Those loveable banana obsessed Minions claimed the top spot at the US box office over the weekend. The Despicable Me spin-off took an estimated $115.2 million and has become the second-highest opening weekend for an animated movie. Shrek The Third still holds that title with its $121.6 million debut back in 2007.
The Minions were always going to coming it at number one as there was no direct competition, but few analysts would have predicted a spin-off would do so well. Traditionally, spin-offs don’t perform as well as the franchise that spawned them, Puss In Boots and the Penguins of Madagascar failed to rival the official sequels. Despicable Me 2 opened in 2013 to an impressive $90 million, the sequel would go on to accumulate a global haul of $970 million and The Minions could very well surpass that.
Jurassic World held onto second place and added another $18 million for a global total just short of $1.5 billion. Found footage horror The Gallows opened to mixed reviews and a solid $10 million, Ryan Reynolds sci-fi thriller Self/Less came in at number eight with a dismal $5.5 million.
After a wave of negative reviews and a soft domestic launch, Terminator: Genisys continues to save face thanks to its international success. The reboot/sequel has only amassed $68 million in the US and won’t come close to the takings of Terminator Salvation. However, the rest of the world has been more forgiving, and Genisys has made more that $156 million for a worldwide total of $224.8 and counting. To secure those two planned Terminator sequels, Genisys will need to take at least $400 million and shift some major units on home entertainment formats.
At the risk of sounding controversial, Terminator Genisys is nowhere near as bad as some critics are making out even if it is a glossy mess. I’m not saying it’s a great movie, at times the plot doesn’t even try to make sense, but it takes the franchise somewhere new and runs with its crazy ideas. Is it better than Rise of the Machines and Salvation? Absolutely. Is it better than any live-action Transformers movie ever made? 100%. Given that no new Terminator movie will ever rival Judgement Day, surely Genisys should be afforded a little slack even if it is relentlessly dumb?