Box Office Battlefield: The Equalizer vs. The Boxtrolls

Box Office Battlefield The Equalizer vs. The Boxtrolls

The weekend warriors of September 26, 2014 includes The Equalizer and The Boxtrolls as well as with two limited releases. 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 and determine who will be victorious.

Last weekend, The Maze Runner took off one foot in front of the other, proving that there is something left in the tank in the genre of young adult adaptation. This weekend King Kong has got nothing on at least one contender while the other is a family-friendly, stop-motion picture. Who will win? Will we the trolls tell riddles under a bridge? This is the Box Office Battlefield:

The Equalizer 2014 Movie Title Logo

The Equalizer (Antoine Fuqua) Rated R [131 min] A former black ops commando who faked his death for a quiet life in Boston comes out of his retirement to rescue a young girl and finds himself face to face with Russian gangsters. Starring Denzel Washington, Marton Csokas, Chloë Grace Moretz, and David Harbour

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 59% • Audience – 77%

What They’re Saying:

“This one’s strictly for those who enjoyed “Man on Fire,” the other prominent kid-protection fable, slick and bloodthirsty, in the Washington oeuvre.” – Michael Phillips (Chicago Tribune)

“As entertainment, The Equalizer rarely delivers: It’s like a superhero origin story invested with half-assed gravitas.” – A.A. Dowd (AV Club)

What I’m Saying:

As I figured before, this is just your typical anti-hero, vigilante played by Denzel Washington. I’m sure it has some dark, edgy parts to it, but nothing out of the ordinary that you must see this instance. And that run time just seems excessive. RENT IT!

The Boxtrolls Movie Title Movie Logo

The Boxtrolls (Graham Annable  and Anthony Stacchi) Rated PG [97 min]A young orphaned boy raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors tries to save his friends from an evil exterminator. Based on the children’s novel ‘Here Be Monsters’ by Alan Snow. Starring Ben Kingsley, Jared Harris, Nick Frost, and Richard Ayoade

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 70% • Audience – 77%

What They’re Saying:

“Boxtrolls’ world is fantastically detailed and physical, with every frame crammed with complicated machinery, hand-painted textures and handcrafted props, and a sense of vast and focused attention.” – Tasha Robinson (The Dissolve)

“A delectable treat that balances themes of identity and class warfare with Monty Python-style political skewering, quirky humor and dairy jokes.” – Brian Truitt (USA Today)

What I’m Saying:

Laika has some pretty dark stories. From Coraline to ParaNorman, this isn’t your ordinary Pixar fare. However, the studio does some fantastic work and I’m looking to see how they progress on their storytelling and whether they can continue to excel stop-motion animation. MATINEE IT!

Pride 2014 Movie Title Logo

Pride (Matthew Warchus) Rated R [120 min]UK gay and lesbian activists work to help miners during their lengthy strike of the National Union of Mineworkers in the summer of 1984. Starring Bill Nighy, Andrew Scott, Dominic West, and Imelda Staunton

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 92% • Audience – 93%

What They’re Saying:

” Pride hits some bumpy patches when it switches gears between comedy and gentle pathos, which it does often. But its spirit is bold enough to power through the rough spots. ” – Stephanei Zacharek (Village Voice)

“The kind of hearty, blunt-force drama with softened edges that leaves audiences applauding and teary-eyed.” – Stephen Holden (New York Times)

What I’m Saying:

From my original judgement, I felt as though this would be your standard, feel-good movie where two polarizing sides come together to face certain odds and learn from each other ala Remember the Titans. I still don’t believe I’m too far off, but apparently Pride is able to present this narrative very well. MATINEE IT!

The Two Faces of January Movie Title Logo

The Two Faces of January (Hossein Amini) Rated PG-13 [96 min] A thriller centered on a con artist, his wife, and a stranger who flee Athens after one of them is caught up in the death of a private detective. Starring Kirsten Dunst, Viggo Mortensen, Oscar Isaac, and Daisy Bevan

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 82% • Audience – 55%

 What They’re Saying:

” All the pieces would seem to be in place for an effective film, but the direction is zestless, the pace is more often laggardly than leisurely, and the lead performances are surprisingly lifeless…” – Joe Morgenstern (Wall Street Journal)

” Is the film too old-school for short attention spans? Maybe. Rest assured that Amini’s shuddery endgame is well worth the wait.” – Peter Travers (Rolling Stone)

What I’m Saying:

I’m still putting my foot down in thinking this movie looks like a complete bore. I’m a patient film goer, but The Two Faces of January doesn’t have any kind of appeal to be worth anyone’s time. The only positive side to this film, I see, is that it has a short running time. WAIT FOR IT ON NETFLIX!

As much as I would like to see The Boxtrolls succeed over The Equalizer, as I said, Laika dishes out some pretty adult themes that parents may be weary of. And the subject matter will most likely appeal to all quadrants. Denzel is a household name, and Chloë Grace Moretz has a strong following by younger audiences. Despite it’s R rating, the action and dark brooding anti-hero will have more out in droves than a fantastical animated feature about weird looking tolls. So as it stands, I believe the victor for this weekend shall be:

Winner: The Equalizer


Movie synopses courtesy of IMDb.com and Tomatometer Scores from Rotten Tomatoes

Find me on the Twitter @TyRawrrnosaurus

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