In 2015, Alabama Bibb County and Brookwood high schools decided to treat their fans to arguably the most boring basketball game of the 21st century. The final score was 2-0. Seven shots were taken during the whole match. One team held the ball for the entire first quarter, taking one unsuccessful shot at the buzzer. Who won? Who cares?
This weekend’s box office tourney was a little like that.
OK, so technically, The Hitman’s Bodyguard “won” the weekend for the second straight time. But let’s face it: The victory was the equivalent of scoring a touchdown by sitting on some sort of high-tech wheeled contraption and letting the earth’s rotation push the goal line underneath the football. The Hitman’s Bodyguard earned just $10.1 million. If Hitman had plunked down that number as recently as, say, the last weekend of July, it would’ve finished seventh—behind Dunkirk ($26.6 million), The Emoji Movie ($24.5 million), Girls Trip ($19.6 million), Atomic Blonde ($18.3 million), Spider-Man: Homecoming ($13.3 million) and War for the Planet of the Apes ($10.5 million). Yeah, a win is a win … but this is one that maybe Ryan Reynolds won’t write home about.
Indeed, it was the worst financial weekend at the box office in 15 years, according to Box Office Mojo. And with no major releases set for next weekend, either, things might only get worse.
Given the horrific numbers, perhaps it’s only fitting that Annabelle: Creation sits at No. 2—a haunting reminder of marginally better days at the box office. Annabelle stuffed another $7.4 million into her tiny pockets—enough to buy another creepy farmhouse in which to set up shop for the inevitable sequel. She’s made a total of $77.9 million.
You’d think that, given the weak competition this weekend, there’d be room for a plucky, sweet, animated movie to make some waves. But Leap!, the weekend’s most promising newcomer, fell flat on its face, collecting just $5 million. (Perhaps it didn’t help that its primary audience was heading back to primary school.)
A couple of other newcomers to make note of. Birth of the Dragon, the latest Bruce Lee biopic, had some complications on delivery, laboring to just $2.5 million and a ninth-place finish. And All Saints—a Christian film—marched into just $1.5 million. A rather disappointing finish, especially considering that this tiny faith-based flick currently has an 89% “freshness” rating on Rotten Tomatoes. This is why we can’t have nice things.