Marvel's Guardians Of The Galaxy obliterated the competition at the box office this weekend, opening 40-50% higher than most expectations, making it one of the biggest successes of the year and possibly one of the most important superhero films Marvel has released in the past three years. So, with Guardians an unmitigated mega-success, how did the weekend's other films fare against the intergalactic behemoth?
1. Guardians Of The Galaxy - $94 million. This film had the third biggest opening of the year, behind Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Transformers: Age Of Extinction. What makes this even more special is that both Captain America and Transformers were sequels of hugely famous franchises. No one outside of comic book fans had really ever heard of the Guardians before the first amazing previews.
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The film succeeded because of aggressively positive word of mouth and glowing reviews. Guardians is a testament to the power of hiring a brilliant cast, a solid director and relying on quality over the quantity of your explosions – not that Guardians doesn't have plenty of those.
2. Lucy - $18.2 million. While it didn't hold a candle to the might of the Guardians, it's nice to see two totally original sci-fi adventure thrillers top the box office after a summer stuffed with mostly mediocre sequels.
3. Get On Up - $14 million. Whoever programmed this James Brown biopic to open against Guardians had no idea how many people wanted to see Chris Pratt shirtless. Big mistake.
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4. Hercules – $10.7 million. While Dwayne Johnson is usually a solid bet as a leading hero, the film has failed to connect as strongly as it is necessary to earn back its $100 million budget while still in theaters. After two weeks, it's half-way there, but it will take a stroke of luck to keep this one alive.
5. Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes - $8.7 million. Everyone seems done with watching talking apes with guns. This weekend they wanted talking raccoons with guns instead.
6. Planes: Fire & Rescue - $6.4 million. Yup, this is also a film that is out.
7. The Purge: Anarchy - $5.5 million. While the purge dropped three spots from fourth to seventh, it's already taken in a domestic total of $62.9 million off a $9 million budget, so this thing was a profit machine.
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8. Sex Tape - $3.5 million. This weekend brought the films total to $33.9 million, still short of its $40 million budget. It will be interesting to see if it can break even before falling out of the top 10.
9. And So It Goes – $3.34 million. Diane Keaton and Michael Douglas exist, so they put them in a movie together. Some people saw it, and some didn't.
10. A Most Wanted Man - $3.32 million. Whatever this movie loses in terms of production costs, it's going to make back in the value of all the golden trophies it takes home.
What movie did you see this weekend?