It was good news for everyone but Steve Spielberg this weekend, with Finding Dory landing at number one for the third weekend in a row with $41.9 for the three-day weekend and $380.5 million total. It’s on pace to pass Toy Story 3‘s $415 million to become Pixar’s highest-grossing feature. Meanwhile, The Legend of Tarzan defied expectations (“decimating Mojo’s weekend forecast and much higher than industry expectations”-Box Office Mojo; “way above the tracking and way above most predictions” –Forbes) to gross $38.1 million for the three-day weekend.
Thanks to the massive, $180 million budget, The Legend of Tarzan still has a ways to go to earn out, but it did receive an A- Cinemascore, so its chances are promising. Critics mostly dumped on it (35% recommended) and I assume tracking numbers bought into some of the same assumptions, but silly as it was, I thought it did an amazing job turning a patriarchal white savior into an anti-colonial freedom fighter, no small feat. Looks like their only biggest mistake was shelling out for all that extravagant CGI primate punching. I say this as one of the internet’s foremost John Carter defenders, but if Disney had only cast Alexander Skarsgard in that it’d be a billion dollar franchise right now.
Down (but not out) in third was The Purge 3: Election Year, which capitalized on a purge-crazy populace to gross $30.8 million for the three-day weekend. That’s triple the budget in three days, in case you were wondering why they keep making these movies. It received a B+ Cinemascore, which is actually the best of the franchise. The first was a C, second a B. People seem to hate these movies but can’t stop seeing them. I’m sure there’s a lesson in that, but I don’t know what it is. People love silly masks? I don’t know.