Weekly Thread – International BO last weekend – Nov 02-04 2012

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North America:
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Last weekend a wrecker called Ralph and an airline pilot lightened up the North American box office.  “Wreck-It-Ralph” was the big winner of the weekend with $49.04 million over the weekend, which is the best opening of a Disney animated film putting aside Pixar collaborations. Its reviews are also amazing with a 85% tomatometer score.

Second place went to the new movie “Flight” which earned a more impressive $24.90 million over the weekend and beat even the most high-end predictions. More impressive because it opened in only 1,884 theatres compared to the Wreck-It-Ralph’s opening in 3,752 theatres. “Argo” captured the 3rd position with $10.21 million and 4th place went to the new movie grindhouse kung-fu actioner “The Man with the Iron Fists” earning $7.91 million.

“Wreck-It-Ralph”

Release Date: 2 November 2012 (USA)

Genre: Animation | Comedy | Family

Director: Rich Moore

Stars: John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer and Jane Lynch.

Story:

Ralph (a video game villain) is tired of being overshadowed by Fix-It Felix, the “good guy” star of their game who always gets to save the day. But after decades doing the same thing and seeing all the glory go to Felix, Ralph decides he’s tired of playing the role of a bad guy. He takes matters into his own massive hands and sets off on a game-hopping journey across the arcade through every generation of video games to prove he’s got what it takes to be a hero. While doing so he brings trouble to his entire arcade after sneaking into a new first-person shooter game and unleashing a deadly enemy.

“Flight”


Release Date: 2 November 2012 (USA)

Genre: Drama | Mystery

Director:  Robert Zemeckis

Stars: Denzel Washington, Don Cheadle, John Goodman and Melissa Leo.

Story:

Denzel Washington stars as Whip Whitaker, a seasoned airline pilot, who miraculously crash lands his plane after a mid-air catastrophe, saving nearly every soul on board. After the crash, Whip is hailed as a hero, but as more is learned, more questions than answers arise as to who or what was really at fault and what really happened on that plane?

Flight marked acclaimed director Robert Zemeckis’s (Forrest Gump) return to the live-action movies after more than a decade (his last live-action movie was 2000′s Tom Hanks starrer “Cast Away”). The movie has got very strong reviews with a tomatometer score of 76% with most praises poured on Denzel Washington who is described to have given one of his most accomplished performances and this may earn him a best actor nomination at Academy Awards.

“The Man with the Iron Fists”

Release Date: 2 November 2012 (USA)

Genre: Action

Director:  RZA

Stars: Russel Crowe, Lucy Liu, RZA, Cung Le and Dave Bautista.

Story:

On the hunt for a fabled treasure of gold, a band of warriors, assassins, and a rogue British soldier descend upon a village in feudal China, where a humble blacksmith looks to defend himself and his fellow villagers.

The movie has a funny tagline – “You can’t spell KUNG FU without F and U” :P

South Korea:
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The first place at the Korean BO was occupied by a new Korean movie, the fantasy drama “A Warewolf Boy”, beating out the mighty British superspy James Bond’s latest movie “Skyfall”. “A Warewolf Boy” opened with $6.84 million on 707 screens over the weekend for a total opening of $8.49 million, whereas “Skyfall” earned $3.2 million over the weekend and a total of $11.62 million after the 2nd weekend.

Third place went to “Masquerade”, the highest grosser movie of Korea in 2012 till now, earning $1.84 million over the weekend and a cumulative total of $75.76 million after the 8th weekend of it’s release. 4th place holder “Suspect X” earned $0.75 million and a total of $9.73 after the 3rd weekend.

“A Warewolf Boy”

Release Date: 31 October 2012 (Korea)

Genre: Fantasy | Drama | Romance

Director: Jo Sung-hee

Stars: Song Joong-ki and Park Bo-yeong

Story:

A Korean Grand Mother in her sixties living in the US, receives a phone call about the sale of her old family home back in South Korea. Returning to her homeland, she’s met by granddaughter Eun-joo, and they drive to the house in the country. She recalls how 47 years ago when she was a teenage girl in 1965, she with her widowed mother and sister Sun-ja moved from Seoul to the country for health reasons. There she befriends and attempts to civilize a feral boy she discovers on the grounds – but the beast inside him is constantly waiting to burst out.

The film draws interest as it stars two of the most popular young stars today: Song Joong-ki and Park Bo-yeong. Song Joong-ki, a handsome actor, have gone through a total image makeover in the movie. He took off his pretty boy image and became a Werewolf Boy who eats with his bare two hands. While Song’s movie is conquering the box office, Park Si-hoo’s action thriller “Confession of Murder” is being released this week and will try to out a break on the former’s dominance.

“Suspect X”

Release Date: 18 October 2012 (Korea)

Genre: Drama | Thriller

Director: Bang Eun-jin

Stars: Ryu Seung-beom, Lee Yo-won and Jo Jin-woong.

“Suspect X” (previously known as “Perfect Number”) is adapted from Japanese mystery writer Keigo Higashino’s novel “The Devotion of Suspect X”, which centers around a genius mathematics professor who plans the perfect alibi to cover up an accidental murder committed by the woman he loves. There is also a Japanese movie of the same name, based on the same novel released in 2008.

Story:

Seems to be an ordinary math teacher in high school, Suk-go is indeed a brilliant mathematician. In his dull life, seeing Hwa-sun is the sole happiness for him. Hwa-sun is a shopkeeper where he buys lunch from and she actually lives next to Suk-go. The two become inseparable when Suk-go decides to cover up Hwa-sun’s accidental murder while she was mercilessly beaten by her ex-husband.

China:
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The top 3 positions at the Chinese box office this week are all occupied by holdovers. Hollywood movie “The Bourne Legacy” retained the top position for second week in a row with $11.51 million and a total of $25.55 million after two weeks. Chinese movie “Taichi II” rose from it’s 6th position last week to 2nd position earning $9 million and a total of $10.13 after two weeks. Hollywood movie “Total Recall” fell from 2nd position to 3rd earning $4.39 million and $16.22 million after two weeks.

Among the new movies, French supernatural-thriller “Derrière les murs” secured 4th position earning $2.18 million over the week and “Haunting Love” secured 6th position earning $1.44 million.

“Tai Chi Hero”

Release Date: 25 October 2012 (China, HK)

Genre: Action | Kung Fu

Director: Stephen Fung

Stars: Yuan Xiao Chao, Angelababy, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Eddie Peng, Feng Shao Feng and Yuen Biao.

Also known as Tachi II, the Stephen Fung directed movie is a sequel to his steampunk martial arts extravaganza “Tai Chi Zero”. According to critics the movie is comparably more exciting when it comes to the storyline, cast and action sequences than the former one.

Story:

Picking up from where the first Taichi O film left off, Yang Luchan (Yuan Xiaochao) is now a gongfu master married to Yuniang (Angelababy), the feisty daughter of the village head, Master Chen (Tony Leung Ka Fai). As village traitor Zijing (Eddie Peng) continues his pledge to demolish the place, Master Chen’s estranged son, Zaiyang (Feng Shaofeng), returns home from self-imposed exile.

“Haunting Love”

Release Date: 30 October 2012 (China, HK)

Genre: Horror | Thriller | Mystery

Director: Ting Leung

Starring:  Xin Zhilei, Cheng Yi, Yu Yi, Ye Xiqi and Zhang Zhehan.

“Haunting Love” (also known as Sly Love) is a rare Chinese mainland horror film telling not only a horror story, but also a love story, and a murder mystery. Why rare, the answer can be quoted from an article I read on the net:

“Over the years a few mainland directors have made horror films in China, but with low budgets and strict censorship, it’s
fair to say that making these films is a nightmare that doesn’t make money. You might call it a dying industry, suffering death by a thousand cuts.

The bottom line: The State Administration for Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) has very detailed guidelines about what’s not permitted in terms of the supernatural and violence. China has no rating system and films are approved one by one, scene by scene. For example, no “real” ghosts are permitted because they represent superstition – thus, the only allowable ghosts must be in dreams or the imagination. And they can’t be too graphic.” (SOURCE)

Story:

A female radio anchor attempts suicide seven days before her wedding when she witnessed her fiance’s betrayal and affair with ex-girlfriend. The fiance, a famous author himself dies mysteriously as do other people as the tale unravels.

Japan:
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Top movie at the Japanese box office this weekend was the new movie “The Floating Castle” or Nobô no shiro (original title), earning $5.06 million over the weeknd, beating out 4 other new releases and last weeks top movie. Second place went to another new movie “A Chorus of Angels”, earning $2.25 million and third place went to last weeks topper “Smile Precure! Everyone is all Mixed Up in the Picture Book”, earning $1.79 million over the weekend and $5.2 million in total. Another new Japanese movie “Fly with the Gold” secured 4th spot with $1.26 million, while new hollywood releases “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” and “Paranormal Activity” had to happy with 5th and 6th spot respectively with earnings $1.24 and $0.76 millions.

“The Floating Castle”

Release Date: November 2 (Japan)

Genre: Period | Action | Comedy

Director: Shinji Higuchi, Isshin Inudo

Starring: Mansai Nomura, Koichi Sato, Hiroki Narimiya and Masachika Ichimura.

Story:

In the year 1590, powerful daimyo Toyotomi Hideyoshi nears his plan to unify all of Japan, but he comes across a floating fortress known as Oshi Castle. Narita Nagachika, in charge of defending the castle, must use his army of 500 men to combat Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s army of 20,000.

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