Paddington 2

In Theaters This Week (1/12/2018): Paddington 2, The Commuter, Proud Mary

Vera Farmiga and Liam Neeson in The Commuter

Each Thursday we look at what is going to be coming out in theaters this weekend, show you the trailers for the big releases, predict the box office winner and just generally give you enough of a carrot to pull you through the rest of the work week.  This weekend sees another Oscar contender go wide and three 2018 films, two of which definitely scream JANUARY RELEASE: BEWARE!

Tarji P. Henson in Proud Mary

Look, at this point if you get on any kind of vehicle with Liam Neeson, don’t expect to end up at your destination without mass casualties ensuing.  The Commuter dumps Liam on a train, and the situation soon derails (and the train if you believe the trailer).  Taraji P. Henson is apparently trying to run as far from her Hidden Figures character as possible playing a vigilante in the painful-looking Proud MaryPaddington 2 has a 100% Rotten Tomatoes rating and actually got Hugh Grant a BAFTA nomination for supporting actor, so if you have kids, this would be one to hop onboard.

A month ago, The Post looked like an Oscar lock, but the Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, Steven Spielberg drama has been losing awards momentum.  It was shut out at the Globes and barely recognized in this week’s BAFTA nominations.  At this point, as it goes wide this week, it may be lucky to get a nomination let alone win.  The front-runners right now seem to be Three Billboards, The Shape of Water, and Lady Bird.  However, with a huge gap between the Oscar noms on January 25th and the actual ceremony on March 5th, it’s really tough to say what will happen.  It’s one of the most wide-open years in memory.

The Commuter (Liam Neeson, Vera Farmiga, PG-13, 1hr 45min)

Paddington 2 (Hugh Grant, Brendan Gleeson, PG, 1hr 48min)

Proud Mary (Taraji P. Henson, Danny Glover, R, 1hr 29min)

How Did We Do Last Week? KT picked Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle to continue its success and surpass The Last Jedi, and Episode VIII’s reign atop the box office ended after three weeks as it actually dropped to #3.  Jumanji pulled in another $37.3 million and Insidious: The Last Key ended in second with $29.6 million.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi has now made $576.8 million domestic and $1.23 billion globally.  It is the highest grossing 2017 film in the US and should become the highest grossing internationally after this weekend.  All-time, it remains the #6 highest grossing film domestically and sits at #12 globally all-time with a good chance to crack the top 10 after this weekend.
(2018 Prediction Record: 1-0; Lifetime prediction record 86-10).

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

THE JUNGLE CONTINUES TO RIDE!  Each of the new wide releases targets a niche audience, and I think will all do decently, but Jumanji has gotten such good word of mouth that I think it repeats despite the newcomers.MV5BMjA3NDcwNDI3OF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNDY5MDkzNDM@._V1_SX1500_CR0,0,1500,999_AL_

6 thoughts on “In Theaters This Week (1/12/2018): Paddington 2, The Commuter, Proud Mary”

  1. I wonder what the problem is with the Post? I can think of several explanations offhand that take the blame off Steve, but I fear the actual problem might just be a dull movie. I might wait until I can stream it, because I’m just not feeling it from what I’ve seen. Film looks like a relic from before our world began to feel surreal and dystopian. Can’t believe that’s where I am with a new Spielberg film.

    Shape of Water is too weird to actually get anywhere. Truth be told, even though I think it’s wonderful, a really special film, Del Toro did not trust the fantasy enough, or something, was not content to let his abused magical creature, his beautiful but head-turning romance, and his psychopath with a pointless vendetta say what neeeded to be said about prejudice and racism. Imagine if Tim Burton had put a secondary character who actually had Asperger’s Syndrome into Edward Scissorhands, to drive his point home. In fairy tales, less is more.


  2. I passed on a chance to go see TLJ again with some people this weekend. As the weeks have gone by, the film hasn’t sat well with me. It’s nothing to do with the plot, either. It’s Hux getting “tooled” (I’m still aghast that the word was used in a SW movie), it’s Luke tossing the lightsaber over his shoulder, it’s the fact that Snoke was the only villain of any stature and menace, and now he is dead, and the other villains have all been turned into one or other of the Stooges. Watching Ren command the first order was like watching Serpentor command Cobra. Not Cobra Commander, you understand. Serpentor. The scene where Ren directs that entire legion to shoot all their thousands of lasers at Luke while the good guys get away is where the Fonz jumped into the air a full mile, and did cartwheels in the sky before touching back down on the water, having artfully avoided a great white. And Hux is now a Coen Brothers character. I cannot take the threat seriously anymore. The mythic heft is gone. And I knew that Luke was going to die. I knew he was going to sacrifice all. Don’t ask me how, I just sensed it. Having him sacrifice his life through astral projection, a force talent we never even heard of before… I don’t even know what to say. At least he’s on the same page as his sister, who can use the force to survive in the vacuum of space.

    I tried to put a good face on it, but there is no way. There were parts of the film that were good, even fantastic, even great, but it was ultimately bogged down by a desire to make the franchise feel more like the MCU, and a pathological need to scrap the old and push the new. God forbid Disney should own a property that has its own identity and history behind it. The tone of this movie was off, discordant, wrong. I desperately hope I can find it in me not to be soured on the whole franchise, the one I’ve been obsessed with since childhood. We’ll see if Disney keeps this up. If they do, fans have to reassure themselves that just because Disney tells us Luke did something post-ROTJ doesn’t make it so.

    I don’t want gloom and doom. I really don’t. I keep seeing kids with star wars t shirts, singing John Williams’ scores and pretending to fight with lightsabers. If they love the new films, and SW lives on, who am i to judge? I should be happy that SW might still be around after my death. Yet deep down, I feel sorry for these kids, because they are missing out. Star Wars used to be a myth cycle for our age, and now it’s just a shared movie universe.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welcome to where I was at after the second time I saw it. It sucks, huh? Fiscally, Disney has basically given up on Solo or it wouldn’t have let Deadpool 2, which it now owns, move to the weekend before it, but even if that’s great…..I do not see how the Saga can be fixed. With problems in the prequels and sequels, Star Wars isn’t the Holy Grail of franchises anymore. It’s just a franchise. The humor bug you have, I don’t get. It’s not MCU humor. The SW films have always have had humor. Yeah, they probably shouldn’t have used the world “tooling” but they shouldn’t have had Jar Jar step in crap either. “Page turner” is another phrase that doesn’t really belong in the SW universe. Snoke’s execution is inexcusable because he’s inextricably tied to Ben’s turn and the founding of The First Order and if that’s not somehow explored in IX in flashbacks, then that’s forever wasted huge plot thread. Where I am right now….I feel like I lost Star Wars. I don’t think Abrams possesses the ability to close a trilogy, let alone one with this many problems, but as the film is the #6 film of all-time, why is Disney going to care. They did such a stellar job with their stewardship before this, I’m still thrown as to what happened? Honestly, I kind of choose not to think about it because it depresses me beyond any other issue in entertainment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Of course it does, this is SW and it dropped out of the clear blue sky after we were expecting a masterpiece.

        The humor is so inappropriate that I almost walked out during the first 20 minutes. The crude stuff with Jar Jar only happened briefly, twice, in the middle of the film. Otherwise his scenes, in all thier stupid glory, still felt like SW. But in TLJ the wrongness would not cease. To pick a scene at random, look at the part where Snoke’s giant face confronted Hux on the bridge as Hux went to talk to Snoke in private… it cheapened both characters. It turned awesomely cool characters into Saturday morning cartoon characters. I hate these new villains. When you start a film with a hero comically humiliating one of the major bad guys, you ruin the bad guy for the rest of the movie and beyond, you turn him into a straw man. No SW movie ever pulled something like that before. It’s an MCU move. I love the MCU, but it was once a different animal. Not anymore I guess.

        Beware Solo. Who’s the one SW character who could most easily slip into the MCU mold? I don’t care that this is Kansan. All I’ve been seeing lately are venerable icons of film getting seduced by younger sycophants into laying down shadows of past glories. For all we know Lord and Miller were fired for being TOO respectful to the source material. Do you doubt that possibility, after TLJ?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. OK, dude, back off the MCU. The MCU has done no wrong. I still don’t see humor being in the top 10 problems with TLJ, but it’s not the MCU’s fault when it turned in three stellar installments last year, and Black Panther and Infinity War look amazing. Don’t mix the two and water down the achievement that is the MCU just because Disney dropped the ball on TLJ. There are things in TLJ that don’t belong in SW. There are 40 minutes of bloat caused by one character’s refusal to trust her plan to her subordinates. The whole film is a beat down of Poe and Finn. It uses the Force in at least five ways I’ve never heard of the Force being used in any canon or Legends context. Words and phrases like “page turner” (EVERYTHING IS DIGITAL IN SW EXCEPT THOSE FIVE BOOKS) stick out. Whole characters were just disregarded. It’s a film that diminishes continually in my mind, not just for what it was but what it will do. BUT….do not slop blame over to the MCU. We both love SW with all our hearts, but when Black Panther has managed to already outsell Civil War for advance tickets, we still have something special happening; something unprecedented in film: a 22-part story that looks like it’s coming to an amazing conclusion. Infinity War is far and away my most anticipated film of the year; there’s not even a close second. Right now, I honestly could care less about Solo, and I bet I’m not the only one. If JJ can fix this, I will eat every word I’ve said about him not being a closer, but right now, SW looks irreparable. I choose not to dwell on that, because it brings me down. The MCU does not, and only Iron Man 3 has disappointed me (and they even tried to fix that as much as they could). Hail it for that.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Dave I adore the MCU. I saw the latest Thor twice. Black Panther is going to be amazing, and the thought of fifteen plus films, and God knows how many characters, getting pulled together later this year… it gives me chills. I have been eagerly following this one right from the beginning.

        It’s just that SW has always stood apart, not just from the MCU, but from all modern blockbuster filmmaking. The MCU uses a modern vernacular. SW always felt out of time. My complaint is that Disney is making SW like other modern properties, not that those other properties are bad. My God, i don’t know what I would do without my MCU fix. Knowing a few are coming each year, like clockwork, is a comfort.


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