Box office: ‘Bad Boys for Life’ reigns again, ‘Gretel & Hansel,’ ‘Rhythm Section’ falter

Blake Lively stars in the movie “The Rhythm Section.”
Blake Lively stars in Paramount Pictures’ “The Rhythm Section.”
(Bernard Walsh/Paramount Pictures)

The Super Bowl weekend box office is known as a dead zone for new releases and this weekend’s newcomers “Gretel & Hansel” and “The Rhythm Section” — which underwhelmed both critically and commercially — were no exceptions.

The domestic Super Bowl weekend box office has remained under $100 million for the last four years, with last year’s haul totaling a meager $75 million.

This weekend, Sony’s “Bad Boys for Life” continued its winning streak into a third consecutive weekend, maintaining the top spot and adding $17.7 million for a cumulative $148 million, according to estimates from measurement firm Comscore. The film’s strong showing boosted the total weekend gross to $83.1 million, keeping the year-to-date 10.8% ahead of 2019.

In second place, Universal’s “1917" added $9.7 million in its sixth weekend for a cumulative $119.2 million. The film is up for 10 Academy Awards at the Feb. 9 ceremony and recently won the top prizes from the Directors Guild and Producers Guild.


At No. 3, the studio’s “Dolittle” added $7.7 million in its third weekend for a cumulative $55.2 million.

In fourth place, United Artists Releasing and Orion’s “Gretel & Hansel” opened with $6.1 million, well below analyst projections of $10 million.

The $5-million horror fantasy stars Sophia Lillis (“It”) as Gretel in a dark update to the classic fairy tale. It was poorly received with a C- CinemaScore and a 56% “rotten” score on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes.

Rounding out the top five, STX Entertainment’s “The Gentlemen” added $6 million in its second weekend (a 44% drop) for a cumulative $20.4 million.


At No. 6, Sony’s “Jumanji: The Next Level” added $6 million in its eighth weekend for a cumulative $291.2 million.

In seventh place, Disney’s “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” added $3.2 million in its seventh weekend for a cumulative $507 million.

At No. 8, Universal’s “The Turning” added $3.1 million in its second weekend (a 56% drop) for a cumulative $11.7 million.

In ninth place, Sony’s “Little Women” added $3 million in its sixth weekend for a cumulative $98.8 million.

Barely cracking the top 10, Paramount’s “The Rhythm Section” opened with a disappointing $2.8 million, below analyst projections of $4 million to $8 million.

The Blake Lively spy thriller is about a sex worker turned assassin investigating a plane crash that killed her family. The $50-million film received a C+ CinemaScore and a 33% “rotten” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and set a record for the lowest gross among films opening in more than 3,000 theaters.

In limited release, Bleecker Street opened “The Assistant” in four locations to $84,702 for a per-screen average of $21,176.

The film stars Julia Garner of Netflix’s “Ozark” as an assistant to a powerful entertainment executive and tackles themes of sexual assault and predatory behavior. It was positively reviewed with an 84% “fresh” score on Rotten Tomatoes.


Netflix granted “Taylor Swift: Miss Americana” a limited theatrical release but does not disclose box office grosses. The film earned a 90% “fresh” score on Rotten Tomatoes.

ShortsTV and Magnolia Pictures’ three programs of 2020 Oscar-nominated Short Films opened on 460 screens to $1.1 million for a per-screen average of $2,413.

This week, Warner Bros. opens “Birds of Prey: (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn),” starring Margot Robbie.

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