View Poll Results: Top 5 Holiday Movies (U.S. Gross Only)

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  • Puss N Boots

    9 34.62%
  • Harold and Kumar : 3D Christmas

    1 3.85%
  • J. Edgar

    4 15.38%
  • Twilight: Breaking Dawn, Part 1

    21 80.77%
  • Happy Feet 2

    6 23.08%
  • The Muppets

    10 38.46%
  • Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

    11 42.31%
  • Sherlock Holmes 2

    18 69.23%
  • Alvin and the Chipmunks 3: Chipwrecked

    5 19.23%
  • Girl With the Dragon Tatoo

    16 61.54%
  • Adventures of Tin Tin: Secret of the Unicorn

    3 11.54%
  • The Sitter

    0 0%
  • Arthur Christmas

    0 0%
  • Hugo

    1 3.85%
  • Other (list it in a response)

    0 0%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston, MA

    Top Movies of the Holidays

    I know, I know..seems like the summer just ended. And after all, it's only October, and not even Halloween....but just like the Summer Blockbuster season keeps creeping backwards, so to does the Christmas / Thanksgiving season.

    This Friday, Puss N Boots opens, and there is NO DOUBT that this is a contender for top 5 over the season, and no doubt they are hoping it to still draw big come Thanksgiving.

    Given that, we need to start the pool now. So, decide between the typical holiday animation movies, the dramas, the action flicks, and the feel good stories. (and by the way, this list looks brutal...other than Twilight, and Sherlock, I think a ton of them have a great shot to make the top 5.

  2. #2

    top 5

    Not a very inspiring list ... went for the kiddie and the teen movies. The only one I might go see myself is Harold and Kumar (as long as I can find a theater that is NOT showing it in 3-S. I will not pay to see a 3-D movie!)

    I think I'll spend a lot more time watching my Christmas DVD collection:

    8. A Christmass Carol (the Alistair Sim version)
    7. All I Want for Christmas
    6. Three Godfathers
    5. Scrooged
    4. Christmas in Connecticut
    3. A Christmas Story ("You'll shoot your eye out")

    And on Christmas eve:
    2. Miracle on 34th Street
    1. It's a Wonderful Life

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Personally, my favorite version of A Christmas Carol was the one with Henry Winkler in it. I saw it once, and don't know if it's even on anymore....but he nailed it. Most Scrooges are just too mean to start with (Patrick Stewart being the best example)....Winkler was a workaholic who was mean to others only because he couldn't understand why everyone didn't feel the need to work as hard as he did.

    Another I would add to the list is When Harry Met Sally (more a New Year's Eve kind of watching, though)

    Also looking forward to Harold...though the 2nd was a major bummer.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    St. Louis
    Quote Originally Posted by Udaman View Post
    Personally, my favorite version of A Christmas Carol was the one with Henry Winkler in it. I saw it once, and don't know if it's even on anymore....but he nailed it. Most Scrooges are just too mean to start with (Patrick Stewart being the best example)....Winkler was a workaholic who was mean to others only because he couldn't understand why everyone didn't feel the need to work as hard as he did.

    Another I would add to the list is When Harry Met Sally (more a New Year's Eve kind of watching, though)

    Also looking forward to Harold...though the 2nd was a major bummer.
    I'm partial to the Christmas Carol version that starred George C. Scott, although we also enjoy the Alistair Sim performance.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Charlotte, North Carolina
    Not exactly a list of must-sees, is it? I'm doubting that the holiday season will make up for the poor summer turnout. Where's the LOTR entry to provide something worth watching this holiday season?

    Not many choices seem easy or safe.

    MI:4 - entry into a successful but played out series. I'm personally interested to see what animation genius Brad Bird does with the live action, but, well, it's Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt...again.

    Puss In Boots: Spinoff from a played out series. Take the best character and try to squeeze some box office $$ out of a stand-alone story. I'll see it at some point with the kids for the Antonio Banderas and Selma Hayek voice work. On DVD. If the reviews are ok.

    Twilight: I'm not sure how much you would have to pay me to watch this, but amazingly there are plenty of people who work that equation the other way around. Which is why Hollywood makes stuff like this. It's probably as close to a shoo-in as anything on the list.

    Sherlock Holmes 2: The first movie felt like such a missed opportunity. It wasn't a BAD movie, it just wasn't as good as it should have been. Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law are very well cast. My wife and I both have Rachel McAdams number 2 behind Scarlett Johansson on the list of women we'd risk ruining our marriage to be with (which is about reason number 73 I'm blessed to have the wife I have). Is McAdams in this or not? She's on the IMDB cast, not seen in trailer 1, seen in a single brief shot in trailer 2, her name's not splashed on the cast list in either trailer...I'm confused. Anyway, I'm hoping (but not expecting) that Mr. Madonna will get it right this time.

    Happy Feet 2: blech. My last choice. The first movie turned into such a manipulative piece of soap-box preaching. I have less interest in watching this than I do Twilight. But the kiddies will want to see the penguins doing a rip-off of Stomp all over again, so I put it in my top 5.

    Addendum: All my complaining about lack of must-sees aside, at some point I will make sure to see J. Edgar, if not in the theater, then on DVD. DiCaprio has become one of my favorite actors and has really been nailing his roles the last few years. I will be very interested to see him perform in a biopic on one of the more interesting and controversial Americans of the last century.
    Brian Zoubek on what was going through his mind walking to the free throw line with 3.6 seconds remaining in the 2010 National Championship game and Duke up by 1: "Fifty percent [of me is] thinking, This is what I've been dreaming of doing my entire life. Fifty percent I'm crapping my pants."

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of sports teams that disappoint in the playoffs
    Thanks to Udaman for putting this together. As most of ya'll know, I have been out of town and just got back. It is good that he did this before the Puss opening on Friday, which could be a real player for the Top 5.

    I see this winter as a very difficult one to call. There are a couple that I think are locks, but the awards contenders are the tough ones to figure out as they often show much longer legs and get a real push into January that boosts their boxoffice. Last winter it took The King's Speech 7 weeks to even reach the top 10 in the weekend boxoffice. But, it then stayed in the top 10 for 10 consecutive weekends and went on to make $135 mil.

    There are movies not even on your list that could be real contenders, like War Horse, We Bought a Zoo, New Year's Eve, and Immortals. I think Jack and Jill has a better shot at the Top 5 of winter than The Sitter does.

    Anyway, here are my picks--

    • Twilight - a mortal lock to make $250 mil+. The last one made $300 mil. I cannot see how this one does worse than that.
    • Sherlock 2 - the last one made $210 mil as a film launching a franchise. I cannot see how this one does not make at least the same amount.
    • Dragon Tattoo - there are 15 million copies of the book in print. At $10 per ticket, that is $150 mill in boxoffice just from folks who read the book... assuming no one ever shared the book with a family member or friend.



    After those three, it gets a bit harder.

    I think the trailer for Ghost Protocol looks awesome. It is the first live-action film by director Brad Bird, who is yet to make a movie that was not great (Iron Giant, Incredibles, Ratatouille). I have great confidence in him and in producer JJ Abrams. But... Tom Cruise is boxoffice poison. Seriously. I thought MI III was a really good film and it only made $134 mil because so many people don't like Tom Cruise any more. Neither Valkyrie nor Knight & Day managed to even make $90 million. That's bad for a big star like TC. If this movie had just about any other star in the lead, I would be picking it in a heartbeat. With Tom... I just don't know.

    I saw a screening of Puss in Boots over the weekend. It is ok -- neither horrible nor great. It has a huge head start on the season but I am not sure it will quite have the quality to get to the $150 mil it needs to be in the Top 5.

    I am petrified to pick one of the many kid flicks over the rest. Puss, Happy Feet 2, Arthur Christmas, The Muppets, Alvin and the Chipmunks -- I just don't know which of these to pick. Maybe none of them?!?!

    And then there are the superstar directors going against type -- Spielberg doing animation with Tintin and Scorsese doing family fun with Hugo... ordinarily picking either of these directors would be a decent move, but the pool of family films is really deep this season.

    Spielberg actually releases two major films the same week with Tintin and War Horse coming just days apart. I don't think I can ever recall a director doing that.

    I'll think a bit more before making my final choices. This is much tougher for me than the summer was.

    -Jason "good to be back on the DBR!" Evans
    Don't ask me why, but my mother is making me Tweet. Says it will be good for my career. So, follow my ramblings, mostly on the film industry, @TVFilmTalk

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston, MA

    Jack and Jill

    The previews look truly, truly awful. I mean cringe worthy awful. This is going to get absolutely obliterated by the critics. Torn to shreds. Sandler is normally gold, and has a big group that will go see anything he does (see GrownUps)....but this looks more like Mr. Deeds or Click....only not as good.

    I think it might break $100M....but probably won't.

    JE - you are right that it will likely do better than The Sitter.....but those previews look kind of funny, compared to this one. I just think Jack N Jill is going to tank. We'll see.

    As for the Top 5....Twilight and Sherlock are locks. I'm not sold on Girl With the Dragon Tatoo. It's really dark. It's a brutal subject matter. It will be rated R for sure (and not a comedy). It's also up against huge, huge competition (they are making a bad decision to release it when they are going against Mission Impossible, Sherlock Holmes and TinTin). This won't be in my top 5.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of sports teams that disappoint in the playoffs
    Quote Originally Posted by Udaman View Post
    As for the Top 5....Twilight and Sherlock are locks. I'm not sold on Girl With the Dragon Tatoo. It's really dark. It's a brutal subject matter. It will be rated R for sure (and not a comedy). It's also up against huge, huge competition (they are making a bad decision to release it when they are going against Mission Impossible, Sherlock Holmes and TinTin). This won't be in my top 5.
    You are maxing out at 4 out of 5 then.

    The foreign language version of Dragon Tattoo, which never played in more than 200 theaters, earned more than 10 million dollars in the U.S. -- the best performance by a foreign language film in 3 years. That was with zero advertising budget and subtitles.

    Like I said, there are 15 million copies of this book in print. Many books get read by more than one person, as they get passed around to friends and family. The audience for this movie of just folks who read the book make it a virtual lock to earn $180 mil. I agree that it is being released at a time when there will be tremendous competition at the boxoffice, but I will be beyond stunned if this film doesn't reach a huge audience.

    Yes, it is dark, but the audience knows to expect that. The trailers generated fabulous buzz and I have tremendous confidence in director David Fincher. I mean, has he ever made a bad movie? Writer Steven Zaillian has a great track record too.

    So, we've got a film with a huge built-in audience and one of the best directors in Hollywood working on a story that we already know to be excellent (though I think they will have to excise huge chunks of it for the movie). I cannot think of any way this movie is not a tremendous success.

    I may be working against myself in this contest, by convincing other folks to bet on this movie, but I consider it a mortal lock to be in the top 5.

    -Jason "this article makes it clear -- Fincher is producing a very dark film... but I think the Dragon Tattoo audience will appreciate that" Evans
    Don't ask me why, but my mother is making me Tweet. Says it will be good for my career. So, follow my ramblings, mostly on the film industry, @TVFilmTalk

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Damn you and your logic!!!!

    Yes, you are probably right.

    I just see MI 4, Twilight and Sherlock as absolute locks. That leaves 2 spots.

    Alvin (and its sequal) both made over $200M. I think that's highly likely this time as well (kids love it, and it is rated G, and it comes out Dec 16th, so no real "true kid" competition from that point on (both the other kid movies will lean toward the older crowd).

    Then you have Muppets (which all my kids want to see) and Arthur, and Happy Feet, and Hugo....one of these will get good reviews and be like Tangled was last year.

    I think in the end it will come down to MI4 v. Tattoo....and it all depends on the Cruise factor. Then again, we could have a sleeper come out of nowhere.

    Tough year, for sure.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of sports teams that disappoint in the playoffs
    Quote Originally Posted by Udaman View Post
    Damn you and your logic!!!!

    Yes, you are probably right.
    If it as not for Fincher being in charge, I would be seriously worried about this flick and would likely be in your boat expecting it to be too dark for the mainstream public. But the dude makes quality films and often does quite well when he verges into the dark (Se7en, Fight Club, Zodiac). I am banking on him as much as I am on the huge success of the book in picking this film.

    Similarly, I am probably going to pick MI:4 because of Brad Bird... despite the drawdown that is Tom Cruise.

    As for my 5th pick -- I refuse to pick that junk that is the Chipmunks! Those films are horrid. I know they make money hand over fist but I would rather be wrong than pick one of them! I feel the same about Happy Feet.

    I'll probably go with another director for my #5 -- perhaps J Edgar (Eastwood), Tintin (Spielberg), Hugo (MartyS), or War Horse (Spielberg).

    When does this thing end? If it goes until mid-February, War Horse may become quite attractive as it is getting some good Oscar-related buzz.

    -Jason "going kid-flick is always a good idea though-- I'll probably be dead wrong about something this winter" Evans
    Don't ask me why, but my mother is making me Tweet. Says it will be good for my career. So, follow my ramblings, mostly on the film industry, @TVFilmTalk

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Scrap Metal Hill
    Gotta go with the Muppets. The Muppet Family Christmas is a classic, so both young Turks and old Turks (some of whom just refuse to grow up) will be very interested to see how this one turns out...
    "Quality is not an option!"

  12. #12
    Can't wait for Dragon Tattoo. The books by Stieg Larsson were crazy good - the suck you in kind of good. The trilogy of Swedish movies with Noomi Rapace were excellent - the kind of movie where you can not wait for the next and she was amazing. Looking forward to Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara. I hope they are half as good as the subtitled Swedish ones. Even half as good will be awesome.
    ~rthomas


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New Bern, NC unless it's a home football game then I'm grilling on Devil's Alley
    Quote Originally Posted by Udaman View Post
    The previews look truly, truly awful. I mean cringe worthy awful. This is going to get absolutely obliterated by the critics. Torn to shreds. Sandler is normally gold, and has a big group that will go see anything he does (see GrownUps)....but this looks more like Mr. Deeds or Click....only not as good.

    I think it might break $100M....but probably won't.

    JE - you are right that it will likely do better than The Sitter.....but those previews look kind of funny, compared to this one. I just think Jack N Jill is going to tank. We'll see.

    As for the Top 5....Twilight and Sherlock are locks. I'm not sold on Girl With the Dragon Tatoo. It's really dark. It's a brutal subject matter. It will be rated R for sure (and not a comedy). It's also up against huge, huge competition (they are making a bad decision to release it when they are going against Mission Impossible, Sherlock Holmes and TinTin). This won't be in my top 5.
    Although it features an inexplicably committed performance from Al Pacino, Jack and Jill is impossible to recommend on any level whatsoever.
    24.gif24.gif
    http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/jack_and_jill_2011/
    Mmmm, BBQ!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of sports teams that disappoint in the playoffs
    I think all of us who did not vote for Puss in Boots are looking at 4-out-of-5... at the best. Puss did $25.5 million this weekend, just a 22% dropoff from last weekend. The film is showing extremely impressive staying power and now stands at $108.8 million in total boxoffice. The family film competition is about to really heat up (Happy Feet 2 this week; followed by Arthur Christmas, Hugo, and Muppets next week) which will take some bloom off the Puss rose, but I can't see any way this flick does not get to $150 million, which should be enough to get into our winter Top 5.

    Immortals had an impressive weekend debuting to $32 million... which is just ridiculous. Those of you who follow me on Twitter know I have been ripping this film to shreds since I saw a screening of it last week. It is a visual treat but is sorely lacking in every single other element that makes a quality film. We are talking about one of the most ham-fisted scripts of the year. Blech! Still, in terms of boxoffice, the $32 mil is pretty good and there is not a lot of young male competition hitting theaters any time soon (unless young males plan to take young females to see Twilight), but I just think word of mouth will be bad and this flick will stumble. It will make $100 million, but not much more than that.

    J Edgar did a little more than $11 million its opening weekend, which would ordinarily be a horrid start for a film hoping to reach our Top 5. But, J Edgar is angling itself as an Oscar contender and those kind of films have long legs. However, I have some bad news for the J Edgar voters -- I saw this film and it is not a strong Oscar contender. Frankly, I was kinda bored during much of it and it felt a bit like a history lesson (not in a good way). The acting was top notch; Leo may get a nomination and I think Armie Hammer (who played the twins in The Social Network) is a real Supporting Actor contender; but I don't think audiences will embrace this the way they do some Oscar flicks (like King's Speech or Black Swan, for example). I will be surprised if it makes even $100 million.

    -Jason "my bottom line from this week-- Puss looks good, Immortals looks doubtful, J Edgar is toast" Evans
    Don't ask me why, but my mother is making me Tweet. Says it will be good for my career. So, follow my ramblings, mostly on the film industry, @TVFilmTalk

  15. #15

    jack and jill

    Jason, you didn't mention Jack and Jill, which (according to Rotton Tomatoes) did a $26 million opening.

    Hard to see how that translates to much over $100 ...

    Also noted a huge dropoff in Harold and Kumar ... down to $5.9 million (just $23.2 million in two weeks). Not going to make ot anywhere near the top five.

    And on a personal note, loved seeing Roland Emmerlich's "Anonymous" tank -- just 0.6 million in its thrid week and a paltry $3.8 million in three weeks of release. I know it wasn't on our list and nobody thought it would be top five, but I still grind my teeth at such preposterous pseudo-historical bunk (it's so absurd, it could have ben on the History Channel!). It deserves to be punished at the box office.

  16. #16
    Any review of the Muppets coming? I am not ashamed to say that I am really looking forward to seeing them back on the big screen again. Hopefully it turns out better than some of the more recent Muppet outings. The first trailer (the one where you don't see the muppets until half-way through) and the parody trailers have been brilliant.

    I've been to exactly one movie in the past 3 years (thanks to Netflix and my home theater), but my soon to be 3 year-old daughter has become a big Muppets fan and we're thinking of making this her first movie theater experience. Probably matinee in case it doesn't go so well.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by PensDevil View Post
    Any review of the Muppets coming? I am not ashamed to say that I am really looking forward to seeing them back on the big screen again. Hopefully it turns out better than some of the more recent Muppet outings. The first trailer (the one where you don't see the muppets until half-way through) and the parody trailers have been brilliant.
    Some of the long-timers involved aren't happy with the the film. Whether they just want everyone off of their lawn or it's really a disappointment, we'll see soon enough.
    Demented and sad, but social, right?

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of sports teams that disappoint in the playoffs

    Muppets

    A blogger/reviewer buddy of mine, Renn Brown, wrote this very nice review. He saw a screening of the film at the Savannah Film Festival and gave it 4.5 out of 5 stars. I have heard some other positive buzz too, though some are saying it is a bit too sweet and syrupy.

    -Jason "I am seeing a screening on Saturday, I think. Will report back after" Evans
    Don't ask me why, but my mother is making me Tweet. Says it will be good for my career. So, follow my ramblings, mostly on the film industry, @TVFilmTalk

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Skinker-DeBaliviere, Saint Louis
    Tell me which films are good, not which ones make box office.

    A movie is not about what it's about; it's about how it's about it.
    ---Roger Ebert


    Some questions cannot be answered
    Who’s gonna bury who
    We need a love like Johnny, Johnny and June
    ---Over the Rhine

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles

    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by throatybeard View Post
    Tell me which films are good, not which ones make box office.
    OK I will.

    I went to the premiere last night of New Year's Eve.

    In a word, it was awful.

    Nobody should be surprised by that, given the premise and the fact that it is a follow-up to Valentine's Day. IMO, New Year's Eve is even worse.

    There are WAY too many plot lines, if you can even call them that, because they tried to squeeze in roles for so many stars. The stories were insipid. The "resolutions" of these stories were utterly predictable. A lot of the acting was amateurish (Jon Bon Jovi gets this much screen time? Really?) The dialogue was groan-inducing. There were a few attempts at production of tear-jerking moments which actually worked on some audience members, but they were pathetic, tired, and derivative. Worst, there was nothing funny in the entire movie. I watched this thing in a HUGE theater absolutely full of industry people who were there to support the movie, the stars, their friends and family members who made the movie, and even this crowd didn't crack a smile.

    Any questions?

    Well, OK, I will tell you that at the afterparty, Sofia Vergara and Katherine Heigl both looked stunning.

    I flirted a little with "Katie." Made her laugh.

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