Bohemian Rhapsody is the Champion, My Friend

bohemian rhapsody

Audiences had just four words for the box office this weekend: Long live the Queen.

Bohemian Rhapsody, a melodious docudrama about the 1970s-80s rock band Queen and its frontman Freddy Mercury, performed a kind of magic thanks to its money-spending fans, rocking the box office for an estimated $50 million stateside. Add in its overseas take—$72.5 million this weekend alone—and you get the picture of a movie that wants it all. Add in the cash Rhapsody earned in the handful of countries it opened in last weekend, the Mercury biopic has already bicycled its way to a fat-bottomed line of $141.7 million. Killer Queen indeed.

While Rhapsody excelled under pressure, some others struggled to break free.

Disney’s trippy The Nutcracker and the Four Realms had a less-than-magical debut, tippy-toeing into second place with a $20 million take. That was a bit off its pre-weekend forecasts, which may force the Sugar Plum Fairy to use off-brand sweetener for any would-be sequels. Another newcomer, Nobody’s Fool, fooled $14 million worth of folks into seeing it. The R-rated Tyler Perry comedy finished third in its debut.

The box office might’ve been dominated by newbies, but holdover A Star Is Born continued to tell the rest, “Don’t stop me now.” The Bradley Cooper/Lady Gaga Oscar hopeful earned another $11.1 million to finish fourth. Star has shot to  $165.6 million domestically since its release. And while its run in the top five looks like it might be coming to a close, that run has been remarkable indeed. And really, who wants to live in the top five forever? (Well, every movie ever, but that’s beside the point.)

After spending two weeks at the top of the movie charts, Halloween slid all the way down to fifth with $11 million. The horror flick hasn’t bitten the box-office dust yet, but it’s just a matter of time.

Who wrote this?

Paul Asay has been writing for Plugged In since 2007 and loves superheroes and finding God in unexpected places. In addition, Paul has also written several books, with his newest—Burning Bush 2.0—recently published by Abingdon Press. When Paul’s not reviewing movies, he hikes with his wife, Wendy, runs marathons with his grown kids, Colin and Emily, and beats back unruly houseplants. Follow him on Twitter @AsayPaul.

Have something to say? Leave a comment.

charitysplace More than 1 year ago
@anonymous: I agree that the timing seems weird for The Nutcracker. It's too early in the month to pitch a Christmas movie -- I was shocked to realize it came out in early November, since I had thought it was a December release. I suspect Disney didn't want to compete with Fantastic Beasts and other releases later in the month, though I agree, Thanksgiving weekend might have been a better time. Though, I imagine Wreck it Ralph 2 will be "huge."
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Tricia More than 1 year ago
I absolutely agree with you - I'd been thinking all along that it would definitely be an R-rated film, and was pleased with the PG-13 rating. My adult son enjoyed the historical perspective from the 80's (Live-Aid, the AIDS crisis, etc.)
library_girl More than 1 year ago
I saw Bohemian Rhapsody last night, and agree with the conclusion in the Plugged In review. I enjoyed the music, and the actor's portrayal of Mercury, when I've only known him before from Night at the Museum, was riveting. But I felt extremely sad leaving the theatre. Our pastor talked to our youth this weekend about sexual sin and its consequences, and the amazing grace one can find in Jesus, and it's horrible that Mercury doesn't seem to have had anyone in his life to share that with him and that his life was spent trying to fill a void that only Jesus could have. What a tragedy! 
Dan Haynes More than 1 year ago
I am impressed by the sheer volume of Queen-related puns/references in that blog post. Well done. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

One night, as Clara was sleeping in her room, a sudden burst of a blue energy vortex appeared out of nowhere, blowing papers in the room everywhere. Startled, Clara woke up, and saw The Flash run out of the vortex, shouting out vague and criptic sentences.

“Claraaaaaaaaaaaa!” He shouted. “Listen to me noooooooooow! Rotten Tomatoooooooos! Rotten Tomatos everywheeeeeere!

Clara was too confused to understand what was happening.

“Am I too soon? Auuugh!” The Flash grunted. “I’m too soon! You were right about them! You’ve always been right about them! Fear them!”

Suddenly, Clara woke up, and The Flash was gone, and so was the vortex. Despite his disappearance, there were a couple pieces of paper floating to the ground, as if a huge gust of wind had blown them.

Could it have all been a dream, or had what she just experienced actually happened?
charitysplace More than 1 year ago
Darn. With Clara and a blue flash, I expected the TARDIS.

I never read Rotten Tomatoes or pay any attention to their ratings system anymore except after the fact, to see who I disagree with -- it seems too much like all the reviewers do is copy and paste from each other. If they're all agreeing on the same sorts of things, which are often abstract rather than specifically what's wrong with a movie, it makes me think it's a case of collectively trying to ensure most of them agree with one another rather than individually assessing a movie from their own perspective. What I want from reviewers is independence of thought, not the findings of an army of clones.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

Yeah, I don’t listen to Rotten Tomatoes as much as I used to. Personally, if I’m interested in seeing a particular movie, I see the trailer first and if it looks interesting enough, I’ll go see it. I try to ignore the critic reviews as much as possible so that I can make up my own opinion of the film.

Regarding The Nutcracker’s failure though, I think it comes down to two things.

1) Lack of Marketing. I saw a trailer for the film when I went to see Ant-Man 2 and I got a few YouTube ads and... that was it. I didn’t see any ads on tv or any major push for the movie.

2) Wrong release date. I think November 2 was not the best date for this movie to come out, and it would’ve been a smarter move to have Nutcracker and Wreck-It Ralph 2 swap places. If it came out on November 21, it would have given families a nice thanksgiving treat or a fun movie night after Black Friday shopping.

That’s just what I think though.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

Oh well, that's your problem I guess.
(Also, Paul Asay isn't cringy. Just look at this Movie Monday box office post)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

Like I said, that’s your problem.
Kal El More than 1 year ago
I understood, and love, that reference. And given RT’s affinity for blindly picking on DC movies, it works on two levels!
Julienne Dy More than 1 year ago
After PluggedIn's review, I feel more inclined to seeing The Nutcracker and the Four Realms.  I'm a huge fan of the ballet and the original story.  I was a little put off by the trailers, but maybe I can overlook that.
charitysplace More than 1 year ago
It's not much like the ballet.

Overall, I thought it was very pretty to look at and had a decent twist I did not initially expect, but it's certainly aimed at a younger crowd than Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland -- a lot of it felt specifically oriented toward preteen audiences.