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Thompson on Hollywood

Box Office Top Ten: Action Holdovers and Animated Hits Edge Out Costly Bellyflop 'I, Frankenstein'

´╗┐Despite a flopping new wide release ("I, Frankenstein"), grosses for the Top 10 this weekend actually enjoyed a healthy jump over last year ($91 million up from $81), showing strength from two unexpectedly big Universal films ("Ride Along" and "Lone Survivor"), two animated features and sustained interest in several Oscar contenders led by "American Hustle."
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 26, 2014 1:04 PM
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Friday Box Office: 'Ride Along' & 'Lone Survivor' Trump Sole New Wide Release 'I, Frankenstein'

Two Universal films ("Ride Along" and "Lone Survivor") beat back "I, Frankenstein" (Lionsgate), the sole new wide release. (Ironically, "Frankenstein" is a redo of the story that once was a staple for Universal.) Holdovers overall helped lift the Top 10 for the day to more than 10% above the same Friday last year (just under $26 million) as 2014 so far continues to start out with some strength. With the Super Bowl next weekend and the Winter Olympics ahead, though, it's a tenuous bump, more so when once again another horror film underperformed.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 25, 2014 3:47 PM
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Talking the Oscar-Nominated Sound Editing and Mixing of 'Lone Survivor'

Peter Berg's underrated "Lone Survivor" received its lone Oscar nominations in the sound editing and mixing categories, but it's well-deserved. The fact-based adventure about a failed Navy SEALS mission in Afghanistan grabs us by the throat and never lets up. And the sound is among the most intense and immersive experiences for a modern war film.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • January 24, 2014 2:47 PM
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Box Office: Universal's 'Ride Along' and 'Lone Survivor' Top Weekend as 'Jack Ryan' Stumbles and 'Hustle' Rides Oscar Wave

Universal bounced back from its second big-budget dud of 2013, "47 Ronin," with two lower-budget 2014 releases that should pass the $100 million domestic mark. "Ride Along" and holdover "Lone Survivor" grabbed the top two spots, stealing the thunder from the spate of year-end Oscar contenders hoping to sustain their runs
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 19, 2014 3:39 PM
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Cinema Audio Society Nominations Include 'Captain Phillips,' 'Inside Llewyn Davis,' 'Gravity' and More

The Cinema Audio Society has revealed its nominations for 2014. Landing nods for live-action Motion Picture are "Captain Phillips," "Gravity," "Iron Man 3," "Inside Llewyn Davis" and "Lone Survivor." Check out the list below, including the animated Motion Picture category.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • January 14, 2014 10:28 AM
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'Lone Survivor' Stuns in Wide Release; 'Her' is Weak, 'August: Osage County' Strong

Led by "Lone Survivor," which grossed double its expected amount and looks to be a powerhouse for weeks to come, this weekend continued the steady business of the last few weeks. The Top 10 grossed about $114 million, up a tick from last year, when three new wide releases grossed better than all but one of this year's two new ones.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 12, 2014 1:21 PM
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Friday Box Office: 'Lone Survivor' Does Huge Business, Expanded 'August: Osage County' OK, 'Her' Underwhelms

With a huge $14.4 million Friday debut for their "Lone Survivor" (Universal), director Peter Berg and actor/producer Mark Wahlberg get the last laugh after their qualifying runs failed to impress critics or receive any awards attention for the film about a lone soldier's fight to escape after a devastating attack on his Navy SEAL team.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 11, 2014 1:59 PM
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This Weekend, Skip Machismo Spectacle 'Hercules' and Head to Indies Galore; 'Her' and 'Lone Survivor' Go Wide

Academy ballots have been signed, sealed and delivered. What to see over the next few days to quell your anticipation for the Oscar nominations on Wednesday? Indies galore, two robust expansions and a big-budget bomb await your eyeballs in theaters this weekend.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • January 10, 2014 2:36 PM
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Peter Berg Fought to Keep Brutal War Survival Thriller 'Lone Survivor' Real UPDATE

I have long been a Peter Berg believer. He is a gifted director who can now be forgiven for "Battleship," a misbegotten Hasbro/Universal concoction that he agreed to direct so that he could make his passion project "Lone Survivor." The indie-financed Universal release is a tough, unremitting, authentic, and intimate Afghan war film starring Mark Wahlberg, Ben Foster, Emile Hirsch, Taylor Kitsch and Eric Bana.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 8, 2014 9:59 PM
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Arthouse Audit: 'Lone Survivor' and 'August: Osage County' Hold Well as 'Her' Widens

As usual, this first weekend of the new year offered few new movies. The market is packed with awards contenders in varying stages of release, with Oscar-qualifiers that opened last week dominating the action. Most of the awards pictures showed minor drops or even increases. Most of them won't break wide until next weekend's Golden Globes weekend and the Oscar nominations the following Thursday. For these films, their results on this crucial weekend reveal how much further they might go.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 5, 2014 3:57 PM
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