Your weekend time is valuable and at the end of a long week, the discretionary time must be spent to its maximum value. To help narrow down your choices on the film, television, and gaming fronts, every Friday, the Weekend Preview gives you the rundown of your options and an educated guess as to which ones make the most sense.
At the Movies
Underworld: Blood Wars
Director: Anna Foerster
Stars: Kate Beckinsale, Theo James, Charles Dance
Current RT Meter: 10% Rotten
Drew’s box office prediction: $19,000,000
Nicks box office prediction: $15,000,000
Generally, the beginning of the year is when studios unload a lot of crappy movies that would have gotten crushed during the busy holiday season. This year is no different as we see the latest Underworld creep into theaters. The reviews on the newest vampire beat-’em-up aren’t too hot. No one is expecting an Oscar winner, of course, but 10% on Rotten Tomatoes? Ouch. However, this film series obviously has a fan base because it keeps churning out new sequels every few years. There are not many films out to scratch the action movie itch right now so Underworld: Blood Wars might actually surprise people when the weekend totals come in.
The Verdict: It’s being torn apart by critics but will still find some people looking for bloody vampire violence. You should cough up the change if you’re a fan of the others.
Director: Theodore Melfi
Stars: Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe
Current RT Meter: 92% Fresh
Drew’s box office prediction: $10,000,000
Nicks box office prediction: $12,000,000
Hidden Figures tells the true story behind of the untold heroines who put John Glenn into space. With a PG rating, great reviews and an inspiring plot, Hidden Figures might be the type of movie that hangs around for awhile and does well due to word-of-mouth. How will it do in its opening weekend, competing against Rogue One, Underworld and others? That’s a tricky question. But the marketing push has been strong here. Don’t be surprised if this is a movie you see on the charts for awhile.
The Verdict: Families looking for a feel-good true story might give Hidden Figures legs at the box office. If you’re spending time with the family this weekend you should suggest checking this one out.
A Monster Calls
Director: J.A. Bayona
Stars: Felicity Jones, Toby Kebbell, Liam Neeson
Current RT Meter: 88% Fresh
Drew’s box office prediction: $12,000,000
Nicks box office prediction: $6,000,000
I’m on A Monster Calls. On one hand, the film looks gorgeous and is based on a critically acclaimed monster. On the other hand, I cried during the trailer so I don’t know if I’m prepared. The awards season is in full swing and people have plenty of options for well-received dramas so A Monster Calls might get lost in the fray. It was never going to be a box office behemoth. But for those who have seen La La Land, Manchester by the Sea and others, A Monster Calls is right up their alley.
The Verdict: It’s not going to set the box office on fire but A Monster Calls will certainly connect with people looking for awards-worthy drama. Bring some Kleenex but you should see it if you can.
On the Tube
Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds (HBO. Saturday, 9PM)
Gosh, this is going to be hard to watch for many. Released just a week after we lost both Carrie Fisher and her mother Debbie Reynolds, this documentary gives a revealing look at the fun, loving and unorthodox pair. The movie was filmed in 2015 as Fisher worked on Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Reynolds mounted a one-woman show. The documentary looks fun and sweet but it’ll obviously be seen in a brand new light after the deaths of its stars. This will be required viewing for fans ready to watch.
The Verdict: Bright Lights promises to be funny, realistic and sadly bittersweet. It’s highly recommended.
74th Golden Globe Awards (NBC. Sunday, 8PM EST)
Awards season is in full swing which means the first major show is here: The Golden Globes! You can expect plenty of stars this year including those from La La Land, Midnight, Manchester by the Sea, Game of Thrones and much more. We aren’t sure what to expect when it comes to the comedy. Lovable Jimmy Fallon is hosting this year which is quite the change from recent hosts Ricky Gervais and Tiny Fey and Amy Poehler. Those hosts made a point to be biting, crass and mean. That’s not Fallon’s style so you can expect a lot more giggles and playful banter and fewer groans and cringes from the audience.
The Verdict: This is obviously a must-see for any major movie or TV fan. So watch, poke fun and live-tweet. We’re all going to be doing it.