Every week, movie studios select candidates to enter the glorious battlefield for your hard-earned dollars. The weekend warriors of May 15, 2015 includes Mad Max: Fury Road vs. Pitch Perfect 2. Box Office Battlefield is here to help you decide which movie(s) will take priority over the others and determine who will be victorious. Should you see ’em, skip ’em, or rent ’em? Find out after the break.
Last weekend, Age of Ultron faltered with a 60% drop in audience retention. However the Avengers stood strong more than well enough to hold their own against Hot Pursuit. The competition stiffens up this week as two sequels make their big debut, both with fresh ratings from both fans and critics alike. Will Marvel Studios hold on to the top spot or will it be drown out with the songs of apocalyptic fantasy and a capella? This is the Box Office Battlefield:
Mad Max: Fury Road (George Miller) Rated R [120 min] – In a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, two rebels just might be able to restore order: Max, a man of action and of few words, and Furiosa, a woman of action who is looking to make it back to her childhood homeland. Starring Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Nicholas Hoult, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Abbey Lee, and Zoë Kravitz [Watch the trailer]
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 98% • Audience – 94%
This movie is everything. All that you’ve heard and seen about Mad Max: Fury Road is true. It’s the craziest, balls-to-the-wall action movie that has ever to come out in a very long time. There’s hardly any room for you to catch you breath. And surprisingly, it’s as much as a movie for the ladies as it is for the guys. Not saying that there’s a bunch of half-naked men running around, which there is, but there are some very strong, kick-ass women doing their thing. From the practical effects to the inventive story to the overall emotional thrill ride Fury Road presents, this is the text book definition as to why we go to the movies. SEE THIS MOVIE AS SOON AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE! [Read my full review]
Pitch Perfect 2 (Elizabeth Banks) Rated PG-13 [115 min] – After a humiliating command performance at Lincoln Center, the Barden Bellas enter an international competition that no American group has ever won in order to regain their status and right to perform. Starring Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany Snow, Anna Camp, Adam Devine, Hana Mae Lee, and Ester Dean [Watch the trailer]
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 68% • Audience – 81%
As much as I enjoyed the first Pitch Perfect, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect going into this sequel. Elizabeth Banks’ directorial debut is adequate, but could have used a little more fine tuning. She plays it too safe and recycles a lot of the humor. The jokes and the writing are still pretty sharp, but it all seems too familiar and doesn’t evolve the characters organically at all. The music and the performances are fairly impressive, the cast is still fun to hang out with, and the fresh faces fit in quite nicely. However, Pitch Perfect 2 is much more disjointed and less focused than its predecessor. MATINEE IT! [Read my full review]
The hype surrounding Avengers: Age of Ultron is waning and hasn’t lived up to expectations. It’s great, but Mad Max: Fury Road comes in shiny and new. It’s completely unexpected and is one of the wildest rides you could ever see. It’s sitting at a whopping 99% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes with only one rotten review – which is a terrible review by the way – and it has the potential to be an unforeseen blockbuster for Warner Bros. The film is rated R unfortunately, but earlier this year, American Sniper had the second largest opening weekend for a Rated R movie with $89 million domestic.
Pitch Perfect opened to a tune of $14 with a RT score of 81% fresh in 2012. It’s rated PG-13 and was an unexpected hit. There’s definitely a large following for the franchise now, but the story is so niche that it might not be able to attract boat loads of moviegoers. The reviews are also middling, mostly swinging positive, but that’s not the best indicator of theater traffic for these kinds of films. It has a female driven story, but so is Mad Max.
With two big summer releases this weekend, and the fact that Ultron only earned $77 million last weekend, there stands a chance for a new king to sit on the throne. So as it stands, I believe the victor for this weekend will be:
Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road
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Movie synopses courtesy of IMDb.com and Tomatometer Scores from Rotten Tomatoe