New Releases: 'Ghost Rider: Spirit Of Vengeance,' 'This Means War,' 'The Secret World of Arrietty'
Last weekend, cinemas saw a box-office bonanza, with the top four movies combining for more than $150 million in ticket sales. Will similar success continue through the holiday weekend? Let's take a look at the new flicks this week in Moviefone's Weekend Movie Preview.
What's the story: Nicolas Cage returns as Johnny Blaze in this reboot of the 2007 blockbuster, "Ghost Rider." In "Spirit of Vengeance," viewers find Blaze hiding out in Eastern Europe. When he's asked by members of a church to help save the life of a possessed boy and rid him of Satan, Johnny steps up to help.
Box office prediction: The first "Ghost Rider" did gangbusters at the box office, grossing $228 million worldwide, including a $45 million opening weekend. With the return of Cage as Blaze, you can likely expect big numbers, especially since its biggest competition is probably from "Phantom Menace 3D," which made a rather un-"Star Wars"-like $22 million last weekend. $33 million
What's the story: Based on "The Borrowers," the acclaimed book series by Mary Norton, "Secret Life" tells the story of Arrietty, a very small 14-year-old girl who secretly lives beneath the floorboards in a suburban home with her parents. However, she's soon befriended by a grown 12-year-old boy, who attempts to keep their friendship hidden from the outside world.
Box office prediction: When the movie was first released in Japan in 2010, it ended up doing very well at the box office. (Its current total is at over $120 million.) However, that success may be lost in translation, especially when you have it going up against "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island," another kids' movie, which features stars children actually recognize. (Also it's in 3D!) $5 million
What's the story: Two best friends find out that they are dating the same gorgeous woman. Unfortunately, the men also happen to be the CIA's most deadly spies and will stop at nothing to make sure the other one loses out on the relationship. It's sort of like a slightly altered version of "Mr. and Mrs. Smith."
Box office prediction: Unfortunately, "This Means War" falls into a weird category: Men aren't going to want to see it because it looks like a romantic comedy, and women will stay away because it looks like an action film. Also, what would audiences rather see: two relative unknowns (Chris Pine and Tom Hardy) kicking ass, or Denzel Washington and/or Channing Tatum and Rachel McAdams? $13 million
"Bullhead," the Oscar-nominated film from Belgium, which follows a man in the depths of a steroid addiction, has a limited engagement this weekend. The equally harrowing "On the Ice," about a group of boys who witness a tragic accident out on the ice in Alaska, is also out. For the sports fans, there's "Undefeated," a documentary about a high school football team's 2009 season. Then for anyone looking for a little fantasy, they should check out "Dorothy and the Witches of Oz," which re-imagines a grown-up Dorothy as a children's author who discovers her dreams of Oz are actually repressed memories and is soon forced to battle the Wicked Witch of the West.