Sunday, August 14, 2011

"Apes" rule box office for 2nd straight week (other than that, no spoilers)

"Apes' gets an extra opposable thumbs-up for actual drama.
These monkeys mean business - big  business.

For the second consecutive week, "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" has taken the No. 1 spot in box office sales for the U.S. and Canada. The prequel made an estimated $27.5 million, bringing its 10-day total to $104 million, according to studio estimates.

Finishing second was "Help," but we don't really care since it has nothing to do with sci fi.

Films with even the slightest sci fi connection also in the top 10 and their weekly take included: "Cowboys & Aliens," $7.6 million; 7. "Captain America: The First Avenger," $7.1 million; and "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2," $6.9 million.

Please note: I have purposely omitted "The Smurfs."

The numbers bode well for an "Apes" sequel. If you've seen the movie - I just returned from the theater about a half-hour ago - it's obvious that another movie is being set up. Yes, there's even a short extra scene after the credits start to roll.

And that's good news for moviegoers because the film, while not perfectly in line with the canon of the original "Planet of the Apes" series (sorry, serious fanboys), is far superior to the Tim Burton 2001 remake. It manages to blend actual drama, both human and simian, with state-of-the-apes CGI technology.

For fans of the original, be sure to look for a few inside references to the earlier movie.

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