Though Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle might still eek out a win by the end of Sunday, two new releases are currently fighting it out for the top spot in a neck-and-neck competition. 12 Strong and Den of Thieves currently are estimated to bring in the same figure from Friday sales – $5.6 million – which means we currently have an honest-to-goodness tie for the top spot right now. Figures will likely change in the next few hours to crown the true champion, but for right now, two very bad movies are dominating the American box office.
My money is on Den of Thieves, a R-grade knock-off of Heat with none of the style, confidence, or exquisite pacing that Michael Mann imbued that masterpiece with some two decades ago. It’s only highlight is Gerard Butler, who hasn’t had a truly compelling role since Ralph Fiennes‘ thrilling adaptation of William Shakespeare‘s Coriolanus. That might not sound like much to hang an entire movie on, but it still puts the movie head-and-shoulders above 12 Strong, another disastrous attempt to reckon with the endless Iraq/Afghanistan war and the soldiers who have been fighting it. Even something as grotesque as Peter Berg‘s Lone Survivor made more attempts to challenge the blatantly false concept that all American soldiers are good men fighting against absolute evil than this movie does. Of course, those are the only kinds of Iraq war movies that end up doing well at the box office, so this isn’t entirely a surprise.
There is genuinely more to be learned about human experience and life in Jumanji than there is to be gleaned in either of these movies. Jake Kasdan‘s adventure-comedy is currently in third with $4.8 million and it could very well still surge ahead over the next 48 hours to hold onto its crown. Less likely is The Post or The Greatest Showman making any major gains against the top three. Steven Spielberg‘s latest, which went wide last weekend, currently has $3.5 million in fourth against the Hugh Jackman-starring musical in fifth with $3 million. Expect the line-up to stay the same but the placements to swap around a bit over the next two days.
Here’s the top five for Friday:
|Title||Friday Domestic BO||Total Domestic BO|
|1. ‘Den of Thieves’||$5,660,000||$5,660,000|
|2. ’12 Strong’||$5,660,000||$5,660,000|
|3. ‘Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle’||$4,850,000||$301,541,148|
|4. ‘The Post’||$3,500,000||$36,541,402|
|5. ‘The Greatest Showman’||$3,000,000||$105,480,607|