November 17, 2006

New Movies and Box Office Predictions: Casino Royale, Happy Feet, Let's go to Prison

Bond is back, baby! I am very much looking forward to this, I am only afraid that I am setting myself up for a fall. Anyway, Thanksgiving is around the corner, and this weeks releases only have a short lead before the next round of films opens next Wednesday. So, I am sure that these films are hoping for a strong opening before the added competition arrives.

Casino Royale. (2006, 144 minutes, PG-13, action, trailer) OK, I cannot wait for this. I love the trailers and the edge that it appears to have. It is the first time that the book has been filmed in a straight manner, it had previously been made as a spoof that featured a number of actors playing the Bond role. This seeks to reboot the franchise, taking Bond back to when he first became a Double O. This follows him as he is sent on his first mission, to enter a high stakes poker match (in the novel it is baccarat), where the stakes are funds for terrorist organizations. This is the first outing for Daniel Craig as Bond, and the third for director Martin Campbell.

Happy Feet. (2006, 98 minutes, PG, animated comedy, trailer) An animated song and dance movie featuring an all penguin cast, sounds like fun! This one looks like it could be fun. Of course, it could also be one more CG film in a year that has been overstuffed with them. The movie tells the story of the Emperor penguins, each has a song to attract a mate, then along comes a little penguin who can't sing a lick, but is a marvelous dancer. Features the voices of Elijah Wood, Hugh Jackman, Britanny Murphy, Nicole Kidman, Hugo Weaving, and Robin Williams. It was directed by George Miller, who was also responsible for the likes of the Mad Max series, Babe series, and The Witches of Eastwick.

Let's go to Prison. (2006, 84 minutes, R, comedy, trailer) This looks dumb, in a good way. Well, maybe not good, but I think I am going to like it. Will Arnett (Arrested Development) stars as a man wrongly convicted of a crime, who is roomed with a career instigator (Dax Shepard) seeking revenge on Arnett's judge father. I am sure it is going to be stupid, but I think I will be able to forgive its shortcomings.

Also opening this week, but not near me:

  • After Dark Horror Fest: 8 Films to Die For
  • The Aura
  • Bobby
  • Candy
  • Fast Food Nation
  • For Your Consideration
  • The Piano Tuner of Earthquake
  • Snoop Dogg's Hood of Horror
  • Who the #$&% Is Jackson Pollock

Box Office Predictions

So, will Borat be able to make it three in a row? I don't think so, but then again I did sorely undertestimate its debut frame. I am thinking that it will place third this week behind a pair of newcomers.

Here is how I think the top ten field will play out:

RankTitleBox Office
1Happy Feet$27million
2Casino Royale$21 million
3Borat$17 million
4The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause$12 million

Flushed Away

$10 million
6Stranger Than Fiction$9 million
7Babel$4 million
8The Departed$3.75 million
9The Prestige$3.5 million
10Saw III$3 million

What are you seeing this weekend?


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