Bold Box Office Predictions: September 5-7, 2014

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Notable Openings This Weekend: The Identical

Have you ever played Madden before? I played a ton of it in college. Probably too much. Sometimes I got bored and played with the New England Patriots against the Oakland Raiders on rookie mode. It was fun to score on every single drive and do two point conversions after every touchdown. That’s what Guardians of the Galaxy is doing to the box office right now. It’s on rookie mode. This is just absurd. Look, the film is great, and it deserves all the success it’s getting. There is no doubt in my mind though it has made a lot more money than it should have because of its competition. It’s taking advantage of one of the most putrid string of movie openings I can remember in a long time. In what is considered the worst movie weekend of the entire calendar year, let’s break down The Identical with Ashley Judd and Seth Green.

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The film looks horrible. It currently has under 10% on rotten tomatoes. It’s going to bomb. Any more questions? Good. Let’s use this time to talk more about Guardians of the Galaxy.

I want to bring up what I touched upon earlier – Is Guardians of the Galaxy riding a lot of success due to good timing? While a great movie, I believe it has scrounged up a lot of box office due to awful competition. It’s one of the reasons why it got back to #1, which almost never happens. If you recall, Guardians’ second weekend dropped off dramatically, despite a lot of people thinking it would defeat Ninja Turtles. Had there been halfway decent competition the last few weeks, I believe Guardians would have dropped at normal rates, and not have been #1 four out of the last six weeks.

And how about the movie that dethroned Guardians in its second weekend? Ninja Turtles. The turtles have also benefited greatly from weak competition. Whereas Guardians had a huge critical and audience reception, Ninja Turtles was the polar opposite. Despite all that, it’s still raking in way more money than it would have, had there been decent competition. This proves that you don’t have to be a great movie to take advantage of a nothing box office.

I can promise you right now that studios are studying this data like crazy. I’m sure there are executives writing down formulas, a la Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind. I alluded to this in my Summer Wrap-Up, but the summer movie season is going to change. You aren’t going to see huge blockbusters crammed into a three month period anymore. Look at the upcoming Batman/Superman movie opening in 2016. If I were to tell you five years ago that a movie with Batman and Superman was going to open in March, you would have thought I was crazy. But BvS wants to accomplish what Guardians did – play Madden on rookie mode.

How Will It All Break Down…

Are you kidding me? Guardians of the Galaxy will finish #1. What the hell have we been talking about! Guardians’ biggest competition though might not be the box office, but rather the NFL.

TOP 5 BOX OFFICE PREDICTIONS

1) Guardians of the Galaxy — $12.5 Million
2) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles — $8 Million
3) If I Stay — $6 Million
4) As Above/So Below — $5 Million
5) The Identical — $4.5 Million

Daniel Cohen is the hard-boiled Film Editor for the Pop Break. Besides reviews, Daniel writes box office predictions, Gotham reviews and Oscar coverage. He can also be found on the Breakcast. If Daniel was sprayed by Scarecrow's fear toxin, it would be watching Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen on a non-stop loop.