James Bond intrigues the North American box office with Skyfall

The monster that is Skyfall finally hit North American cinemas this week after an astounding run in Europe, Asia, and the UK.  The latest Bond film raked in $87 million in its opening weekend.  Reviews have been glowing and audiences have been singing the praises of Daniel Craig in the most personal and emotionally complex Bond film to date.  Skyfall is on its way to becoming the most successful film in the fifty year history of the series.

The Bond revival that started with Casino Royale had been qualified as a success before, but Skyfall is propelling the franchise into previously uncharted territory, putting James Bond in the earning categories of populated by superheroes, Transformers, and Jedi.

Wreck-It Ralph
held strong in its second weekend with an impressive week-over-week hold, bringing in $33 million.  Give Disney credit for continuing to develop their in-house animation projects which had always been viewed as the bastard red-headed stepchild to the critically and commercially beloved Pixar.  The internal division has slowly upped their game and put out films capable of going toe-to-toe with Pixar’s annual output.

Flight continues to soar.  The Denzel Washington drama sold $15 million worth of tickets.   Thanks to a modest budget and superb accolades from critics and audiences, this one will be a win for everybody involved.  Perhaps we will be spared from any more dead-eyed CG animated movies from Zemeckis.

Argo has been on the same trajectory as Flight, winning over audiences with great performances and quality storytelling continuing to hang out in the top five with another $6.5 million in tickets.  Meanwhile Taken 2 has become the little action thriller that won’t die.  What was written off as a throwaway sequel has nearly matched the take of the original.

In limited release, Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln had a strong debut.  The Oscar-winning orgy cleared almost $1 million at 11 theaters.  Even without vampires, this particular take on Abraham Lincoln should do very well when it goes wide next week.

Speaking of vampires (and going wide) Kristen Stewart leads the sexy supernatural cast of Twilight into their final installment, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2.  I don’t think I’ve been this happy to see a series end since watching the seventh Police Academy movie.  See you next week.

Here’s your top films for North America…

1. Skyfall
Weekend Estimate: $87 million

2. Wreck-It Ralph
Weekend Estimate: $33 million; £93 million total

3. Flight
Weekend Estimate: $15 million; $47 million total

4. Argo
Weekend Estimate: $6.5 million; $85 million total

5. Taken 2
Weekend Estimate: $4 million; $131 million total

Anghus Houvouras

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