Of the big titles that hit the big screen for the first time this past weekend, the faith-based film “Courageous” did almost as well as or better than any of them.
Bringing in an estimated weekend gross of $8.8 million, the film came in second only to mainstream rival “50/50” among new releases and fifth overall, according to boxofficemojo.com's estimates. But considering the limited released of “Courageous,” the faith-based film’s per-theater average ($7,580 ) was higher than “50/50” and all other films this past weekend.
“Courageous” tells the tale of four law enforcement officers who work hard to protect and serve the community, but struggle to do their best when it comes to being good fathers. After one of the men goes through a tragic family accident, however, they all decide to pursue what it means to be a godly man, husband and father.
Though many who have seen the film say they were moved to tears by it, it is clearly directed toward a male audience. It is complete with action sequences, including a car chase seen, which is used to draw men in to the story.
Since the film's release over the weekend, many of those who have watched it have taken to the film's official Facebook page to say how much they enjoyed it.
“The best movie I've seen in awhile,” wrote one woman, “Thank you to all who made these wonderful movies. They are a blessing to so many.”
“Just saw the movie tonight, amazing, simply amazing !!! I wept for all children without involved fathers, for my dad was uninvolved, but I broke the cycle! I know how important it is for children to have involved dads/moms and the true beauty and blessings it brings,” one man posted.
“50/50,” the winner among the new releases this weekend, took in only $58,000 more than “Courageous” though it opened in twice as many theaters. It tells the story of two best friends, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt (“Inception,” television's “3rd Rock From the Sun”) and Seth Rogen (“Pineapple Express,” “The Green Hornet”) whose lives are changed when Gordon-Levitt's character is diagnosed with cancer.
Following behind “50/50” and “Courageous” was the newly released horror-flick “Dream House” and relationship comedy “What's Your Number?” which earned an estimated $8.2 million and $5.6 million, respectively.
The inspirational film “Dolphin Tale,” featuring Morgan Freeman (“The Shawshank Redemption,” “The Dark Knight”), Ashley Judd (“Double Jeopardy,” “High Crimes”) and Harry Connick Jr. (“New in Town,” “Hope Floats”), took the top overall spot in the weekend's box office with an estimated gross of over $14 million in its second week in theaters.
The baseball flick “Moneyball,” which features Brad Pitt (“Ocean's Eleven,” “Mr. & Mrs. Smith”) and Jonah Hill (“Superbad,” “Forgetting Sarah Marshall”), raked in $12.5 million in its second week for a second place overall finish, followed by the rebirth of the Disney classic “The Lion King” in 3D which took in $11 million in its third week in theaters.