‘American Sniper’ Tags Another Win

26 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘American Sniper’ holds top spot at weekend box office.

MANILA, Philippines–How many people do you have to kill before it starts to take a toll on you? Filmmaker Michael Moore caused a firestorm this week when he tweeted, in response to the film American Sniper, “My uncle [was] killed by sniper in WW2.This photo released by Universal Pictures shows Jennifer Lopez as Claire Peterson in a scene from the film, “The Boy Next Door.” (AP Photo/Universal Pictures, Suzanne Hanover)The Associated PressIn this image released by Lionsgate, Johnny Depp appears in a scene from “Mortdecai.” (AP Photo/Lionsgate, David Appleby)The Associated PressIn this photo provided by Lucasfilm Ltd., Marianne (voice of Evan Rachel Wood) is serenaded by Roland (voice of Sam Palladio) in “Strange Magic” a madcap fairy tale from Lucasfilm, Ltd.

Clint Eastwood’s mega-hit “American Sniper” was the top film at North American movie houses for a second week, despite controversy over what some feel is a jingoistic message and graphic violence.The war drama starring Bradley Cooper continued to surpass expectations and break records at the box office in its second weekend of wide release, grossing an estimated $64.4 million in first place and crossing the $200 million mark. United States Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle racked up an official body count of 160 confirmed kills during his four tours in Iraq, establishing him as the single most lethal US sniper ever.

The war drama, based on the true story of Iraq War Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, earned $64.4 million this weekend, industry estimates showed, after last weekend’s massive haul of nearly $90 million — a record January opening. That is a drop of 28% from its debut, a remarkable hold for the film and one that all but assures it will handily gross more than $300 million. “Sniper,” the story of U.S. Nearly half of all movie tickets sold over the weekend were for “American Sniper” and all told, the film has so far earned more than $200 million since its release, giving it bona fide blockbuster status. ‘American Sniper’ is announced as one of the Oscar nominees for Best Picture during the Academy Awards Nominations Announcement at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills, California on January 15, 2015 ©Mark Ralston (AFP/File) The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee said Muslims are facing increased threats in the United States after the release of the movie “American Sniper,” because of the way it portrays Arabs and Muslims. Sniper got tons of coverage in the press this past week thanks to its astounding opening weekend, something that surely drove viewers to theaters to see what the fuss is all about.

Originally given as a joke, Kyle (Bradley Cooper) is dubbed “Legend” because of his precision, making the troops under his protection feel safer even as it made him the most wanted man in Iraq. It is already director Clint Eastwood ’s highest-grossing film. “This weekend was extraordinary,” said Dan Fellman, president of domestic distribution at the movie’s distributor, Time Warner Inc. ’s Warner Bros. “We continue to write the records with ‘Sniper.’” The movie continued to overperform in southern cities like Jacksonville, Fla., and Atlanta, said Mr. Kyle is driven almost maniacally to do his job, but discovers it is much more difficult to switch that instinct off whenever he goes home to his wife Taya (Sienna Miller) and his family. “American Sniper” caught some unaware when what they thought was just another American-centric war movie was nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture. And invaders are worse.” Even Kid Rock criticized the Fahrenheit 9/11 director, writing “Fuck you Michael Moore, you’re a piece of shit and your uncle would be ashamed of you.” After a week of being attacked by the right wing and Fox News for allegedly “hating the troops,” Moore penned a lengthy Facebook response that details his frequent support for our armed forces. “Here’s the truth they can’t or won’t report: I’m the one who has supported these troops – much more than the bloviators on Fox News,” Moore writes before listing the many ways they’re misinformed in their opinion of him. The eccentric heist comedy, which also stars Gwyneth Paltrow, marks another box-office bomb for Depp, following the leading man’s disappointing Transcendence, The Lone Ranger, Dark Shadows and The Rum Diary. “I think he chooses projects that appeal to him,” Dergarabedian said. “I’ve always appreciated Johnny Depp for marching to the beat of his own drum, but he still needs to get audiences in the door.

The thriller about World War II code-cracking mathematician Alan Turing was near the top of the Oscars nomination list, with eight nods including in several of the top categories. Sometimes, if you go too far afield, that’s reflected in the numbers.” Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theatres, according to Rentrak. Musical fairly tale “Strange Magic” — the first animated movie release by Lucasfilm since its 2012 purchase by Disney — debuted in the seventh spot, grossing $5.53 million.

Historical drama “Selma,” depicting the epic 1965 Alabama march led by Martin Luther King in his battle for equal voting rights, was eighth, earning $5.5 million. It has grossed $40 million so far. “Strange Magic,” an animated fantasy from Walt Disney Co. inspired by “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” made its debut in seventh place with only $5.5 million. “Mortdecai,” a Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. film starring Johnny Depp as a roguish art dealer, fared even worse. While Moore’s remarks on director Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper, a film that Matt Taibbi called “almost too dumb to criticize,” is what started this whole ordeal, Moore is still showing the film at the movie theatre he programs in Manistee, MI. “Not because I like it, but because, unlike the other side, I’m not a censor,” Moore wrote. “I trust smart people and people of good heart will know what to do.

Cooper’s hot-cold, dispassionate-passionate swings give life to the character of the sniper, showing the seesaw between a killing machine and an ordinary man, between the soldier and the husband. “American Sniper” easily evokes other war films, with its sniper-versus-sniper subplot recalling “Enemy at the Gates” and the burden of being in battle echoing “The Hurt Locker.” Both observations are accurate, because in many ways, “American Sniper” follows the line of well-made modern war movies such as “Black Hawk Down” and, more recently, “Lone Survivor.” “American Sniper” will be accused of everything from being jingoistic propaganda to glorifying gun violence, but it also tries to present on film the devastating personal effects of waging war on the individual, as Kyle begins to experience what is apparently Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. You can’t have a conversation about what Clint Eastwood is up to if you haven’t seen what it is he’s up to.” Also of note: A vet serves as that theater’s projectionist. “In the end, the thing I’m most proud of for what I’ve done for the troops was sticking my neck out 12 years ago to become a leading opponent to Bush and the war.

In ninth place was another newcomer, star-vehicle “Mortdecai,” whose cast includes Hollywood heavy-hitter Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor. Opening-weekend audiences gave “The Boy Next Door” and “Strange Magic” both a B- grade, according to the CinemaScore market research firm. “Mortdecai” got a C+. In that sense, Eastwood allows “American Sniper” to follow the unusual rhythms of Kyle’s own conflicted life with a human existence squarely in the film’s crosshairs.

I tried to save more lives than a sniper ever could hope to – by preventing us from going to war in the first place,” Moore wrote. “So, Fox News and the other lazy media — quit making shit up about me! Rounding out the top 10 was “Into the Woods,” the star-studded big-screen adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim musical, with a hair under $3.9 million in tickets sold. Eastwood’s direction and Cooper’s wounded, powerful portrayal turn “American Sniper’s” titular character a moving target made from the warrior at war with himself. The critically liked film (it currently has a 98 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) ended up in the number three spot with $12.4 million, beating out fellow family-friendly film Strange Magic, which opened wide this weekend with a comparatively weak $5.5 million.

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here. The new thriller Black Sea, starring Jude Law made $35,000 in five theaters while Song One, a drama starring Anne Hathaway, opened in 27 locations with $23,800.

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