The latest movies, new Netflix series, and other new releases coming to the streaming giant this September include critically-acclaimed series launching their latest seasons on the streamer this month ahead of their new fall seasons coming to cable: the ninth seasons of both The Walking Dead and Shameless, and American Horror Story: Apocalypse. The final season of Gotham is also now available for binging.

Plus, limited series Unbelievable, film In the Shadow of the Moon, and Ryan Murphy’s The Politician are among the new Netflix originals in September. And there is a slew of new Certified Fresh movies coming, too: Mystic River, Superbad, and two Lord of the Rings films among them.

Read on if you’re looking for the latest movies and binge-worthy shows on Netflix in September.


HIGHLIGHTS


The Walking Dead: Season 9 (2018) 89%

Why You Should Watch: Recovering from a Tomatometer slump over recent seasons, the series’ ninth season was Certified Fresh at 91%. Andrew Lincoln, who has played lead Rick Grimes since season 1, said goodbye to the weekly series in this season (he’ll return to the role for feature films, however), while Samantha Morton (Minority Report) said hello to her lethal new role as the The Whisperers leader Alpha. Get caught up on the horror series with a quick binge before season 10 starts on AMC on October 6.

Description: The communities encounter a formidable force that threatens the very idea of civilization that the survivors have worked so hard to build.

Premiere Date: Sunday, Sept. 1, 2019


Elite: Season 2 (2019) 92%

Why You Should Watch: Guilty pleasure high school drama Elite scored 100% on 11 reviews for its first season. Season 2 of the binge-worthy Spanish import promises more of the same.

Description: In the wake of a classmate’s death, a student vanishes, allegiances shift, new friends join the drama, and dark secrets become too difficult to contain.

Premiere Date: Friday, Sept. 6, 2019


Unbelievable: Season 1 (2019) 98%

Why You Should Watch: Just off of 89% Certified Fresh 2018 horror film Hereditary, Toni Collette stars as a detective alongside fellow Emmy-winner Merritt Wever (Godless). Plus, Kaitlyn Dever, a standout in 97% Certified Fresh Booksmart, costars as a troubled teenager in this drama inspired by real events documented in The Marshall Project and ProPublica Pulitzer Prize-winning article “An Unbelievable Story of Rape,” written by T. Christian Miller and Ken Armstrong, and This American Life podcast episode “Anatomy of Doubt.”

Description: When teenager Marie Adler (Dever) files a police report claiming she’s been sexually assaulted by an intruder in her home, the investigating detectives, as well as the people closest to her, come to doubt the truth of her story. Meanwhile, hundreds of miles away, detectives Grace Rasmussen and Karen Duvall (Collette and Wever) meet while investigating an eerily similar pair of intruder rapes and partner to catch a potential serial rapist. With episodes directed by Oscar nominees Susannah Grant and Lisa Cholodenko, Unbelievable is a story of unspeakable trauma, unwavering tenacity, and astounding resilience.

Premiere Date: Friday, Sept. 13, 2019


In the Shadow of the Moon (2019) 57%

Why You Should Watch: Boyd Holbrook starred in the first two of three Certified Fresh seasons of Netflix original Narcos. As DEA Agent Steve Murphy, he worked to bring down Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar in the acclaimed series that also starred Pedro Pascal (Game of Thrones). Here, Holbrook takes on another law enforcement role — this time to catch a serial killer. Michael C. Hall (Dexter) and Cleopatra Coleman (The Last Man on Earth) costar in the film directed by Jim Mickle (We Are What We Are), whose Tomatometer average as writer/director/producer on four films and one TV series sits at a solid 81%.

Description: In 1988, Philadelphia police officer Thomas Lockhart (Boyd Holbrook), hungry to become a detective, begins tracking a serial killer who mysteriously resurfaces every nine years. But when the killer’s crimes begin to defy all scientific explanation, Locke’s obsession with finding the truth threatens to destroy his career, his family, and possibly his sanity. The genre-blending psychological thriller examines the power of time, and how its passing can either bring us together or tear us apart.

Premiere Date: Friday, Sept. 27, 2019


The Politician: Season 1 (2019) 58%

Why You Should Watch: TV super-producer Ryan Murphy’s first original series for Netflix stars Ben Platt, 2017 best actor in a musical Tony Award winner for Dear Evan Hansen. Platt also has an Emmy and a Grammy and is one Oscar away from EGOTing. The comedy also stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Lange, and Zoey Deutch.

Description: Payton Hobart (Platt), a wealthy student from Santa Barbara, California, has known since age seven that he’s going to be President of the United States. But first he’ll have to navigate the most treacherous political landscape of all: Saint Sebastian High School. To get elected Student Body President, secure a spot at Harvard, and stay on his singular path to success, Payton will have to outsmart his ruthless classmates without sacrificing his own morality and carefully crafted image.

Premiere Date: Friday, Sept. 27, 2019


Available 9/1

300 (2006) 61%
68 Kill (2017) 70%
American Psycho (2000) 69%
Dante's Peak (1997) 26%
Elena (2012) 81%
For the Birds (2018) 93%
Igor (2008) 39%
Loo Loo Kids: Johny & Friends Musical
Adventures: Season 1
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 6 (2019) 93%
Moving Art: Season 3
My Sister's Keeper (2009) 48%
Mystic River (2003) 88%
Olmo & the Seagull (2015)
Open Season (2006) 48%
Rebel in the Rye (2017) 29%
Scream: Season 3 (2019) 40%
Serial Killer with Piers Morgan: Season 1
Spookley the Square Pumpkin (2004)
Stripes (1981) 88%
Superbad (2007) 88%
The Lake House (2006) 35%
The Last Exorcism (2010) 72%
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) 93%
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) 95%
The Saint (1997) 30%
The Taking of Pelham 123 (2009) 51%
The Walking Dead: Season 9 (2018) 89%
Uncle Naji in UAE
You Don't Mess With the Zohan (2008) 37%


Available 9/4

The World We Make (2019)

Available 9/6

Archibald’s Next Big Thing: Season 1
Article 15 (2019) 90%
Elite: Season 2 (2019) 92%
Hip Hop Evolution: Season 3
Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father: Season 3
The Spy


Available 9/9

Norm of the North: King Sized Adventure (2019)

Available 9/10

Bill Burr: Paper Tiger
Eat Pray Love (2010) 36%
Evelyn
Shameless: Season 9 (2018) 73%
Terrace House: Tokyo 2019-2020


Available 9/12

The I-Land
The Mind, Explained
Turbo (2013) 67%


Available 9/13

The Chef Show: Volume 2
Head Count (2018) 68%
Hello, Privilege. It’s Me, Chelsea
I'm Sorry: Season 2 (2019)
Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress: The Battle of Unato
The Ranch: Part 7
Tall Girl
Unbelievable: Season 1 (2019) 98%


Available 9/14

We Have Always Lived in the Castle (2018) 87%

Available 9/15

Los Tigres del Norte at Folsom Prison
Steal a Pencil for Me (2007) 95%
Surviving R. Kelly: Season 1 (2019) 95%


Available 9/17

Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives (2017) 82%
The Last Kids on Earth


Available 9/18

Come and Find Me (2016) 64%

Available 9/19

Océans


Available 9/20

Between Two Ferns: The Movie (2019) 75%
Criminal
Daddy Issues (2018) 89%
Disenchantment: Part 2 (2018) 73%
Fastest Car: Season 2 (2019)
Inside Bill’s Brain: Decoding Bill Gates
Las del hockey


Available 9/21

Sarah's Key (2010) 72%

Available 9/23

Team Kaylie


Available 9/24

American Horror Story: Apocalypse (2018) 79%
Jeff Dunham: Beside Himself


Available 9/25

Abstract: The Art of Design 100%: Season 2
Birders
() %
Furie (2019) 95%
Glitch 80%: Season 3


Available 9/26

Explained : Season 2
The Grandmaster (2013) 78%


Available 9/27

Bard of Blood
Dragons: Rescue Riders
El marginal : Season 3
In the Shadow of the Moon (2019) 57%
Locked Up : Season 4
The Politician: Season 1 (2019) 58%
Skylines
Sturgill Simpson Presents Sound & Fury
Vis a vis: Season 4


Available 9/30

Gotham: Season 5 (2019) 85%
Mo Gilligan: Momentum


TV SHOWS AND MOVIES LEAVING NETFLIX IN SEPTEMBER


Leaving 9/1/19

2 Fast 2 Furious (2003) 36%
A Clockwork Orange (1971) 87%
Angels & Demons (2009) 37%
Baby Animals in the Wild: Season 1 ()
Batman Begins (2005) 84%
Battlefield Earth (2000) 3%
Californication 57%
Eight Legged Freaks (2002) 47%
Emma (1996) 85%
Ghost Ship (2002) 16%
Gothika (2003) 15%
Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay (2008) 52%
Hercules (1997) 84%
High-Rise (2015) 60%
Magic Mike (2012) 79%
Meet Joe Black (1998) 45%
Miami Vice (2006) 46%
Monster House (2006) 75%
Mr. Mom (1983) 75%
Mulan (1998) 86%
Music and Lyrics (2007) 63%
Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist (2008) 74%
Revolutionary Road (2008) 67%
Stuart Little (1999) 67%
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) 86%
Sydney White (2007) 35%
The Dark Knight (2008) 94%
The Fast and the Furious (2001) 54%
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) 38%
The First Monday in May (2016) 77%
The Hangover (2009) 78%


Leaving 9/4

Kicking and Screaming (1995) 57%

Leaving 9/6

Honey 3 (2016)

Leaving 9/9

Leroy & Stitch (2006) 40%
Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch (2005) 40%


Leaving 9/14

Pocahontas (1995) 55%
Tulip Fever (2017) 10%


Leaving 9/15

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries

Leaving 9/16

Super Genius: Season 1
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003) 37%


Leaving 9/20

Carol (2015) 94%

Leaving 9/23

The Mysteries of Laura: Season 2 (2015)

Leaving 9/24

Portlandia 94%: Season 1-5


Leaving 9/25

Parenthood 88%: Season 1-6


Leaving 9/26

Bachelorette (2012) 57%
Night School (2016) 95%


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The good news: a slew of new releases await you this week on video shelves! The bad news: woefully few of them are Fresh. That said, you’ve got your pick of twisted horror (Saw IV), harmless star-driven comedy (The Game Plan, Sydney White), French period romance (Moliere), and more. Choose wisely!


Saw IV

Tomatometer: 20%

Jigsaw is back — not for the first time, not for the last time — in the fourth installment of the Saw franchise, helmed by series vet Darren Lynn Bousman. Once again, the metaphor-loving killer pits his victims against themselves in the most meticulously-crafted death traps in movie history, but this time around there’s a twist: Jigsaw died in Saw III. Que incroyable! Gore-hounds will delight in the unrated DVD edition and bonus features like deleted scenes, Bousman’s audio commentary, and his behind-the-scenes video diary.

 


The Game Plan

Tomatometer: 27%

There was a time when The People’s Champion could inspire awe with an arch of the eyebrow; now, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson commands multiplexes with family fare like this Disney comedy, about a pro football player whose bachelor existence is threatened by the arrival of a daughter he never knew he had.

 

Sydney White

Tomatometer: 39%

For more in the vein of lukewarm family-friendly fare this week, look no further than Sydney White, starring former Nickelodeon star Amanda Bynes. A retelling of the classic Snow White story, the college-set rom-com failed to impress most critics, due largely to Joe Nussbaum’s by-the-numbers direction and a predictable plot heavy on Snow White citations. Watch this if you crave 2 hours of lightweight movie watching, or take a leap and check out…

 

Moliere


Tomatometer: 69%

It’s French, it’s a period piece, it’s a romantic drama based on the life of a great artist. But Moliere, starring Romain Duris and Ludivine Sagnier, is also one of only a few of the week’s new releases that has garnered the praise of critics. Following his fortuitous release from prison thanks to the mercy of the rich Monsieur Jourdain, 17th century playwright Moliere comes to live in Jourdain’s house to teach him about the stage, so Jourdain can impress a lady while keeping it secret from his beautiful wife…whom Moliere begins to fall in love with.

The Hunting Party


Tomatometer: 52%

Hunting war criminals seems an arduous enough task for military types, but for fame-hungry reporters (and filmmakers like Morgan Spurlock, whose upcoming doc chronicles his search for Osama bin Laden) it’s a career-defining challenge. In writer-director Richard Shepard’s black comedy, Richard Gere, Terrence Howard, and Jesse Eisenberg head to Sarajevo to find a man called The Fox, based on the real-life story of a group of journalists who tried to find and apprehend Bosnian Serb war criminal Radovan Karadzic.

Blonde Ambition


Tomatometer: N/A

Audiences beware: Jessica Simpson is now a “movie star,” as evidenced by her first true starring vehicle. Produced by dad Joe Simpson, and featuring a slew of cameos and appearances by the likes of Rachael Leigh Cook, Luke Wilson, Penelope Ann Miller, Andy Dick, and (sigh) Penny Marshall, Blonde Ambition represents everything that is wrong with the movies — namely, that castmembers like the luminous, capable actress Rachael Leigh Cook are relegated to supporting roles while Simpson bounces her way around the screen as a small-town girl who falls in love with the mailroom boy (Wilson) while climbing unwittingly up the corporate ladder.

‘Til next week, happy renting!

Two new films were met with enthusiasm from North American moviegoers who
powered each film past the openings of their respective predecessors. Fans of
action and horror lined up for the threequel
Resident
Evil: Extinction
which bowed at number one while those in search of a
laugh spent their dollars on the romantic comedy
Good Luck Chuck
.
Both opened with averages of more than $5,000 each and helped to fill the entire
Top Five with R-rated fare as the overall marketplace bounced back after recent
sluggish weeks.

Gamers still love to go to the movies. That’s what Sony learned with its
estimated $24M opening weekend for
Resident
Evil: Extinction
, the third and supposedly final chapter of the popular
movie franchise starring
Milla Jovovich.
If the estimate holds, it will give the latest chapter the best debut of the
series. 2002’s original premiered with $17.7M while its 2004 sequel
Resident
Evil: Apocalypse
bowed to $23M. Final grosses reached $39.5M and $50.7M,
respectively. In a world where third parts rarely enjoy the biggest opening in a
series (The Bourne Ultimatum is the only other of this year’s seven threequels
to do so), Extinction‘s performance is noteworthy in that it generated
its strong gross from 456 fewer theaters than Apocalyspe had three years
ago.





Dane Cook and
Jessica Alba
made a popular couple as their new romantic comedy
Good Luck Chuck

opened in second place with a solid $14M, according to estimates. Lionsgate
released the R-rated pic in 2,612 locations and averaged a commendable $5,360
per site. Critics trashed the film but moviegoers paid no attention. The debut
was 23% better than the $11.4M opening of Cook’s last comedy,
Employee of the
Month
, which the distributor bowed last October. In Chuck, the actor
plays a man who women find lucky since all his ex-girlfriends go on to get
engaged after dating him.
 




Jodie Foster
dropped two spots with her vigilante thriller
The Brave One
which
fell 45% to an estimated $7.4M in its second weekend. The Warner Bros. release
has grossed $25.1M in ten days and should reach the vicinity of $44M, or a
little less than half of the grosses of the last starring roles for the actress
– $89.7M for Flightplan
and $95.3M for Panic
Room
. The Lionsgate Western
3:10 to Yuma

continued to have good legs easing only 29% to an estimated $6.4M for a 17-day
cume of $37.9M.
 



The mob thriller
Eastern Promises
starring Viggo Mortensen expanded into nationwide
release and jumped into fifth place with an estimated $5.7M. Widening from 15 to
1,404 venues, the Focus title averaged a respectable $4,093 per site. Eastern
did not show the same strength as director
David
Cronenberg’
s last film
A History of
Violence
(another Viggo pic that opened limited in September) which
grossed $8.1M and averaged $6,047 when it expanded nationally in its sophomore
frame two years ago. Cume for Eastern stands at $6.5M.
 





Stumbling into sixth place was the new
Amanda Bynes
teen comedy Sydney
White
which bowed to an estimated $5.3M from 2,104 locations for a weak
$2,530 average. The Universal release sets the classic Snow White story on a
modern-day college campus and attracted half the business of Bynes’ last comedy
She’s the
Man
(an adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Twelfth Night) which opened to
$10.7M in March 2006. Sydney skewed to a young female audience, as expected.
 


New Line’s
Billy Bob Thornton
comedy
Mr. Woodcock

dropped 43% in its second weekend to an estimated $5M putting the ten-day total
at $15.7M. A $25-28M final seems likely. Fellow comedy
Superbad
grossed an
estimated $3.1M, off 39%, giving Sony $116.2M to date. The studio also crossed
the $1 billion mark in domestic tickets sales for the sixth year in a row.
 



Universal’s assassin smash
The Bourne Ultimatum

dipped only 32% to an estimated $2.8M pushing the domestic haul to $220.2M.
Universal can now claim the only two summer films to spend eight weeks in the
top ten as the Matt Damon smash joined studio stablemate
Knocked Up
.
Rounding out the top ten was the fantasy adventure
Dragon Wars
with an
estimated $2.5M, down 50%, for a ten-day cume of only $8.6M.
 





Debuting to scorching results in limited release was
Sean Penn‘s
latest directorial effort
Into the Wild

which banked an estimated $207,000 from only four theaters for a potent $51,649
per site. The Paramount Vantage release stars
Emile Hirsch,
earned strong reviews, and helped critics get the bad taste of Penn’s
All the King’s Men

out of their mouths. Wild expands to the top dozen markets next weekend.
 



Warner Bros. got off to a solid start with its Old West tale

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
which made
off with an estimated $144,000 from 15 theaters for a $9,600 average. Ten of the
locations were in Austin with most double-screening the nearly-three-hour outlaw
tale. The Brad PittCasey
Affleck
starrer earned generally good notices from reviewers and will widen
on Friday.
 





With all the new films in wide release, four pictures dropped out of the top ten
over the weekend. New Line’s
Rush Hour 3
took
in an estimated $2.2M, off 33%, giving the
Jackie ChanChris
Tucker
vehicle $136.1M to date. Look for a final domestic gross of about
$142M. Fellow franchise flick
Halloween
tumbled
56% to an estimated $2.2M as well giving MGM $54.6M to date. A finish of $58M
seems likely.
 



A weekend estimate of $1.7M greeted the comedies
Balls of Fury

from Focus and
Mr. Bean’s Holiday
from Universal. The ping pong pic fell 47% for a cume
of $31.3M while the
Rowan Atkinson
Eurotrip eased 36% and has gathered $30.8M to date. A final domestic tally of
$35M should result for each.
 





Expanding successfully was the Sony musical saga
Across the
Universe
with an estimated $2.1M from only 276 theaters for an
impressive $7,428 average. The
Julie Taymor-directed
pic expanded from its platform debut in 23 venues last weekend and has raised
its total to $3M.
 





Paramount launched the summer megahit
Transformers

in Imax theaters over the weekend and saw its weekend take jump 196% to an
estimated $1.4M (including sales from standard-format screens). That pushed the
cume to $313.6M putting the robots in disguise at number 21 on the list of
all-time domestic blockbusters and less than $1 million away from tossing

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
($314.2M) out of the
Top 20.
 





The top ten films grossed an estimated $76.2M which was off 1% from last year
when Jackass:
Number Two
debuted in first place with $29M; and down 10% from 2005 when
Flightplan opened in the top spot with $24.6M.

Author: Gitesh Pandya,
www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

Jodie Foster will find herself in the middle of a catfight over the number one spot this weekend. The star of current chart-topper The Brave One will face challenges from Milla Jovovich‘s new action sequel Resident Evil: Extinction, Jessica Alba‘s romantic comedy Good Luck Chuck, and the Amanda Bynes college laugher Sydney White. With adult-skewing dramas ruling the box office over the past couple of weeks, teens and young adults should be out in full force this weekend thanks to the selection of new options.

Deadly viruses and killer zombies are back in Sony’s Extinction, the latest and final chapter in its video game-inspired action-horror franchise. The series has been a popular one with the first Resident Evil opening to $17.7M in March 2002 and its sequel Resident Evil: Apocalypse debuting to a stronger $23M in September 2004. Each averaged about $7,000 over the debut frame. The R-rated Extinction will play to the converted and is not likely to generate any new fans. In fact, some will drop out thinking a third helping is a bit too much. Still the built-in audience of young adults and gamers plus a solid marketing push guarantee a top spot launch. Attacking over 2,700 locations, Resident Evil: Extinction could capture roughly $20M over the three-day debut period.


Milla Jovovich fights a zombie in Resident Evil: Extinction

Dane Cook plays a dude whose every ex-girlfriend ends up engaged to the next guy she dates in the romantic comedy Good Luck Chuck. Jessica Alba co-stars in the R-rated release from Lionsgate which will use starpower to attract an audience of older teens and young adults. Last October Cook teamed up with another Jessica, Simpson that time, in the PG-13 comedy Employee of the Month which bowed to $11.4M. The marketing on Chuck has been good and cross-gender appeal seems solid too, although the rating could cut into business from younger teens who will certainly want to see this picture. Falling into 2,612 theaters, Good Luck Chuck may gross about $12M this weekend.


Jessica Alba and Dane Cook in Good Luck Chuck

Amanda Bynes headlines the college comedy Sydney White playing a freshman caught between the popular sorority sisters and her nerdy pals. The PG-13 film will aim itself squarely at teens and college students and should skew a bit more female. Hollywood has had a tough time reaching young females recently with flops like Nancy Drew ($6.8M opening), Bratz ($4.2M), and Gracie ($1.4M) all stalling. Sydney will try to appeal to the same crowd that powered Bynes’ comedy She’s the Man to $10.7M in March 2006. However the marketing push is not as strong and the release will not be as wide so the three-day take will be softer. The marketplace’s current lack of offerings for this audience creates a great opportunity for a good marketable film to come in a loot some cash. But Sydney just doesn’t seem to have what it takes to score a big opening. Pledging in over 1,900 theaters, Sydney White could debut with around $6M.


Amanda Bynes in Sydney White

Last weekend, David Cronenberg‘s latest crime thriller Eastern Promises enjoyed a limited release bow that was basically a carbon copy of his last film A History of Violence which opened to $515,992 from 14 theaters in September 2005 for a potent $36,857 average. Focus is now matching History‘s sophomore weekend expansion pattern by widening Promises to 1,404 locations nationwide. History in its second session expanded to 1,340 sites and grossed $8.1M for a solid $6,047 average. Reviews and buzz for Promises is just as good so a similar performance could be in the works. Ticket prices are slightly higher, but so are the number of films also targeting an adult audience. In fact, the top five this weekend should boast mostly R-rated fare. For this weekend, look for Eastern Promises to take in about $8M.


Eastern Promises

In the arthouse scene, which is quickly getting more crowded with each passing week, Brad Pitt rolls in as both actor and producer in the Old West drama The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. Warner Bros. is unleashing the R-rated pic in only 15 theaters in New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, and Austin hoping to generate a strong average and positive word of mouth. Pitt already scored the Best Actor trophy for his portrayal of the famous outlaw at the Venice International Film Festival and is making a bid for kudos attention over the months ahead. Reviews have been mostly positive and an expansion is planned for the coming weeks.


The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford

After a less-than-spectacular number one opening, Jodie Foster‘s revenge thriller The Brave One will try to fend off competition for its mature adult audience from the expansion of Eastern Promises. The frame’s three newbies should play to other audience segments. A 45% drop would give Warner Bros. about $7.5M for the weekend and a ten-day cume of $25M which would be about how much Foster’s last starring vehicle Flightplan grossed in only its first three days.

3:10 to Yuma posted a solid hold last weekend and this time a similar drop could result. The Lionsgate release might dip by 35% to around $6M raising the total to $37M after 17 days.

LAST YEAR: Johnny Knoxville and his partners in crime landed a big number one opening for Jackass: Number Two which bowed to $29M. The Paramount sequel went on to collect $72.8M. Focus debuted in second with another R-rated film aimed at young men, the Jet Li actioner Fearless, which grossed $10.6M. The historical pic reached $24.6M. Sony’s football drama Gridiron Gang dropped two spots to third with $9.5M in its sophomore frame. Opening poorly in fourth was the action flick Flyboys with only $6M for MGM on its way to $13.1M. The animated film Everyone’s Hero rounded out the top five with $4.7M. Premiering to dismal results was the Sean Penn vehicle All the King’s Men (the third new release to take place in the past) with $3.7M for Sony. It quickly ended its run with a poor $7.2M.

Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

This week at the movies, we’ve got cursed couples (Good Luck Chuck,
starring Dane Cook and
Jessica Alba), a collegiate Snow White (Sydney White,
starring Amanda Bynes), the London underworld (Eastern Promises, starring
Viggo Mortensen and
Naomi Watts), and post-apocalyptic zombie killing (Resident
Evil: Apocalypse
, starring
Milla Jovovich). What do the critics have to say?

Romantic comedies are often the most difficult films to pull off; you need
palpable chemistry between the leads, inspired jokes, and a delicate sense of
comic timing. Good luck finding those attributes in
Good Luck Chuck
,
critics say. Dane Cook stars as a guy who’s the victim of a curse, one in which
any woman who dates him finds true love — with someone else. Enter Jessica Alba
as a penguin-lover who really digs him. Can she break the curse? Critics say the
movie seems to be under a spell of its own, one in which potential laughs are
squandered by means of rude humor, shopworn slapstick, and an ultimately cheesy
resolution. At seven percent on the Tomatometer, Chuck this one to the
curb.




"Why yes, I am interested in renewing my subscription to
The Atlantic Monthly."

Sydney White, the titular heroine of this Snow White update, might find herself
singing, "Someday, my prince will come." Or perhaps, "Someday, a bunch of
princely movie critics may give my movie a good review."
Sydney White
stars
Amanda Bynes as a college freshman who has to contend with a malicious sorority
queen while whipping a frat of geeks into social shape. While critics agree
Bynes is a talented actress who’s rescued movies in the past, her comic skills
go largely to waste here on a script that functions completely on stereotypes
and does little to plant new twists on the classic
fairy tale. In fact, the scribes say the unsubtle references to Snow White lore
in the movie are jarring and distracting. At 46 percent Tomatometer, Sydney
White
is one poisoned apple.



"Tomatometers that big gotta be fake."

With Eastern Promises,
David Cronenberg continues to utilize genre
trappings for his singular dark, bold vision. Promises stars Viggo
Mortensen as a mysterious yet charismatic Russian hitman whose loyalties are put
into question when he encounters Naomi Watts’s character. Critics praise
Eastern
‘s tight pacing, grisly images that are shocking but short of
exploitation, and Mortensen’s daring performance.  And a fight scene in a
bathhouse between Mortensen and a group of thugs is being touted as one of the most impressive action set piecess in recent memory.  At a
Certified Fresh 86 percent, Cronenberg Promises a good time. (Check out our interview with Cronenberg and Mortensen
here).



"So what makes you qualified to be an American Apparel model?"

Are video game adaptations headed the way of the eggplant wizard? That’s up for debate, but
it appears that the people behind
Resident Evil: Extinction
were
prepared for a critical ice age; what other reason for not screening the movie
before its release? As with the first two Evil flicks, Extinction
stars Milla Jovovich as a zombie killer roaming a post-apocalyptic landscape.
Kids, put down your biology textbooks and Guess that Tomatometer. (Oh, and be
sure to check out our report from the Resident Evil: Extinction set
here).




"Just give me some green herb and no one gets hurt."

Also opening this week in limited release: The Brazilian import
Antonia
,
the gritty story of a group of female rappers overcoming poverty, is at 88
percent; Sean Penn‘s
Into the Wild, starring Emile Hirsch as a young man
who ditches civilization for the wilderness, is at 85 percent;
The
Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
, a revisionist look
at the famed outlaw starring
Brad Pitt and
Casey Affleck, is at 84 percent;
The
Last Winter
, a supernatural/philosophical horror film set in Alaska, is at
80 percent;
Beauty Remains
, a story of
two sisters in love with the same man on the cusp of the Chinese Revolution, is
at 67 percent;
Adrift in Manhattan
, about profound encounters between
strangers in the Big Apple, is at 60 percent;
The Jane Austen Book Club
, a tale of book club members who
find their lives paralleling the text of the great author, is at 58 percent; and

Trade
, a drama about young women sold into sexual slavery, is at 33
percent.




"Now give me some sensibility, with a little pride and/or
prejudice thrown in."


Finally, props to our old buddy
Mizzoucritic, who came the closest to guessing
Dragon
Wars
‘ 25 percent Tomatometer. If you see MC, be sure to spot him for
breakfast at Ron’s Country Boy, the ideal eatery for celebrating a hard-fought
victory.

Recent Viggo Mortensen Movies:
——————————————
87% — A History of Violence (2005)
46% — Hidalgo (2004)
94% —
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
(2003)
97% —
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
(2002)
94% —
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
(2001)

Recent Jessica Alba Movies:
———————————–
40% — The Ten (2007)
36% —
The Fantastic Four: The Rise of the Silver Surfer
(2007)
21% — Into the Blue (2005)
26% — Fantastic Four (2005)
77% — Sin City (2005)

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