Jumanji: The Film That Wouldn’t Die


Last week, I suggested that Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was the Tom Brady of movies. But even as Brady’s New England Patriots fell just a Hail Mary short of a sixth championship—a mere hiccup in the team’s interminable 18-year dynasty—Jumanji did Brady one better and won its own title this weekend, its fourth in seven weeks.

OK, so Jumanji’s performance wasn’t quite Brady-like. The fantasy comedy collected a mere $11 million (estimated) for the win—a tally that, during the heady days of summer, likely wouldn’t even merit a place in the top five. But hey, it’s February, and a win is a win. And Jumanji just can’t stop winning.

Consider: Jumanji’s total North American box-office gross now stands at $352.6 million—the third highest-grossing film in the history of its distributor, Sony (bested only by a pair of Spider-Man movies). Released in the waning days of 2017, it’s now listed as last year’s fifth most lucrative flick, just behind Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ($389.8 million). But it’s dominating this year, too—so much so that has earned more than all 2018 movies combined thus far. (The year’s releases have collected a grand total of $304.5 million so far, led by Insidious: The Last Key’s $65.7 million.) And then there’s this curious stat: Jumanji’s the first movie since Titanic to be released in December and top the box office in February.

And we haven’t even touched on the half-billion that Jumanji’s earned overseas. All told, Sony’s little upstart comedy has collected $855.7 million, all without passing “go.” Which brings up another point of comparison between the movie and Tom Brady: Both are stinkin’ rich.

Obviously, Maze Runner: The Death Cure’s reign at the top of the box office was rather short-lived. After knocking Jumanji off the top spot last week, The Death Cure slipped to second with $10.2 million.

Winchester, the weekend’s sole new release, shot to third place despite its questionable caliber. It collected around $9.3 million.

Speaking of long-running success stories, The Greatest Showman continued to showcase some impressive box-office legs, finishing fourth with $7.8 million. Showman has raked in a total of $137.5 million into its cinematic three-ring circus, proving that Hugh Jackman doesn’t need to shoot blades out of his knuckles to earn a buck.

Hostiles, Christian Bale’s well-received Western, trotted into fifth place with $5.5 million to close out the top five.

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.

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