Box Office Battlefield: The Transporter Refueled vs. A Walk in the Woods

Every week, movie studios select candidates to enter the glorious battlefield for your hard-earned dollars. The weekend warriors of September 4, 2015 includes The Transporter Refueled, A Walk in the Woods, and Before We Go. 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 below!

Last weekend, Straight Outta Compton straight capitalized on yet another poor delivery of new wide releases. We Are Your Friends made box office history in its debut as the fourth worst opening weekend for a new wide release film in more than 2,000 theaters. The Zac Efron led moving picture grossed only $1.76 million. Does an action reboot or a small Robert Redford indie stand a chance to capitalize on the weak selection as of late? Or will movie goers keep their hard earned cash and enjoy their Labor Day weekend? Never change the deal. This is the Box Office Battlefield:

The Transporter Refueled Movie Title Logo

The Transporter Refueled (Camille Delamarre) Rated PG-13 [96 min] – In the south of France, former special-ops mercenary Frank Martin enters into a game of chess with a femme-fatale and her three sidekicks who are looking for revenge against a sinister Russian kingpin. Starring Ed Skrein, Loan Chabanol, Ray Stevenson, and Lenn Kudrjawizki

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 18% • Audience – 35%

Their reviews:

“So many amazingly absurd things occur during the course of “The Transporter: Refueled” that it’s almost easy to forget that the basic idea driving this fourth installment is itself nonsensical.” – Nick Schager (The Playlist)

“Despite a lot of shortcomings and undercooked elements, The Transporter Refueled is a mildly entertaining action film.” – Ben Kendrick (ScreenRant)

My take:

With so many terrible movies in theaters lately, and my lack of exposure to The Transporter franchise, I decided to take a pass on The Transporter Refueled as my one skip weekend of the year. The action looks OK, but the story looks mediocre at best. And I don’t think this reboot looks as fun sans Jason Statham’s charisma. I liked Ed Skrein as Daario in HBO’s Game of Thrones, and he should have stayed there for a better opportunity to shine rather than get caught up in this waste of an effort film. I’m surprised The Transporter Refueled didn’t go straight to home video. WATCH IT ON NETFLIX OR SKIP IT!

A Walk in the Woods Movie Title Logo

A Walk in the Woods (Ken Kwapis) Rated R [104 min] – After spending two decades in England, Bill Bryson returns to the U.S., where he decides the best way to connect with his homeland is to hike the Appalachian Trail with one of his oldest friends. Starring Robert Redford, Nick Nolte, Emma Thompson, and Mary Steenburgen

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 47% • Audience – 59%

Their reviews:

“If I hadn’t known it was Bryson, A Walk In The Woods would just feel like some half-assed oldsploitation version of Wild starring a poor man’s odd couple with the comedic timing of a Google Translated Mexican sitcom from the eighties.” – Vince Mancini (FilmDrunk)

“It’s not a difficult picture to watch. All you want from A Walk in the Woods, honestly, is a chance to enjoy a couple of veteran actors. But the book’s comic tone hasn’t found a comfortable equivalent for the screen.” – Michael Phillips (Chicago Tribune)

My take:

I’m not a hiker nor am I an elderly man going through a third/end-life crisis seeking to enjoy what time I have left on this planet – although I always try to keep a positive and optimistic mindset so I can carpe that diem. After watching the trailer for A Walk in the Woods I found similarities to Grumpy Old Men and The Bucket List. They’re movies that I can understand, but not necessarily would seek or find too resonating. I’m sure this film has its quirky “old people” jokes that can create a smirk, however I don’t think anyone is going to get anything new out of their viewing experience. WATCH IT ON NETFLIX!

Before We Go Movie Title Logo

Before We Go (Chris Evans) [Limited] Rated PG-13 [89 min] – Two strangers stuck in Manhattan for the night grow into each other’s most trusted confidants when an evening of unexpected adventure forces them to confront their fears and take control of their lives. Starring Chris Evans, Alice Eve, Emma Fitzpatrick, and Scott Evans

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 24% • Audience – 65%

Their reviews:

“The whole effort seems to run solely on the smiles of its photogenic leads. And, frankly, the smiles routinely dissipate any perceived tension.” – Robert Abele (Los Angeles Times)

“A missed train sets the stage for Chris Evans’ directorial debut, Before We Go, but dramatically speaking, this talky, contrived and ultimately tedious actors’ exercise never leaves the station.” – Scott Foundas (Variety)

My take:

As Chris Evans’ directorial debut, Before We Go looks like a good attempt at recreating the magic of Before Sunrise. However, in this instance, it feels as if it’s more about the shenanigans of the evening rather than an intimate night with two strangers getting to know each other on a personal level we can relate to. I think Before We Go has potential, but doesn’t have strong enough characters to make it a memorable experience. WATCH IT ON NETFLIX!

Who honestly wants to see a reboot of The Transporter without Jason Statham? A Walk in the Woods is playing in less than 2,000 theaters and is too narrowly focused with its target audience. And all other competitors over the past few weeks have flopped hard. But hey, at least Inside Out and Jurassic World are rereleasing this Labor Day weekend to give you a few, better options if you want to get out of the heat. So as it stands, I believe the victor for this weekend will be:

Winner: Straight Outta Compton

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

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