Weekend box office: 'Bohemian Rhapsody' defies critical assessment, easily wins weekend

    Gwilym Lee (Brian May) and Rami Malek (Freddie Mercury) star in Twentieth Century Fox’s BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY. Photo Credit: Alex Bailey.

    Weekend box office November 2-4, 2018

    (KUTV) Despite unflattering reviews from critics, “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the highly anticipated Freddie Mercury biopic, surpassed expectations at the box office this weekend to the tune of $50 million and earned an A grade from audiences according to CinemaScore. Is there a disconnect between critics and audiences? It’s hard to say. I found the film to be incredibly bland, but the reenactment of the live material was certainly thrilling. It is possible to be disappointed and still have an enjoyable time. Mercury’s story is powerful, even when it is fumbled. Worldwide the film has now earned $141 million. That almost triples its $52 million budget

    Things aren’t so rosy for Disney’s “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms.” The film, which is only loosely based on the original story and the famous ballet adaptation, also received poor reviews from critics, struggled to make $20 million. Those who did show up gave the film a CinemaScore B+, which suggests it might hold fairly well for a couple of weeks. Unfortunately for all involved, when you are a major release and you scratch and scrape your way to $20 million on your opening weekend, you are in considerable jeopardy of losing a rather large amount of money.

    Fortunately, if you’re looking for a silver lining, “The Nutcracker” did earn $38 million from international markets. Still, an opening weekend of $58 million against a production budget that is easily more than $130 million is a small victory.

    Tyler Perry’s new film, “Nobody’s Fool,” opened in third with $14 million against a $19 million production budget.

    Despite the passing of its namesake holiday, “Halloween” had an $11 million weekend. Domestically the film has earned $150 million. Worldwide its earnings are a robust 230 million.

    Bradley Cooper’s remake of “A Star is Born” continues to impress as it also added $11 million over the weekend. The film, which also stars Lady Gaga, has earner $165 in North America and $293 worldwide.

    Venom” brought in $7.85 million to push its domestic total just shy of $200 million. Worldwide the anti-hero comic adaptation has earned an impressive $541 million.

    As we enter award season, I’ll pay a little more attention to the smaller films that are gathering a bit critical buzz.

    Suspiria” failed to find an audience earning just $964,000 from 311 theaters. I never expected the film to be a massive hit, but did believe it would do better than $3,102 per theater. Amazon Studios might want to consider stealing away A24’s marketing department. That said, Jonah Hill’s “Mid90s,” an A24 film, averaged only $1,247 per theater this weekend for a total of $1.36 million. After three weeks, “Mid90s” has earned $5.8 in North America.

    Can You Ever Forgive Me?” did okay numbers as it earned $1 million from 180 theaters. That’s better than the tepid $1.4 that “Beautiful Boy” did in 540 theaters. Both films could have legs as we enter award season, but it’s going to be an uphill run for both films.

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