“Thor: Ragnarok” Delivers Hela Good Opening


November 3-5, 2017

(estimates from



Thor: Ragnarok  $121.0 million
A Bad Moms Christmas  $17.0 million
Jigsaw $6.7 million
Boo 2! A Madea Halloween  $4.6 million
Geostorm $3.0 million


It's been a guarantee for some time now: if Marvel's got a new movie, it's going to be No. 1. And aside from Avengers: Age of Ultron, it's also going to open bigger than the previous installment. Thor: Ragnarok opened in the top spot, with one of the biggest openings of the year (though still below It, interestingly enough). It also bested the debuts of 2011's Thor ($65 million) and The Dark World ($85 million). But it will be interesting to see how high its final tally is, since no Marvel movie has ever opened this close to another big comic book movie. (Justice League opens on November 17.)


A Bad Moms Christmas did OK for itself as counter-programming, though it maybe wasn't the best gamble since Thor: Ragnarok is practically a comedy itself. (I think if it had opened a month later, it would have done much better.) It debuted below what the original started with last summer, and it's probably going to get crushed in the coming weeks because of the similarly themed Daddy's Home 2.


Jigsaw took the standard 50-plus percent horror drop in its second weekend, as Boo 2! and Geostorm continued to plummet. Only the Madea movie has a shot at topping $50 million, which along with Happy Death Day, makes it one of the fall's only semi-successes.


Outside the top 5:

  • This Weekend's Indie Champ: Lady Bird, the heralded coming-of-age story from Greta Gerwig. The film got a rare 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and audiences in New York and L.A. turned out accordingly. It set a record for 2017, with an astonishing $93,903 average on four screens.
  • No one seemed to want a history lesson at the movies this weekend. Rob Reiner's LBJ biopic starring Woody Harrelson as our 36th president, completely bombed, debuting at No. 14 with around $1.1 million.
  • And once again, sometimes reviews, stars and talent aren't enough to beat what audiences are just more interested in. The acclaimed drama Last Flag Flying, starring Bryan Cranston, Steve Carell and Laurence Fishburne (and directed by Richard Linklater), made less money than the serial killer origin story My Friend Dahmer, which didn't have near the hype or critical attention.


Next week: Murder on the Orient Express tries to prove there are still movies for adults out there. But that won't mean anything, because it's going to get crushed by Daddy's Home 2. I think Thor: Ragnarok still reigns supreme with $60 million, while Daddy's Home 2 will probably do around what the original did with about $35 million. That leaves the star-studded Murder on the Orient Express to get the scraps, at around $20 million.


About Kip Mooney

Kip Mooney
Like many film critics born during and after the 1980s, my hero is Roger Ebert. The man was already the best critic in the nation when he won the Pulitzer in 1975, but his indomitable spirit during and after his recent battle with cancer keeps me coming back to read not only his reviews but his insightful commentary on the everyday. But enough about a guy you know a lot about. I knew I was going to be a film critic—some would say a snob—in middle school, when I had to voraciously defend my position that The Royal Tenenbaums was only a million times better than Adam Sandler’s remake of Mr. Deeds. From then on, I would seek out Wes Anderson’s films and avoid Sandler’s like the plague. Still, I like to think of myself as a populist, and I’ll be just as likely to see the next superhero movie as the next Sundance sensation. The thing I most deplore in a movie is laziness. I’d much rather see movies with big ambitions try and fail than movies with no ambitions succeed at simply existing. I’m also a big advocate of fun-bad movies like The Room and most of Nicolas Cage’s work. In the past, I’ve written for The Dallas Morning News and the North Texas Daily, which I edited for a semester. I also contributed to Dallas-based Pegasus News, which in the circle of life, is now part of The Dallas Morning News, where I got my big break in 2007. Eventually, I’d love to write and talk about film full-time, but until that’s a viable career option, I work as an auditor for Wells Fargo. I hope to one day meet my hero, go to the Toronto International Film Festival, and compete on Jeopardy. Until then, I’m excited to share my love of film with you.

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