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Monday Mixer: Is Thor a 'Guardian of the Galaxy'?

Posted Monday, June 6, 2016 at 11:10 AM Central

by John Couture

I know that I have mentioned it before, but when you have two young children, you have to be very selective when it comes to seeing movies at the theater. Before kids, I would probably see two to four films a month at the movie theater. Now, it's much closer to one or two quarter.

I'm not complaining and I wouldn't change my life for anything in the world, but when about half of the films you see in theaters each year is decided by a four-year-old, you learn to be very selective when you get a chance to see an more adult-oriented film. Not and adult film per se, although the moniker sort of fits for the film that the wife and I saw this weekend, The Nice Guys.

Out of the 42 films that I've seen so far in 2016, The Nice Guys is the only one to earn the highest five-star rating from me. I'm sure that I'll have something more to say about The Nice Guys in due time, but for now, just know that my faith in the power of film has been restored, at least until the next unnecessary sequel angers me.

So, how did the rest of the weekend go? Let's check it out.

Box Office 411

Speaking of superfluous sequels (and alliteration), Paramount debuted Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows this weekend and the response was tepid, at best. The last Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was a surprise hit in 2014 with an opening weekend over $65 million, so this performance was a letdown.

With an estimated opening of $35 million, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows will struggle to break the $100 million mark and will most likely signal the end to this costly special effects-heavy franchise. Of course, audiences enjoyed the film much more than critics, so I suppose that if good word-of-mouth can help it, anything is possible.

Of course, critical acclaim and a decent audience reaction doesn't account for much if no one actually buys a ticket. Just ask those behind the film Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping. It's certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes and audiences generally like the film, the only problem is that those audiences have been really small. The Andy Samberg music industry spoof only managed $4.6 million and opened up in eighth place.

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping will most likely fall short of $20 million when its box office run ends. So, we've seen the top and the bottom of the new performers, what happened in the middle?

Well, Me Before You opened slightly above expectations with $18.3 million. The romantic tear-jerking drama starring Emilia Clarke and Sam Claflin was trending closer to $15 million, but strong word-of-mouth on social media helped it to beat those estimates and land in third place behind last week's top film X-Men: Apocalypse.

Me Before You could ride those positive feelings to a nice little counter-programming win versus the traditional Summer explosions and end its run with $75 million. That would assuredly be considered a big win for Warner Bros., which is quietly having a pretty good year despite the relative hiccup served up by Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Quick Hitters

  • We often talk about bad trailers around here, but this one might actually take the cake. This is the worst train wreck that I've seen in some time. If you were ever wondering what a mish-mash of E.T., Free Willy and The Love Bug would look like, then i present Monster Trucks.

  • So, they are filming Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 in Atlanta currently and director James Gunn sent waves of exhilaration through the interwebs with this post on his Instagram account.

    I'm starting to think this has nothing to being worthy.

    A photo posted by James Gunn (@jamesgunn) on

    Before you join in and start anticipating a Thor cameo in the film, Gunn was quick to squash those rumors with a Facebook post. And yet, I suppose we won't know for sure until next May, eh?