Jumanji Takes It to the Next Level

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jumanji movie monday

Elsa, that Disney maven of ice and snow, is a pretty powerful princess, to be sure. She and her chilly cohorts spent three whole weeks warding off all cinematic comers. But sometimes even the nicest of ice crystals can get knocked off its perch by a well-placed Rock.

Jumanji: The Next Level ended Frozen II’s reign atop the box office in convincing fashion, roaring to an estimated $60.1 million in North America to finish No. 1. That’s more than twice what the last Jumanji movie made during its weekend debut (Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, which, like the latest, starred Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson), and more than five times what the original, Robin Williams-fronted Jumanji earned way back in its opening weekend in 1995.

Frozen II, meanwhile, slid like I do on an icy sidewalk. It didn’t slide very far, mind you—just to No. 2. Elsa, Anna and company collected another $19.2 million, pushing the film’s domestic total to $366.5 million. That lands it at No. 6 for the year, edging past stablemate Aladdin. And if you add in overseas receipts, Frozen II has pushed its worldwide gross to more than $1 billion. Yes, the film’s Olaf-ing all the way to the bank.

The whodunit Knives Out slipped a little itself, down to third place with nearly $9.3 million.

Two newcomers closed out the top five, and both had aspired to be a little higher in the countdown. Richard Jewell, directed by Clint Eastwood, earned just $5 million, according to early estimates, finishing well below studio expectations. The movie, mired in controversy over its depiction of journalist Kathy Scruggs, perhaps proved that there is such a thing as bad publicity. A movie predicated on a real-life bombing seems, ironically, to be a bit of a bomb itself.

Still, it fared better than the horror thriller Black Christmas, a remake of a 1974 film of the same name. The reboot banked just $4.4 million—a dismal opening indeed for the film’s distributor, Blumhouse. The last time a major movie from the studio had done quite this badly, according to Box Office Mojo was 2015’s Jem and the Holograms.

Remember that one? Yeah, I thought not.

Can Jumanji: The Next Level hold on through the next weekend? Anything’s possible, I suppose. But given the approaching (ahem) Force of the Christmas docket, it seems unlikely.

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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seraph_unsung 3 months ago
I know this is off-topic and not the right place, but to the staff of Plugged In, I wanted to give my heartfelt thanks.  I was browsing through some recent movie and TV reviews (I can no longer find which show this was for), when you went out of your way to give a tactful warning of certain kinds of content that could be triggering to people who had been impacted by certain kinds of abuse, without laughing at or mocking the idea of a 'trigger warning' (something that—and, to be sure, it's possible to be taken to excess—I've seen some conservatives treat as infantile).  Thank you for showing this concern for your readers' emotional health while at the same time educating them in fairness about the content a story chooses to employ in order to convey its intent.
Anonymous 3 months ago
The only movies out right now I really want to see are A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Jumanji: The Next Level and Richard Jewell. I could care less about the new Star Wars, and the movie version of Cats seems utterly ridiculous based on the previews and looks like it has some of the worst costumes I've ever seen in my life.
Chuck Anziulewicz 3 months ago
"Jumanji: The Next Level" looks entirely too silly to me. But over the weekend I saw "Jojo Rabbit" and absolutely loved it. And I was gratified by the positive review of it here at Plugged In. That kind of audacious black comedy is something we don't see in theaters very often. An utterly original film.