BOX OFFICE: Will “Onward” open at $40 or $50? “Way Back” might hit $10

It is Pixar’s weakest release, in terms of laughs, story, characters and heart, in years.

As its director also helmed “Monsters University,” “Onward” comes to the gate in the same condition. Winded.

A lot of reviewers were lukewarm on it, echoing the same sentiments I related from my review. Judging by Rottentomatoes, however, they didn’t have rhe guys to pan it. Metacritic is more sanguine on this misfire.

But the reviews won’t keep parents from bringing the tykes. Coronavirus fears, on the other hand…

“Onward” is projected to do $100 million worldwide on opening, at least $40 in North America. $50 is within reach, insists.

The other wide opening this weekend is a Ben Affleck drunk basketball coach gets sober melodrama. As Affleck himself went through rehab just before making it, that’s become the story for this redemption AFTER the closing credits downer.

Good on Affleck for cleaning up, but that story has made people cut a lot of slack in reviewing a mediocre movie. A sidebar story I saw yesterday even had his ex Jennifer Garner “begging” director Gavin O’Connor to hold the film while Ben sobered up.

O’Connor and Affleck had great success with the midding hit man thriller “The Accountant.” So “The Way Back” was never going to get made without Affleck in it. The BS the studios put out to sell a movie never ceases to amaze.

It should do on the low end of its $7-10 million expected take.

“Emma.” goes into wider release and may clear $5 million.

Will “Invisible Man” conjure up another $15-20? Will “Sonic” make a hasty exit? We will know Sat Am.

About Roger Moore

Movie Critic, formerly with McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Orlando Sentinel, published in Spin Magazine, The World and now published here, Orlando Magazine, Autoweek Magazine
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