Welcome to the Movies Now box office time machine. With “The Martian” outmaneuvering a four-movie pileup to reach the summit of this weekend’s box office, we look at the No. 1 films from 10, 20 and 30 years ago. Click a film's title to read The Times review:
2005 -- The torture porn sequel “Saw II” tore through the competition to rack up $31.7 million ($38.6 in 2015 dollars), while another sequel, “The Legend of Zorro” ($16.3 million/$19.9 million) starring Antonio Banderas, and the comedy “Prime” ($6.2 million/$7.6 million), featuring Uma Thurman and Meryl Streep, had more modest debuts. The previous week’s number one movie, "Doom," fell into a death spiral that even Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson could not prevent, dropping 73% to land in seventh place. The dance documentary “Ballet Russes” posted the highest per-screen average ($12,230/$14,901).
1995 -- The Elmore Leonard gangster-in-Hollywood tale, "Get Shorty," and its star, John Travolta, once again charmed their way to the top with $10.2 million ($15.9 million in 2015 dollars), holding off a trio of newcomers. The contemporary fable “Powder” ($7.1 million/$11.1 million) overcame controversy surrounding director Victor Salva to finish second.
Neither “Vampire in Brooklyn” ($7 million/$10.9 million), featuring the unlikely pairing of director Wes Craven and star Eddie Murphy, or the Sigourney Weaver/Holly Hunter-starring serial killer thriller “Copycat” ($5.2 million/$8.1 million) could scare up much of an audience. The Woody Allen comedy “Mighty Aphrodite,” which would go on to score a best supporting actress Oscar for Mira Sorvino, pleased the gods of limited release with a per-screen of $17,183 ($26,828).
1985 -- In its fourth week of release, the sexy thriller "Jagged Edge" finally slashed its way to number one with a weekend tally of $3.1 million ($7.1 million in 2015 dollars). Starring Glenn Close and Jeff Bridges, the film was directed by Richard Marquand (“Return of the Jedi”) and helped launch ex-journalist Joe Eszterhas into the stratosphere of million-dollar screenwriters.
The hip-hop musical “Krush Groove,” starring Blair Underwood, and more notable for its soundtrack than anything else, was the top new release debuting in second place, grossing $2.9 million ($6.4 million). Arnold Schwarzenegger and "Commando’s" three-week run at the top ended, sliding to third place with $2.8 million ($6.2 million).