‘September Slump’ Continues: ‘End of Watch’ Leads Mediocre Box Office This Weekend

Four new films debuted this weekend, and none of them could pull the Hollywood box office out of its September slump. Despite anticipation and early critical favor, films like cop drama End of Watch and family/baseball flick Trouble with the Curve either under-performed or barely met expectations.

The soft weekend wrapped with no clear winner at the box office, reports The Hollywood Reporter. End of Watch and the horror film House at the End of the Street tied for first with $13 million each. Watch, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena, had the better showing of the two, playing on fewer screens. Though it failed to meet projections, the film may yet prove successful, as 85% of critics and 92% of fans enjoyed it, according to Rotten Tomatoes.

House may not be so lucky. Only 14% of critics and 59% of fans approved of the Jennifer Lawrence-helmed horror, reports USA Today.

Clint Eastwood’s baseball drama Trouble with the Curve rounded out the new releases, but performed dismally, despite a projected $16 million box office lead. Instead, it pulled in $12.7 million and got an overall mixed 53% critic and 66% of fan approval.

Some analysts have speculated that Eastwood’s RNC speech may have affected ticket sales for his first acting role since Gran Torino in 2008. “Insert your own ’empty chairs’ joke here,” said one analyst, while another surmised that actors risk box office loss when they become politically vocal. “George Clooney and Sean Penn probably lose some moviegoers because of their political position,” he said. “It’s just a chance you take.”

Finding Nemo 3D came in fourth with $9.5 million, followed by the horror film Resident Evil: Retribution with $6.7 million. Dredd 3D, though expected to take in at least $12 million, came in dead last with $6.3 million.

Did you go to the movies this weekend?