The weekend warriors of February 21, 2014 includes Pompeii and 3 Days to Kill, as well as the limited release of The Wind Rises. Box Office Battlefield is a recurring rundown of all the movie releases for the weekend. Every week, movie studios select candidates to enter the glorious battlefield for your hard-earned dollars. Box Office Battlefield is here to help you decide which movie(s) will take priority over the others.
Last weekend, The LEGO Movie continued to crush the competition despite all of the romantic releases on Valentine’s Day. Two new contenders are looking to tear down the LEGOcy this weekend, but only one will win.
Will the thrill of a volcano burn a hole in moviegoers pockets or will Kevin Kostner kill the competition? This is
Sparta Pompeii! This is the Box Office Battlefield:
Pompeii (Rated PG-13) 98 min – (Directed by Paul W.S. Anderson) Starring Kit Harington, Emily Browning, Kiefer Sutherland, and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje
Synopsis: A slave-turned-gladiator finds himself in a race against time to save his true love, who has been betrothed to a corrupt Roman Senator. As Mount Vesuvius erupts, he must fight to save his beloved as Pompeii crumbles around him.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 29% • Audience – 58%
If director Paul W.S. Anderson (Resident Evil; Mortal Kombat; Death Race) didn’t already set off a red flag, than boy are you in for a treat. Pompeii comes off as someone’s desperate attempt to try and milk the 300 bandwagon again, and we already have a 300 film coming out later this year. An “epic” mashup of too many genres, Pompeii is swallowed up alive by its mixed messages and overly serious tone. Neither fun nor exciting, Pompeii presents nothing interesting or of value to take your time out of the day to consume. SKIP IT!
3 Days to Kill (Rated PG-13) 113 min – (Directed by McG) Starring Kevin Costner, Hailee Steinfeld, Connie Nielsen, and Amber Heard
Synopsis: A dying Secret Service Agent trying to reconnect with his estranged daughter is offered an experimental drug that could save his life in exchange for one last assignment.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 25% • Audience – 65%
It’s not the worst thing to happen to action cinema, but Kevin Kostner isn’t helping the genre either. I’m not exactly sure why Hollywood can’t find a young, leading star to take up the spy series, but that isn’t the biggest issue with 3 Days to Kill. The film really tries hard to be something more than what is written on the page. There is acceptable action sequences thanks to McG’s visual eye (Terminator: Salvation; Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle) but the script by Luc Besson (Taken; The Fifth Element; The Transporter) is less desirable and all over place with its messages. WAIT FOR NETFLIX!
The Wind Rises [Limited] (Rated PG-13) 126 min – (Directed Hayao Miyazaki) Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, John Krasinski, Emily Blunt, and Martin Short
Synopsis: A look at the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 87% • Audience – 81%
As Hayao Miyazaki’s supposedly last feature film, The Wind Rises should be celebrated as yet another brilliant accomplishment in storytelling and animation. Through rich history, beautiful visuals and colors, and incredibly written characters The Wind Rises is a spectacular piece of filmmaking. This film is not only crucial to our history, but also a sheer achievement in celebrating one’s passion. SEE IT!
Pompeii looks like a steaming pile of ash, and Kevin Kostner does not have the marketability to stand out as a big budget action star, regardless of how OK 3 Days to Kill looks. The LEGO Movie made $50 million last weekend and there’s no doubt it will make a truck load again this weekend. It’s just that awesome. So as it stands, I believe the victor for this weekend shall be:
Winner: The LEGO Movie
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