Two very different buddy comedies vied for the No. 1 spot at the box office over the weekend.
Ice Cube and
Disney's seemingly unstoppable animated family film "Frozen" staged a sneak attack by adding sing-along shows in more than 1,000 theaters, and snagged the No. 2 spot with $9.3 million.
Focus Features' "That Awkward Moment," came in at No. 3 with $9 million after generating early predictions that it would likely steal the No. 1 spot from Universal's "Ride Along," now entering it's third consecutive week of domination.
"Frozen" has performed exceedingly well since it's Thanksgiving weekend wide release. Domestically it has earned a mammoth $360 million and is currently the highest-grossing original (non-sequel) animated feature of all time.
According to those who have seen pre-release audience surveys, "That Awkward Moment" was predicted to take in from $10 million to $12 million. Although it underperformed, it's final tally could be seen as a notable achievement for the small film since Focus Features CEO Peter Schlessel spent only $1.5 million to acquire the rights for the movie, which was written and directed by first-timer Tom Gormican.
The film cost only $8 million to make compared with "Ride Along"s (still-modest) $25-million budget, although "Ride Along" had a stellar start, earning $41.5 million during it's opening on
"That Awkward Moment" is about a trio of young men who discover that hooking up could mean falling in love. It was expected to received a significant boost against "Ride Along" since it was marketed to females between the ages of 17 and 34. A smart call on Super Bowl weekend when more men than women will likely be glued to the small screen as the
Exit polls show that the audience was indeed 64% female, with 61% under the age of 25.
Small victories aside, neither film has fared well in the critical reception category. Universal's "Ride Along" scored a wince-inducing 17% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with "That Awkward Moment" a still-sorry 22%.
There's a pretty strong disconnect between critics and audiences on this matter, however, with "Ride Along" earning a grade of A from CinemaScore, a company that polls moviegoers on opening night. "That Awkward" moment received a B.
The weekend's only other wide release was Paramount's
That film, which is adapted from a 2009 novel by Joyce Maynard and cost $18 million to make, earned a disappointing $5.3 million. The film has suffered from mixed reviews, with a 32% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a B-minus CinemaScore.
Reitman isn't used to taking critical beatings, having made well-received favorites including
Also, making appearances in the weekend top 10 were Open Road's animated comedy "The Nut Job," which took fourth place with $7.6 million; Universal's tale of the war in Afghanistan, "Lone Survivor," which stars
In the Oscar-contender category, the highly praised
Martin Scorcese's racy