an injured Commissioner Gordon and the most interesting bit is the two seconds that shows Batman squaring off with Bane (Tom Hardy). The key art design bugs me, too. The disintegrating buildings are very Inception. Am I worried about The Dark Knight Rises? No. Why? Because all this tells me is that Warner Brothers was more interested in sticking a teaser in front of one of the biggest movies of the year than Christopher Nolan was interested in cutting an actual trailer. The movie will be fine and once Nolan is done filming and actually has time to focus on marketing decisions I’m sure the trailers will get a lot better.

Because Warner Brothers doesn’t understand the 21st Century, you have to click here to see the teaser.


I got to see Attack the Block, the debut film from writer/director Joe Cornish (co-writer of The Adventures of Tin-Tin). I’ve heard a lot of hype for this movie following its premiere at SXSW and it totally lived up to it. In the vein of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, though darker in tone and sharper in theme, Attack the Block is a bit like Super 8—an on-purpose 1980’s throwback, this time reminiscent of Gremlins or Critters. You won’t recognize the cast, except for Nick Frost, but the young’uns, most of whom were first-timers in this movie, are impressive. Lead by John Boyega as Moses and Alex Esmail as Pest, the story centers on a group of London-projects thugs who must fend off an alien invasion while also avoiding the police and gangsters. It’s funny, tense and violent in turns. I loved it and it’s getting very little marketing from Screen Gems so it’ll live or die on word of mouth. It opens in limited release on July 29. Find it. It’s worth it.


The Pirates! are coming

Have you read Gideon Defoe’s The Pirates! series? No? WHY NOT? They’re pocket-sized books of hilarity and pirates with luxurious beards or scarves. I adore Defoe’s books and my collection is almost always leant out to someone. The first movie is coming next year, IN SEPTEMBER, which is intolerable. I can’t wait that long! The trailer is out, and it’s awesome. There’s a pointless name change for the US release—the UK is getting it as The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists, which is the book’s title, but the US is getting it as The Pirates! Band of Misfits. Pointless but the movie looks GREAT. Done in stop-motion animation by Aardman Studios (they make Wallace & Gromit), the design fits the book perfectly. The vocal talent is lead by Hugh Grant as the Pirate Captain and his voice over in the trailer is phenomenal. CANNOT. WAIT.

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