Film Review - Barbie

This image released by Warner Bros. Pictures shows Ryan Gosling, left, and Margot Robbie in a scene from “Barbie.” Warner Bros. Pictures via Associated Press

NEW YORK — A week later, the “Barbenheimer” boom has not abated.

Seven days after Greta Gerwig’s “Barbie” and Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer” conspired to set box office records, the two films held unusually strongly in theaters. “Barbie” took in a massive $93 million in its second weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday.

“Barbie,” the pink-infused pop sensation, has seen remarkably sustained business following its year-best $162 million opening. Its ticket sales dipped only 43%.

“Barbie” has also outpaced Nolan’s “The Dark Knight” to notch the best first two weeks in theaters of any Warner Bros. release. It’s rapidly accumulated $351.4 million in U.S. and Canadian theaters, a rate that will soon make it the biggest box office hit of the summer. Every day it’s played, “Barbie” has made at least $20 million.

“Oppenheimer,” from Universal Pictures, again landed in second place with an estimated $46.2 million. It, too, held especially strong in its second weekend, with sales decreasing just 44%. Nolan’s three-hour drama starring Cillian Murphy as atomic bomb physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer has accrued $174.1 million thus far.

Film Review - Oppenheimer

This image released by Universal Pictures shows Cillian Murphy in a scene from “Oppenheimer.” Universal Pictures via Associated Press

With an additional $72.4 million in international cinemas, “Oppenheimer” has already surpassed $400 million globally.


The week’s top new release, Walt Disney Co.’s “Haunted Mansion,” an adaptation of the Disney theme park attraction, was easily overshadowed by the “Barbenheimer” blitz. The film, which cost about $150 million, debuted with $24 million domestically and $9 million in overseas sales. “Haunted Mansion,” directed by Justin Simien (“Dear White People,” “Bad Hair”) and starring an ensemble of LaKeith Stanfield, Tiffany Haddish, Owen Wilson, Danny DeVito, and Rosario Dawson, struggled to overcome mediocre reviews.

“Talk to Me,” the A24 supernatural horror film, fared better. It debuted with $10 million. The film, directed by Australian filmmakers Danny and Michael Philippou and starring Sophie Wilde, was a midnight premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in January and received terrific reviews from critics (95% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes). It was made for a modest $4.5 million.

While theaters being flush with moviegoers has been a huge boon to a film industry still recovering ground it lost during the pandemic, it’s been tougher sledding for Tom Cruise, the so-called savior of the movies last summer with “Top Gun: Maverick.” “Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part I,” starring Cruise and directed by Christopher McQuarrie, grossed $10.7 million in its third weekend. Its domestic total stands at $139.2 million.

Instead, the sleeper hit “Sound of Freedom” has been the best-performing non-“Barbenheimer” release in theaters. The Angel Studios’ release, which is counting crowdfunding pay-it-forward sales in its box office totals, made $12.4 million in its fourth weekend, bringing its haul thus far to nearly $150 million.

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