The Reject ReportAs Admiral Ackbar so phlegmingly exclaimed, “It’s a trap!” You sit down in your seat at the movie theater to see the latest (last?) Saw film, you put on your 3D glasses, this triggers a wire to pull which drops a marble down a shoot which knocks over a pin which falls onto a switch which turns some gears which opens a doorway which allows a bowling ball to roll out which bumps into and starts a lawn mower which blows up and pops a balloon which causes a chicken to lay an egg which turns some more gears which opens Mikey’s front gate which turns some levers which opens a trap door which drops millions upon millions of dollars into Lionsgate’s pockets.

That’s how that works. At least, I think it’s how it works. Maybe I shouldn’t be covering box office reports.

BIG HITTERS

The best decision Lionsgate has made thus far with Saw 3D, what they’re claiming to be the last of the six-year, nonstop franchise, is moving it away from Paranormal Activity 2. Last year, when Saw VI opened against the wide release of Paranormal Activity, it opened to the worst numbers since the first film in 2004. With Saw 3D opening a week after Paranormal Activity 2 pulled in $40.6 million, it keeps horror fans from having to make a choice. Sure, some will be seeing the new Halloween horror franchise on the block instead of partaking in the 3-D traps. Saw 3-D won’t be back up in the $30-35 million range some of the films in the franchise were able to open to, but it will certainly be back up in the mid to high $20 millions.

This time, the traps come alive, but, unless this thing as ghost directed by David Cronenberg, I don’t think that statement is going to live up to its potential. Check out the trailer for Saw 3D right here, whether the traps are literally alive or just in your face:

FAMILIARITIES

The past, two weekends, both Jackass 3-D and then Paranormal Activity 2 had massive openings. The former had a pretty large drop last weekend, 57.7% to be precise. You can expect the same for the Jackass boys this weekend, which will put it right up underneath the $100-million mark.

Paranormal Activity 2‘s second weekend drop will be around 50%, as well. At this point, though, it’s all net gross for Paramount, who reportedly spent $3 million on the sequel. Look for it to top $60 million domestic total this weekend.

LITTLE OPENERS

$15,000. That’s how much Gareth Edwards’ sci-fi/monster/rom-com (probably a little light on the “com”) Monsters cost to make. It’s already pulled in $1.2 million around the world, and it will likely bring in a nice chunk of change based on its amazing word of mouth. A lot of people might be disappointed when they go see and it and realize it’s more It Happened One Night and less Cloverfield, but there will certainly be people who appreciate it for the incredible story it tells, anyway. Monsters opens this weekend in New York and L.A.

I know I have a format to uphold, but there are just some trailers you shouldn’t see before watching the movie. If you really want to see the trailer for Monsters, you know where to find it. What I’m giving you here, though, is the trailer for the Frank Capra classic, It Happened One Night. Enjoy it, then go watch the monster movie. Much love to follow:

The Millennium Trilogy films have been up (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) and down (The Girl Who Played With Fire). This weekend sees the release of the third and final film, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest. Here’s hoping it’s more the intrigue, excitement, and mystery of the first film and less the plodding, pointless, James Bond-esque villainy of the second film. Hornet’s Nest has the same director as Played With Fire, Daniel Alfredson, so the style seen in Dragon Tattoo probably won’t be returning. Nonetheless, I’m holding out hope this third film will tie everything together nicely. It opens in select cities across the nation.

If you want to kick your own hornet’s nest, or if you play with fire, or if you have a dragon tattoo, you might be interested in seeing this film. If that’s the case, you should probably check out its trailer first. See the trailer for The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest right here:

Also in limited release are Welcome to the Rileys, a Sundance favorite starring James Gandolfini and Kristen Stewart (you can check out Neil’s Sundance review), opening in the L.A. area, the Boston area, and New York City; Inspector Bellamy, a French crime drama starring Gerard Depardieu, opening in select cities and available on demand; a documentary on art called Waste Land opening at the Angelika in New York City; the new film by Jonathan Lynn, Wild Target, about a hitman who is trying to retire (thank God they’re finally telling this story) opening in select cities; Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields, a documentary about songwriter Stephin Merritt, opening at New York’s Film Forum; and Amer, a French psychological horror film, opening in New York and L.A.

Here’s how the top 10 is shaping up this weekend:

  1. Saw 3D – $26.5m NEW
  2. Paranormal Activity 2 – $20.5m (-49.5%)
  3. Jackass 3D – $9.9m (-53.4%)
  4. RED – $9.7m (-35%)
  5. Hereafter – $7m (-41.1%)
  6. The Social Network – $4.9m (-30.8%)
  7. Secretariat – $4.9m (-29.5%)
  8. Life As We Know It – $3.9m (-35.6%)
  9. Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole – $2.0m (-35.4%)
  10. The Town – $1.5m (-41%)

That’s $90.8 million in the bank for the top 10 this week, a definite drop from the past two weekends, but still a reasonable take for October. It also comes up as a 15.5% increase over the same weekend last year when Michael Jackson’s This Is It debuted with $23.2 million. By that weekend, it seemed audiences had already become staled on the nonstop barrage of horror titles, but this year could prove otherwise with Saw 3-D. It will likely be on top, and the numbers for the franchise could very well bounce back from the off year they had last year.

We’ll be back on Sunday night to go over the weekend numbers.

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