The MOVIE THEATER — It’s the end of the year so that means most people tend to look back and reflect. We movie nerds here at KSL.com love to look back at the previous year's movies and think way too much about them.
We thought it would be fun to look back and see where we as a nation decided to put our collective movie entertainment dollars this year. Accounting for over $2 billion just in the U.S. alone, 2017 was a very profitable year for movies, especially so for Disney.
Here's a look at the top five highest-grossing films in the U.S. during 2017, according to data from Box Office Mojo. (Figures are based on data as of Thursday.)
5. “Spider-Man: Homecoming” $334,201,140
It’s not really a surprise “Spider-Man: Homecoming” sits in fifth place this year. The film was actually really good, and Spider-Man, in general, has a very strong superhero fan following. Scoring a 92 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and a third of a billion dollars is proof that there is still a lot of life in Spider-Man yet.
4. “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” $389,813,101
You are going to notice two common themes in this year's list: superheroes and Disney. “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” falls solidly into both categories.
Back in 2014, I think I may have stood up and proclaimed out loud to the movie theater audience after the first “Guardians of the Galaxy” that "I could not wait for Guardians 2 to come out." It only took three years for that to become reality, but I was back in the front row for Vol. 2 before opening day.
I have to admit I didn’t like the second one as much as the first one, but I may have been in the minority with that opinion because “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is sitting at No. 4 on the list and doesn't care what I think.
3. “Wonder Woman” $412,563,408
Continuing the superhero theme — it is no surprise that “Wonder Woman” made the list, despite DC’s run of bad luck of not being able to put out a successful superhero movie. It is safe to say that Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman was the most interesting part of the “Batman v Superman” disappointment from 2016. And this year, DC was smart to capitalize on the momentum the appearance of Wonder Woman generated in the film.
Between the stand-alone “Wonder Woman” movie and her role in the “Justice League,” I believe Wonder Woman has created one of the most interesting superhero narratives of the year.
2. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” $423,361,767
I guess the only surprise here is that “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is not No. 1 on the list. I guess if we waited a few more days to run this article, it could have taken that spot. What is a bit mind-blowing is that this installment of Star Wars is at No. 2, despite being released less than two weeks ago. The amount of cash the Star Wars name is able to generate is inconceivable to my tiny brain, but I guess when the brand has been a cultural phenomenon for four decades, it all makes sense.
1. “Beauty and the Beast” (2017) $504,014,165
Rounding out Disney’s world domination is this year's live-action version of “Beauty and the Beast” starring Emma Watson. I’ll have to admit I did not see this coming, mostly because it is always a superhero or Star Wars movie that tends to take the top spot.
As I put a little thought into it, it made more sense, given the fact this is a movie with a sentimental history and universal appeal. Disney has been smart to make live-action versions of their cartoon fairy tales. I think just as Star Wars will be an annual staple in films, we can expect to see the live-action remakes of some of Disney’s most popular animated films come to us at a regular pace.
Considering that 2017 won’t go down in history as the year for the best movies ever made, it has certainly done well for itself financially. I guess it’s proof that if you give the people what they want, they will pay for it.