There was little question about what movie would take the number one spot this weekend. It was only a matter of by how much. Thor: Ragnarok continues its assault on the North American box office this weekend, pulling in another $56 million in its second weekend to cross the $200 million mark after 10 days. The movie has also added $354 million from foreign ticket sales before this weekend, which means it will likely cross the $600 million mark worldwide after two weekends. That is all the more remarkable because Thor: The Dark World only amassed $644 million in its entire worldwide campaign. Marvel made all the right moves with Ragnarok, starting with the hire of Taika Waititi who, it is worth nothing again, had made a $13 million worldwide from his last three movies combined. Marvel took a gamble, and it paid off exceptionally.
The drama in this weekend’s box office did not come in who took first place, but in who will take second place. It looked initially like Kenneth Branagh’s Murder on the Orient Express would narrowly take second, clocking in with $28.2 million. I’ll be honest, too: I’m totally surprised by that number. The film hasn’t wowed critics (it sits at 59 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) and audiences are even less impressed (it received a B from Cinemascore). I thought negative headlines about Johnny Depp might also hurt the film, too, but the target demo — mostly Agatha Christie fans over the age of 50 — turned out in big numbers (in fact, the under-18 set only made up 16 percent of the audience despite the presence of Daisy Ridley). Anecdotally, my in-laws — who haven’t gone to the movie theater in at least five years — actually turned out to see this one, so there is clearly some box-office power in moviegoers over the age of 50.