I’m delighted that Dolphin Tale topped the box office this week with a healthy $14.2 million, very impressive for its second week of release. It shows that the movie has strong word of mouth — people who have seen it are encouraging their friends to take their families. And with The Lion King holding on to third place, the message should be clear that ticket-buyers want family films. In between at second place is the excellent Moneyball. But it is unusual that none of this week’s releases made it into the top three. What’s Your Number deservedly tanked. I hope that 50/50 finds its audience. And it was very encouraging to see such a good response to the Christian film “Courageous.” Not only did it outperform the projected sales in limited release, but the audience reaction was very enthusiastic. According to the LA Times,
Audiences who saw the movie loved it, giving it an average grade of A+, according to market research firm CinemaScore. “Courageous” is only the fourth movie this year to earn a perfect grade, joining “The Help” and two other movies that resonated faith-based audiences, “Soul Surfer” and “Dolphin Tale.” It was an older crowd that went to see “Courageous” this weekend, with 77% of the audience over 25.
The movie got off to an even better start than “Fireproof,” the Kendricks’ 2008 film featuring “Growing Pains” star Kirk Cameron as a firefighter struggling to keep his marriage together. That movie, also inexpensive to produce, opened to $6.8 million and ultimately collected $33.5 million worldwide.
The movie was not screened for critics, but I hope to review it very soon.