Dunkirk hangs tough at No. 1

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE -

Dunkirk, Warner Bros.’ World War II epic, led the U.S. box of­fice for a sec­ond week­end af­ter Columbia’s The Emoji Movie was al­most univer­sally panned by crit­ics.

Writ­ten and directed by Christo­pher Nolan, Dunkirk col­lected about $27 mil­lion in U.S. and Cana­dian the­aters, ComS­core Inc. said Sun­day. The Emoji Movie placed sec­ond with $24.5 mil­lion.

The sec­ond week­end win is a boost for Time Warner Inc.’s film divi­sion, which is bask­ing in rave re­views and Os­car buzz for Dunkirk. The stu­dio’s sales this year are up 9 per­cent, buoyed by the sum­mer su­per­hero fea­ture Won­der Woman.

Dunkirk fell 44 per­cent from its de­but last week­end, and raised its to­tal to $101.3 mil­lion through Sun­day, ac­cord­ing to Warner Bros. Typ­i­cally, film sales drop by 60 per­cent or more in the sec­ond week­end. About a quar­ter of the do­mes­tic ticket sales were from Imax Corp. screenings.

The Emoji Movie ex­plores a hid­den world in­side smart­phones. Set in the city of Tex­topo­lis, the film fea­tures the emoji Gene, who’s try­ing to fit in with oth­ers that just have one ex­pres­sion. Co­me­dian T.J. Miller pro­vides the voice of Gene. Anna Faris and James Cor­den are among the other well-known voices in the movie.

The film cost $50 mil­lion to make, not in­clud­ing mar­ket­ing costs, and was fore­cast to gen­er­ate $22 mil­lion on its de­but by re­searcher Box Of­fice Mojo.

Crit­ics hated it, with just 8 per­cent of re­views be­ing pos­i­tive, ac­cord­ing to ag­gre­ga­tor Rot­tenTo­ma­toes.com. None of the movie’s ini­tial 22 re­views were pos­i­tive on July 27 and an­a­lysts at BoxOf­ficePro.com said they low­ered their es­ti­mates to $26.9 mil­lion from $30 mil­lion, pre­dict­ing it would come up short against Dunkirk, which they said would top the box of­fice with $28.5 mil­lion.

“Though Emoji was No. 1 on Fri­day, Dunkirk by virtue of its stel­lar re­views, en­joyed a spec­tac­u­lar uptick on Satur­day while Emoji saw its for­tunes fall al­most si­mul­ta­ne­ously,” said Paul Der­garabe­dian, se­nior me­dia an­a­lyst at ComS­core Inc. “Re­views and so­cial me­dia sen­ti­ment have an im­pact like never be­fore and while they can be your best friend, they also have the power to bring down a movie very quickly.”

The other new re­lease of the week­end, Atomic Blonde, placed fourth with about $18.3 mil­lion.The de­cid­edly R-rated ac­tion thriller star­ring Char­l­ize Theron as a lethal spy was met with raves when it de­buted at the South by South­west Film Fes­ti­val in March. Now the film’s wide re­lease is test­ing au­di­ences’ ap­petite for the stylish pic­ture that’s billed as a fe­male twist on James Bond and John Wick movies.

And au­di­ences seem pleased, giv­ing the pic­ture a B Cine­maS­core. Crit­ics have also gen­er­ally fa­vored the Sierra/Affin­ity-fi­nanced film, as it has a 75 per­cent Rot­ten Toma­toes rat­ing.

Com­ing in third was Univer­sal’s Girls Trip, with about $20 mil­lion. It has grossed $65 mil­lion do­mes­ti­cally.

Round­ing out this week’s top five was Columbia’s Spi­der-Man: Homecoming, with $13.3 mil­lion in its fourth week. It has pulled in about $278 mil­lion do­mes­ti­cally, plus more than $355 mil­lion over­seas.

Gene (voice of T.J. Miller) and Hi-5 (voice of James Cor­den) are among the cast of char­ac­ters in The Emoji Movie. It came in sec­ond at last week­end’s box of­fice and made about $24.5 mil­lion.

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