Weekend Preview (10.29.10)

Halloween weekend. That must mean it’s “Saw” time. The horror mega-franchise has dominated the last six years with exception of the last couple (losing out to “High School Musical 3” and “Paranormal Activity.”) Certainly the achievement deserves some respect, but if you haven’t been keeping up with the franchise, this is a pretty wasted weekend at the movies for you and a solid excuse to dig up some old favorite Halloween films. Considering reviews so far, this is recommended even more so.

I suppose there’s also the Hillary Swank/Sam Rockwell criminal justice drama “Conviction” coming out in 565 theaters, but I don’t think it warrants being written about at this juncture.

Now Playing

Saw 3D

Directed by Kevin Greutert
Written by Patrick Melton, Marcus Dunstan
Starring: Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Betsy Russell

The Word: The most successful horror series of all time has finally decided to end … for now. The last chapter of the “immortal” Jigsaw and his traps to teach people the “value” of life finally graces theaters in 3D. This seventh edition features a battle over the master’s legacy.

Rotten Tomatoes: 17% (awful)

My Thoughts: Well, I suppose this a chance for the fans to get some closure in this seventh edition of the torture horror franchise. After “Saw VI” managed just $67 million worldwide (barely over half the gross of “Saw V”), Lionsgate has decided to call it quits — for now. With “Paranormal Activity” taking a bite out of it last year and an opening weekend earning just $14.1 million, the hope is that the label of “final” chapter will pull in one last big gross. It probably deserves it.

Recommendation: If you’ve seen, let’s say, 4 out of the 6 previous films, you should go get your peace of mind. Otherwise, rent a classic horror film this weekend for Halloween.

Box Office Predictions

Last year, as mentioned, “Saw VI” made a putrid $14.1 million compared to $30 million for “Saw V.” Many will look to “Paranormal Activity” for stealing its thunder. So, how will the final installment do? I think in between V and VI is a safe bet. The draw is this is the final film and it will be in 3D. The problem is that “Paranormal Activity 2” is riding high on some great reviews and a $40-million opening. That’s direct competition, even if horror films are known to lose their audience after the first weekend.

It’s tough, but I think I’m going to go with Saw 3D. It’s a gutsy call, but last year was unique for “Paranormal Activity.” Paranormal Activity 2 should see the typical horror decrease and is at least tracking to do so this week. Halloween weekend is wildcard, but I see “Saw 3D” with $22-25 million and “Activity” with $18-20 million. I’ll put some faith in the “Saw” fans wanting a last hurrah.

The rest should be a slide-down as is usually the case when a weekend has minimal new competition. Jackass 3-D will take another big hit, but it should outlas RED no problem. $10-12 M for the daredevils and $10 M for the old folks. Hereafter will probably make $6-7 M after a solid outing last weekend.

  1. Saw 3D
  2. Paranormal Activity 2
  3. Jackass 3-D
  4. RED
  5. Hereafter


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