MOVIE MAN

How things went and how things are gonna go

By Movie Man | Published Wednesday, September 2, 2015

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A few times a year, the movie slate is really bad.

This is one of those weeks, so that’s when the Movie Man takes the time to review his summer film predictions and map out the rest of the year.

SUMMER GUESSES

There’s always a hit that comes out of left field and there’s a surefire thing that misses.

Here’s what the Movie Man guessed the top 10 movies of the summer of 2015 would be:

10. “Pixels” (MM #1150, 6)

9. “Ant-Man” (MM #1149, 7)

8. “Tomorrowland” (MM #1144, 5)

7. “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” (MM #1158, 8)

6. “Fantastic Four” (MM #1152, 3)

5. “Ted 2” (MM #1146, 1)

4. “Minions” (MM #1148, 6)

3. “Jurassic World” (MM #1144, 7)

2. “Inside Out” (MM #1145, 7)

1. “Avengers: Age of Ultron” (MM #1138, 7)

And here’s the actual top moneymakers over summertime (some of these are still making money, so the Movie Man computed the neighborhood they’ll finish in):

10. “San Andreas” (MM #1142, 5) $151 million

9. “Mad Max: Fury Road” (MM #1140, 6) $153 million

8. “Straight Outta Compton” (MM #1153, 7) $173 million, projected

7. “Pitch Perfect 2” $184 million

6. “Ant-Man” $185 million, projected

5. “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” $185-$190 million, projected

4. “Minions” $335 million, projected

3. “Inside Out” $350 million, projected

2. “Avengers: Age of Ultron” $458 million

1. “Jurassic World” $640 million

THE THOUGHT PROCESS

Back in late April, the Movie Man gave way too much credit to Seth McFarlane. The first “Ted” (2012, MM #989, 3) made ridiculous money – $219 million. Fortunately, the world woke up and avoided “Ted 2” (almost certainly Worst of Year); it paled in comparison to the original at $81 million.

Adam Sandler must be done. The Movie Man thought he might have some life left, but “Pixels” was never embraced and will end up out of the money with a take of about $70 million.

“Tomorrowland” looked promising, especially in 3-D, but it just never gained momentum and stalled at $93 million.

Then there’s “Fantastic Four.” The Movie Man bought into the interesting trailer. But the film – dissed by director Josh Trank the day before it was released – was very poor. It’s going to stop around $55 million and forever be known as the big movie that went very bad.

The Movie Man did not have Nos. 10-7 on his list at all.

“Straight Outta Compton” was a surprise and no one saw the crazy take of “Pitch Perfect 2” coming. What’s unique about those two? No animation, no superheroes, no dinosaurs and no mass spectacle.

The Movie Man got the top four right, just in the wrong order. “Jurassic World” was gargantuan; it sits No. 3 in the list of highest earners of all-time, with “Age of Ultron” No. 8.

ON THE HORIZON

The Movie Man will head for these movies for the remainder of the year (of course, sometimes film release dates get moved and other times the Movie Man changes his mind).

Sept. 4 – “The Transporter Refueled” – This has a pretty good trailer.

Sept. 11 – “The Visit” – A horror comedy could be fun.

Sept. 18 – This is a week with at least three good releases. The Movie Man will likely see “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials” over Johnny Depp’s much-lauded “Black Mass” gangster movie and “Everest.”

Sept. 25 – “Hotel Transylvania 2”

Oct. 2 – “The Martian”

Oct. 9 – The much moved-around (uh-oh) “Pan.”

Oct. 16 – Two potentially great movies come out this date. It’s hard to pass on the Tom Hanks/Steven Spielberg drama “Bridge of Spies.” But horrormeister Guillermo del Toro has made a film he’s always wanted to make, “Crimson Peak.” Tough call here.

Oct. 23 – Probably “The Last Witch Hunter,” even though the Movie Man has a wealth of knowledge about “Jem and the Holograms.”

Oct. 30 – “Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse,” another horror comedy.

Nov. 6 – “Spectre” – The next James Bond movie looks fantastic.

Nov. 13 – Yet another remake of “Friday the 13th” or a dip back to the computer-generated “Peanuts” (with a trailer that’s not exactly a knockout).

Nov. 20 – “Mockingjay – Part 2,” the final installment of “The Hunger Games.”

Nov. 27 – “The Good Dinosaur,” another Pixar release.

Dec. 4 – A Christmas-themed comedy-horror movie? That’s “Krampus.”

Dec. 11 – “In the Heart of the Sea” is an epic seafaring tale of a whale terrorizing a ship; it’s directed by the great Ron Howard.

Dec. 18 – “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” – Duh.

Dec. 25 – “Kung Fu Panda 3”

And if you’re wondering about Quentin Tarantino’s “Hateful Eight,” it got moved to Jan. 8.

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