Will be leaving shortly to check out THE KINGDOM at the Arclight in Hollywood, the best place to see this type of film.
Not all that surprised that Disney's family film THE GAME PLAN beat THE KINGDOM out for #1 at the box office; a hard-R action flick set in the Middle East just has it's limits. With a $22 million start, THE GAME PLAN is yet another solid earner for Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. While not the Arnold Schwarzenegger of his generation, as some had predicted, "The Rock" has delivered respectable, $40-60 million grosses in almost every one of the movies that he's starred in. His career high, I believe, is still THE SCOROPION KING, a MUMMY spin-off that more or less stunk up the joint. He was downright awesome in Peter Berg's underrated action flick THE RUNDOWN, which is about as good as PG-13 action flicks get. And while WALKING TALL was pretty damn cheesy, I thought The Rock was pretty fun in that one too. Looking forward to seeing him in SOUTHLAND TALES and GET SMART.
What does this mean for THE KINGDOM? An $18 million opening is probably a few million short of where Universal thought they'd open at. But I think it will have solid legs through the next few weeks, and reach a respectable $60-65 million domestic. While the reviews were harsher than they should have been, it's an audience picture for sure. I saw it a few months back and the crowd loved it...and I've read/heard similar things froms screenings this weekend. It's a no-nonsense procedural with an incredibly gripping, last-act action battle that is an action movie lovers dream. Full review later today.
Also, I watched Jake Kasdan's brilliant Hollywood satire THE TV SET on DVD a few nights ago and I have to say.....it's one of the best inside-the-biz movies I have ever seen. More on that one too in a little while.....
Go see a movie!