Most box office pundits, including myself, are eating the proverbial crow from last weekend as the animated adventure Home smashed all expectations by grossing $54 million, eclipsing predictions by around $20 million. What did exactly as expected was the Will Farrell and Kevin Hart comedy Get Hard, which ended up with around $35 million.
These two will not have a chance against Furious 7 this weekend as the final instalment of the Fast and the Furious franchise opens to an expected $100 million. Interest is very high in this one partly due to the death of Paul Walker in November of 2013 before the movie was completed. Production was delayed while the script was rewritten and Walker’s brothers, Caleb and Cody, were brought in as stand-ins to complete his remaining scenes.
Over the seven movies there were changes to the cast, but most of the series regulars are back for Furious 7 including Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Lucas Black and Dwayne Johnson as well as adding Jason Statham, Kurt Russell, Djimon Hounsou, Thai action star Tony Jaa and MMA star Ronda Rousey.
In their last outing, Dominic Toretto (Diesel), Brian O’Conner (Walker) and the rest of the crew defeated Owen Shaw resulting in the former fugitives being able to return to the United States. However, their return to normalcy is interrupted when Shaw’s older brother Deckard (Statham) is seeking revenge for his brother’s death. When one of their own is killed, the crew goes back into action to save each other as well as stop a terrorist from getting his hands on a deadly weapon.
With its cast of action stars, expect even more of the action the franchise has delivered in the past, but surprisingly, critics are heaping praise on Furious 7 saying that the movie provides more than just action; it also provides emotional depth.
If you are looking for a different experience in a movie theatre and you are an art lover, check out Vermeer and Music: Art of Love and Leisure at the Paramount Theatre. Vermeer is now showing on Sunday, April 12, not this weekend as previously reported. Show time is 10 a.m. The National Gallery in London takes a fresh look at Johnnes Vermeer, the startling and fascinating painter most famous for The Girl with a Pearl Earring (which inspired the 2003 film starring Colin Firth and Scarlett Johansson). The National Gallery chose to focus on Vermeer’s relationship with music and tells the entire story of his life showing many of the artist’s work in high definition detail.