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Update November, 2019


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Film Review: ‘Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’ claims No. 1 over ‘Joker’

 

This image released by Disney shows, from left, Harris Dickinson as Prince Phillip, Elle Fanning as Aurora, Robert Lindsay as King John and Michelle Pfeiffer as Queen Ingrith in a scene from the film, “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.” (Jaap Buitendijk/Disney via AP)

Lindsey Bahr

Los Angeles (AP) — The Walt Disney Co.’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” knocked “Joker” out of the No. 1 spot at the box office, but just barely.

Studios on Sunday say the film starring Angelina Jolie and Elle Fanning grossed an estimated $36 million in North America and $117 million internationally in its first weekend in theaters. The first film had a much stronger domestic showing, opening to nearly $70 million domestically in 2014, and the sequel was expected to earn more stateside.

Although, “It’s not as strong as we hoped domestically, but it’s a good start for October and we have a great window leading into Halloween,” said Cathleen Taff, Disney’s president of theatrical distribution. “Most encouraging is the fact that audiences seem to be responding very positively.”

The A CinemaScore — in contrast to the mixed critical reviews — suggests that the film could have a longer life at the box office.

Although it fell to second place after two weekends at the top, Warner Bros.’ “Joker” continues to hold strong at the box office. It added $29.2 million in its third weekend in North America. The villain origin story has grossed over $247 million domestically. Worldwide, it’s earned $737.5 million, and has already surpassed the lifetime grosses of “Justice League” and “Suicide Squad.”

Now the big question is whether the R-rated film will make it to $1 billion, but with a $55 million production budget, it’s already a massive hit for the studio and will likely also become director Todd Phillips’ highest-grossing film too.

“It’s already in territory that nobody thought it would get to. It’s achieved a box office that is above the wildest expectations of the studio and analysts,” said Paul Dergarabedian, Comscore’s senior media analyst. “Even if the box office stopped right now it’s an absolute, unqualified success.”

Third place went to another new sequel, Columbia Pictures’ “Zombieland: Double Tap” with $26.7 million. The R-rated comedy comes 10 years after the original, reuniting Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Woody Harrelson with director Ruben Fleischer.

“Three films earning over $25 million, that doesn’t happen very often,” Dergarabedian noted, although the weekend is down from last year when “Halloween” opened to over $76 million.

In notable landmarks, “Hustlers” crossed $100 million domestically this weekend. It’s the second STX film to do so this year after “The Upside.”

And buzzy, awards-friendly indies are continuing to thrive. “Parasite,” which opened last weekend, added $1.2 million. This weekend, Taika Waititi’s Nazi satire “Jojo Rabbit” opened in five theaters with a strong $350,000, the black and white Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe mindbender “The Lighthouse” earned $419,764 from eight theaters, and “Jay & Silent Bob Reboot” grossed $93,520 from one screen this weekend.

But the year is still down 5% from last year.

“It was a great weekend for sequels and great weekend for indie movies,” Dergarabedian said. “But we’re still struggling to get ahead of last year. We’re racing to the finish line here. We’ve only got 11 weekends left to go.”

Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Comscore. Where available, the latest international numbers for Friday through Sunday are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

1. “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil,” $36 million ($117 million international).

2. “Joker,” $29.5 million ($77.8 million international).

3. “Zombieland: Double Tap,” $26.7 million ($5.3 million international).

4. “The Addams Family,” $16.1 million.

5. “Gemini Man,” $8.5 million ($33.4 million international).

6. “Abominable,” $3.5 million ($9.2 million international).

7. “Downton Abbey,” $3.1 million ($2.5 million international).

8. “Judy,” $2.1 million ($1.3 million international).

9. “Hustlers,” $2.1 million ($3 million international).

10. “It: Chapter Two,” $1.5 million.


Dolly Parton, Chris Stapleton, Pink to perform at CMA Awards

In this July 31, 2015 file photo, Dolly Parton performs in concert at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn. Parton will perform a new song “Faith” in a gospel medley at the Country Music Association Awards on the Nov. 13 awards show in Nashville, Tenn. (Photo by Wade Payne/Invision/AP, File)

The Associated Press

Nashville, Tenn. (AP) — Dolly Parton will perform a new song “Faith” in a gospel medley, Reba McEntire will revisit her hit “Fancy” and Chris Stapleton will perform a duet with Pink at this year’s Country Music Association Awards.

CMA announced Wednesday the first round of performers for the Nov. 13 awards show in Nashville, Tennessee. Parton will also sing “God Only Knows” with Christian duo for King & Country and “There Was Jesus” with Zach Williams.

Carrie Underwood, who is nominated for entertainer of the year and will host the show with McEntire and Parton, will perform “Drinking Alone,” while Miranda Lambert will sing her new single, “It All Comes Out in the Wash.”

Additional performers include Eric Church, Luke Combs, Keith Urban and the show’s top nominee, Maren Morris.


Review: Neil Young back in his ragged glory with ‘Colorado’

Neil Young with Crazy Horse, “Colorado” (Reprise).

Scott Bauer

Neil Young is back with his old band Crazy Horse in all their ragged glory with “Colorado,” a beautiful, rambling, chaotic howl against climate change, division and hate.

It’s one of Young’s best record in years, reminiscent of 1989’s triumphant “Ragged Glory,” and his first with Crazy Horse since 2012.

Young, an old man showing no signs of slowing down at 73, cranks up both his rage and tenderness as only he can with the latest incarnation of Crazy Horse behind him. The band members have spent 50 years recording on and off with Young. The latest version features longtime Bruce Springsteen guitarist Nils Lofgren, who replaces retired 70-year-old Frank “Poncho” Sampedro.

But just like Young, Crazy Horse seems to defy the passing of time with the energy and emotion they bring to “Colorado.” That passion is on full display on “Mountaintop,” a companion documentary that captured the recording session high in the Rockies as Young and Crazy Horse suck on oxygen and work out the new songs.

The sweetly melodic three-minute opening track “Think of Me” could easily fit on Young’s 1992 “Harvest Moon.” But in a sharp left turn, Young follows it up with a shambolic 13-minute jam — “She Showed Me Love” — with echoes of earlier Crazy Horse adventures like 1969’s “Down by the River.”

As he has for much of the past decade, Young focuses his rage on climate change, railing about “old white guys trying to kill Mother Nature.”

On the standout “Rainbow of Colors,” Young offers some hope amid the despair. “There’s a rainbow of colors/In the old USA,” Young croons. “No one’s gonna whitewash those colors away.”

Young’s never one to whitewash anything, as he proves magnificently once again on “Colorado.”
 


UPDATE

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

‘Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’ claims No. 1 over ‘Joker’

Dolly Parton, Chris Stapleton, Pink to perform at CMA Awards

Review: Neil Young back in his ragged glory with ‘Colorado’