Weekend Box Office: Feb. 17-19 (Comedy 'Fist Fight' Lacks Punch + China to the Rescue!)
Photo Credit: Warner Bros.
Box Office

Weekend Box Office: Feb. 17-19 (Comedy 'Fist Fight' Lacks Punch + China to the Rescue!)

Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.

Exactly a year ago, there was a monster of a movie by the name of “Deadpool”. The film opened during the 2016 President’s Day weekend and pulled in $152 million. The 2017 President’s Day movie weekend has nothing like that at all.

“Fist Fight” – the comedy with Ice Cube and Charlie Day is easily one of the worst films of the year. Yes, I know it’s only February, but you have to take my word for it. It is truly abysmal. Pathetically unfunny, tedious, annoying, and painful with lots a “dirty” words in a woefully lame attempt to be edgy and outrageous, but instead reinforces just how baldy written the film is. I don’t know about you, but there’s nothing worse then sitting in a theater full of people watching a comedy in total silence. Not one laugh, chuckle or even a giggle. Just dead silence. The effect was more like a funeral, and even more so after the so-called “hysterical” outtakes during the end credits.

And yet perhaps it isn’t so surprising that the film opened in fifth place this weekend, with just over $12 million, most likely because potential filmgoers could smell a stinker. And expect the film’s draw to drop a lot next weekend, by 60% or more, once word gets around about how bad it is.

It’ll face even tougher competition with the much-anticipated horror film “Get Out” (which is getting nothing bur great advance word of mouth) opening next weekend, and in two weeks Marvel/Fox’s R-rated Wolverine film “Logan” (which is easily one of the best films of the year) hitting theaters as well. Yes I know it’s only February, but you have to take my word for it “Logan”is an absolutely fantastic and compelling film, with a great performance by Hugh Jackman, and I don’t know shit (if you pardon the expression) about Marvel. Does it have the potential to out-gross “Deadpool,” which totaled $783 million worldwide? We’ll know more in a few weeks.

The No.1 film again this weekend was, as expected, “The LEGO Batman Movie” which made just over $34 million, grossing almost $100 million domestic in less than two weeks, and another $72 million so far internationally. “Fifty Shades Darker” which, to no one’s surprise, dropped off a lot (55%) was still good enough to come in second with $21 million, and almost $90 million stateside to date, and an additional $172 million overseas.

In third place was the-white-guy-saves-all-of-China (Where would we be without them?) film “The Great Wall” starring Matt Damon fighting CGI dragons, and helping to build the Great Wall of China. The film only made $18 million its opening weekend, but the film was actually made for the international – especially the Asian – market; and it’s been very successful on that front, grossing $244 million overseas to date, $170.4 million of that from China alone. The same happened to Vin Diesel’s “xXx: The Return of Xander Cage” which fizzled here in the US, making only $44 million. But it’s made an additional $263 million overseas, with almost $100 million of that in China alone. One has to begin to wonder if there is a market for black films in Asia, and how well they will perform there.

The other major studio release was Fox’s two and half hour horror/fantasy film “A Cure for Wellness”, but it completely tanked with just $4.2 million; although a low turnout was expected since the film has a *no name* lead (Dane DeHaan) and the studio didn’t do the best job promoting the film, seemingly unsure of how to properly market it.

Now for the “black stuff”; “Hidden Figures” just keeps rolling along, dropping only 11% from last week, earning $7 million this weekend and $142.6 million so far stateside; add another $21 million from overseas. As for “Fences” the film has grossed a very respectable $55 million so far, and is just now beginning to open internationally with just under $500,000 in only three countries to date; interestingly, Australia is the highest grossing overseas country, with the UK coming in second.

The James Baldwin documentary “I’m Am Not You Negro” has a domestic box office total so far of $2.3 million, while “Moonlight” actually went up 19% at the box office from last week, thanks to an increase of 100 screens, for a total of $21.2 million.

This weekend’s top 12 grossers follow below:

1) The LEGO Batman Movie WB $34,225,000 Total: $98,791,314

2) Fifty Shades Darker Uni. $20,966,845 Total: $89,663,300

3) The Great Wall Uni. $18,079,140

4) John Wick: Chapter Two LG/S $16,500,000 Total: $58,692,083

5) Fist Fight WB (NL) $12,015,000

6) Hidden Figures Fox $7,100,000 Total: $142,591,830

7) Split Uni. $7,038,400 Total: $123,603,930

8) A Dog’s Purpose Uni. $5,560,855 Total: $50,676,365

9) La La Land LG/S $4,500,000 Total: $133,504,066

10) A Cure for Wellness Fox $4,200,000

11) Lion Wein. $4,123,000 Total: $36,378,483

12) Rings Par. $2,250,000 Total: $25,673,218

Shadow and Act is a website dedicated to cinema, television and web content of Africa and its global Diaspora. With daily news, interviews, in-depth investigations into the audiovisual industry, and more, Shadow and Act promotes content created by and about people of African descent throughout the world.

© 2022 Shadow & Act. All rights reserved.