Whatever they are drinking up in the water at Pixar headquarters, the Walt Disney Company may want to start bottling and selling it. The CG animation pioneer has arguably never had a box office disappointment and, more impressively, hardly a critical misstep (although “Cars” and “Monsters, Inc.” had their share of naysayers). With the debut of “Toy Story 3” the Disney division has done it again delivering a mammoth $110 million opening. But we think we’ve figured out their secret formula: no one makes grown men cry more.
From “WALL-E” to last year’s “Up” or even “Finding Nemo,” the directors at Pixar have always found a way to hit the not so easy to find sensitive side of most men. After “Toy Story 3,” numerous male moviegoers weren’t afraid to admit the further adventures of Woody, Buzz Lightyear and their pals touched them in away only “Field of Dreams” and “Hoosiers” could. That’s why “Toy Story 3” is a blockbuster and the odds on favorite to be the biggest film of the year. That doesn’t mean it should win the Best Animated Feature Oscar over the superior “How to Train Your Dragon” of course, but that’s an argument we’ll save for another day…
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
1. ‘Toy Story 3’ (last week No. 5)
Pixar’s biggest opening in history and even with inflated 3-D ticket-prices that’s saying something.
2. “The Twilight Saga” (last week No. 3)
“Eclipse” is only a week away away from opening and the picture is looking at some of its highest pre-release polling ever. As this writer’s favorite Clipper broadcaster would remark, “Oh me, oh my.”
3. ‘Inception’ (last week no. 3)
We’re running out of reasons we can publicly say to keep “Inception” this high, but trust us. It’s a monster. And it’s coming.
4. MGM (not ranked)
It looks like the Spyglass team are the frontrunners to run MGM after it goes into bankruptcy. Summit was a close No. 2, but investors would lose more of a stake by merging with them. In the meantime, all hope for Mary Parent to keep running the studio with more capital seems lost. Mary, we hardly knew ya.
5. “Knight and Day” (last week No. 1)
The Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz romantic action comedy opens today with reviews seemingly all over the place. Those that love it, love. Those that didn’t, really didn’t.
6. “The Last Airbender” (last week not ranked)
Everyone knows one of the major end of June/July 4th Holiday releases is going to bomb, but its not gonna be “Airbender.” M. Night Shyamalan’s fantasy flick is on track for a $40 million plus debut.
7. Los Angeles Film Festival (last week no. 8)
Opening night got overshadowed by an unexpected Game 7 of the NBA Finals right across the street at Staples Center, but this year’s LAFF has more than survived the move from Westwood to downtown and possibly found its niche. How? A-list Q&A’s with Christophe Nolan, J.J. Abrams/Edgar Wright and Ben Affleck/Jeremy Renner.
8. “The Karate Kid” (last week No. 6)
If you thought “Karate Kid” would make more in 10 days than “Robin Hood,” “Sex and the City 2” and “Prince of Persia” would have grossed in their theatrical lifetimes, you need to save up to invest in the new movie futures trading exchange.
9. Comic-Con 2010 (not ranked)
“Tron: Legacy” is first out of the gate to confirm on the movie side, who’s next?
10. “Grown Ups” (same)
Something’s wrong when you find yourself trying to convince three suburban mid 30’s dads to make time for “Inception” when all they want to see is “Grown Ups.” That’s a hit people.
11. “Clash of the Titans 2” (same)
Hope you don’t have plans for January Sam Worthington, reports are Warner Bros. plans to start shooting the “Clash” sequel that early.
12. “Harry Potter” (not ranked)
How much do people love “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter”? Critics are saying it “outduels Disney” and Universal Theme park officials are stunned by people waiting in line for hours in line to get in. Can we say “expansion”?
13. “The Green Hornet” (not ranked)
Not sure what reaction Sony Pictures was hoping for after debuting the trailer this week, but we’re pretty sure they’d hoped for a little more enthusiasm than this.
14. “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” (not ranked)
Sweet international trailer hits the net and, more exciting, you can now create your own Scott Pilgrim avatar!
15. “Despicable Me” (same)
Looking to be the little animated hit that could.
Dropping like a rock…
*”Jonah Hex” (not ranked)
We’re not trying to be cruel, but how could a “Jonah Hex” movie with Josh Brolin, Michael Fassbender, Will Arnett and John Malkovich turn out this bad? And no, you can’t blame it on Megan Fox…
*”Marmaduke” (not ranked)
Whew. Thankfully we won’t have to worry about a sequel.
Movie Power Rankings usually appear every Tuesday on HitFix. Share your thoughts on this week’s list below.
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