Tag Archives: Kapoor & Sons

Bollywood Box Office: January 20-22, 2017

Dangal turned in another stellar performance at the North American box office over the weekend. From January 20-22, 2017, it earned $193,045 from 62 theaters ($3,114 average), bringing its total earnings to $12,126,860.

Dangal looks nothing like a typical Bollywood movie in its fifth weekend in theaters in North America. Heck, the median opening weekend gross for Bollywood movies released here last year was less than $165,000! In 2016, twenty of the fifty Hindi films released here stuck around theaters for at least five weeks. The median number of theaters for a movie in its fifth weekend was six, the median gross earnings were $4,963, and the median per-theater average was $796. Dangal isn’t just crushing those median numbers, it’s leaps and bounds ahead of the movie with the second best fifth-weekend performance of 2016: Kapoor & Sons, which earned $28,377 from 36 theaters.

On the flip side, OK Jaanu just can’t find an audience here. In its second weekend, it earned $32,773 from 49 theaters ($669 average), bringing its total to $345,725. Raees and Kaabil will knock OK Jaanu out of most of those theaters come Wednesday. Too bad, ’cause it’s an okay film.

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Best Bollywood Movies of 2016

2016 was a darned good year for Hindi films, with positive reviews outnumbering negative reviews 26-22 at this site. Here’s my list of the Best Bollywood Movies of 2016. (Click on the title of each movie to read my original review.)

I should start by noting that Dhanak — which released theatrically in the United States and India in June, 2016 — would have made the list had it not already appeared on my Best of 2015 list. I watched it as part of the 2015 Chicago South Asian Film Festival.

As for the ten films that did make the 2016 list, two stood out for employing narrative structures that reflect their subject matter. Pink begins with the aftermath of a sexual assault, and not until the ending credits do we see the events as they really happened, echoing the “he said, she said” nature of many sexual assault cases. Waiting isn’t afraid to show its characters being bored, a feeling anyone who’s spent time in a hospital can relate to.

Neerja and Aligarh were emotional true stories featuring riveting performances by their lead actors: Sonam Kapoor and Manoj Bajpayee, respectively. Parched also earned a nod for the stellar performances by its four female co-leads.

Two films mastered genres with spotty track records in Bollywood: superhero movies and sex comedies. A Flying Jatt was a welcome nod to the colorful, optimistic type of superhero flick that has fallen out of favor in Hollywood in recent years, featuring an ordinary protagonist who discovers his inner hero (with a little divine assistance, providing a compelling subplot about religious identity). Unlike the two worst Bollywood movies of 2016 — the mean-spirited sex comedies Mastizaade and Kyaa Kool Hain Hum 3Brahman Naman is raunchy and hilarious, aiming most of its jokes at its hapless leading man.

South Korean films have inspired a number of Hindi thrillers in recent years (Rocky Handsome and Jazbaa, for instance), but the chilling Raman Raghav 2.0 is totally Indian, especially in regard to the way director Anurag Kashyap uses music to guide the audience through emotional moments.

The two films at the top of this year’s list earn their spots by tackling tough subjects in otherwise very commercial fare. Udta Punjab harnessed the star-power of Kareena Kapoor Khan, Alia Bhatt, Shahid Kapoor, and Diljit Dosanjh to deftly address Punjab’s drug crisis and make it relevant to people not directly affected by it.

My favorite film of the year also featured a top-notch cast, including Alia Bhatt (again), Rishi Kapoor, Sidharth Malhotra, Fawad Khan, Rajat Kapoor, and Ratna Pathak. Kapoor & Sons bravely examines the secrets that family members keep from one another and the resentment that builds because of it, addressing issues like infidelity, parental favoritism, and homosexuality with sensitivity and compassion. That Kapoor & Sons also manages to be lots of fun just further cements it as my Best Bollywood Movie of 2016.

Check my Netflix list to see which of these films are available for streaming in the United States.

Kathy’s Best Bollywood Movies of 2016

  1. Kapoor & Sons — Buy/rent at Amazon or iTunes
  2. Udta Punjab — Buy at Amazon
  3. Aligarh — Buy at Amazon
  4. Parched — Buy/rent at Amazon or iTunes
  5. Brahman Naman
  6. Raman Raghav 2.0 — Buy at Amazon
  7. A Flying Jatt
  8. Neerja — Buy at Amazon
  9. Waiting — Buy at Amazon
  10. Pink — Buy at Amazon

Previous Best Movies Lists

Streaming Video News: November 4, 2016

I update my list of Bollywood movies free on Amazon Prime with major changes to its streaming catalog. Amazon eliminated 54 of the 71 Indian movies previously available, dashing my dreams for an Akshay Kumar Khiladi marathon. Five of the titles remaining are either documentaries or films in other Indian languages, which means there are exactly twelve Bollywood movies currently available. Check out my Amazon Prime page for the list of what’s left.

In happier streaming video news, Kapoor & Sonsmy favorite Bollywood movie of the year so far — was just added to Eros Now. Yay!

Bollywood Box Office: May 20-22

Last week, I wrote of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan: “Even her lowest earning movies are average performers compared to the rest of the field.” That proved true once again with Sarbjit, which earned $130,199 from 83 theaters ($1,569 average) in North America during the weekend of May 20-22, 2016. It had the tenth best opening weekend of 2016 out of a field of 21 films.

While that opening weekend performance seems okay, by a number of metrics, it’s not. Sarbjit debuted a week after another biopic — the Emraan Hashmi-starrer Azhar — earned almost the exact same amount ($127,266) from 32 fewer theaters, with a per-screen average of $2,495. Sarbjit‘s 83 theaters represent the lowest number of opening weekend screens for one of Rai Bachchan’s movies since 2008’s Sarkar Raj opened in 70 North American theaters. More significantly, Sarbjit‘s opening weekend total is Rai Bachchan’s lowest since 2003’s Kuch Naa Kaho, and that film only released in 32 theaters.

There could be multiple contributing factors at play, such as audience fatigue from consecutive biopics, or the fact that Rai Bachchan became the face of promotions for a movie in which she doesn’t even play the title character, but there’s something more going on here. Rai Bachchan’s presence in a movie no longer guarantees a $1 million haul, the way it did during her heyday. Surely she’ll have better luck with her next project: director Karan Johar’s multi-starrer Ae Dil Hai Mushkil.

In its second weekend, Azhar‘s business fell 85% from its opening weekend. Azhar earned $19,130 from 35 theaters ($547 average), bringing its total to $185,695.

Other Hindi movies still in North American theaters:

  • Baaghi: Week 4; $3,329 from six theaters; $555 average; $435,687 total
  • Kapoor & Sons: Week 10; $748 from one theater; $2,661,188 total
  • Fan: Week 6; $630 from two theaters; $315 average; $2,302,581 total
  • 1920 London: Week 3; $40 from one theater; $24,834 total

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: May 13-15

The biopic Azhar opened very well in North America, especially given the modest expectations governing its release here. During the weekend of May 13-15, 2016, Azhar earned $127,266 from 51 theaters ($2,495 average). While those may not seem like blockbuster numbers, consider this: 13 Hindi movies have released in more theaters than Azhar this year, but Azhar‘s opening weekend total ranks tenth for 2016, and its opening weekend average ranks seventh. No other Hindi movie to open in fewer than 80 theaters has averaged more than $2,000 per screen in its opening weekend. Of the ten other films released into fewer than 80 theaters this year, the second best opening weekend average is just $1,157 (Rocky Handsome, which opened in 74 theaters). Distributors were cautious given that Emraan Hashmi isn’t a huge draw here, but Azhar turned out to be a modest hit.

Other Hindi movies still showing in the United States and Canada:

  • Baaghi: Week 3; $19,342 from 27 theaters; $716 average; $423,418 total
  • Fan: Week 5; $5,018 from six theaters; $836 average; $2,301,200 total
  • 1920 London: Week 2; $984 from five theaters; $197 average; $24,084 total
  • Kapoor & Sons: Week 9; $727 from one theater; $2,660,140

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: May 6-8

1920 London‘s North American debut was predictably bad. From May 6-8, 2016, it earned $16,204 from 38 theaters ($426 average). Bollywood fans in the United States and Canada don’t have much appetite for horror films, particularly not when the biggest star in the cast is Sharman Joshi. However, just because fans here won’t go to the theater for horror films doesn’t mean they won’t watch them at all. I’d love to see some company revisit the idea of same-day rentals for movies that don’t merit a theatrical release in North America, especially for genre fare like this.

Baaghi‘s business fell by nearly 75% in its second weekend. It took in another $61,921 from 53 theaters ($1,168 average), bringing its total to $376,769.

In its fourth weekend, Fan earned $17,849 from 23 theaters ($776 average). Its total stands at $2,290,573. Fan should get a fifth weekend in a handful of theaters before its North American run comes to a close.

Kapoor & Sons hung around for an eighth weekend in one theater, earning $853 and bringing its total to $2,658,435.

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: April 29-May 1

The Tiger Shroff-Shraddha Kapoor action flick Baaghi hit all its marks in its first weekend in North America. From April 29-May 1, 2016, it earned $233,793 from 96 theaters ($2,435 average). It opened in the seventh highest number of theaters this year, posting the seventh best opening weekend average and eighth best opening weekend total. Not bad at all. Further, Baaghi‘s performance was leaps and bounds better than Shroff’s 2014 debut, Heropanti, which earned just $31,556 from 20 theaters ($1,578 average) in its opening weekend here.

Last weekend’s new release, Laal Rang, has the dubious distinction of being the first Hindi film of 2016 to exit theaters after just one week. A $5,874 opening weekend will do that to ya.

In its third weekend, Fan earned $91,376 from 87 theaters ($1,050 average), bringing its total to $2,246,220. That ends any chance of Fan wresting the top spot from Kapoor & Sons, which added another $5,560 from five theaters ($1,112 average) to bring its seven-week total to $2,656,169.

Ki and Ka took in $1,954 from five theaters ($391 average), bringing its total to $919,815.

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: April 22-24

If you’re curious as to why movies featuring Randeep Hooda as the headlining star don’t release internationally, look no further than Laal Rang. From April 22-24, 2016, it earned just $5,874 from 31 North American theaters, a per-screen average of $189. Yuck. That’s the second worst opening weekend of the year after Loveshhuda ($1,399 from eight theaters), and that movie starred a couple of no-names. Randeep is my favorite actor, but apparently I’m one of the few people on the continent who will buy a ticket to watch him as the solo lead in a film. I was not surprised to have the entire theater to myself Friday morning.

The weekend was notable for another disappointing box office performance. In its second weekend, Fan earned $353,949 from 249 North American theaters ($1,421 average). That’s a drop of 74% from its opening weekend. Compare that to how this year’s other high-earners fared in their second weekends: Kapoor & Sons (-40%); Airlift (-41%); Neerja (-27%). Perhaps Fan‘s most comparable film among wide releases is Fitoor, which saw its second weekend biz drop by 87%.

Yash Raj Films should be worried, because among Hindi films that failed to retain at least 30% of their opening weekend gross in their second weekends, none have been able to double their opening weekend gross over the course of their theatrical run. (For Fan, that double figure would be $2,677,506.) That raises the distinct possibility that Fan may not be able to unseat Kapoor & Sons from atop this year’s North American leaderboard.

Of course, Fan has plenty going for it, including Shah Rukh Khan’s star power, a huge theatrical presence, and a favorable Bollywood calendar that won’t see another wide release until Housefull 3 on June 3. On the downside, waning interest tends to have a snowball effect. Fitoor earned $2,171 in its third weekend. With per-screen average earnings currently on par with Hollywood movies that have been out for a few weeks, there isn’t much incentive for theaters to keep Fan around, especially those theaters that rarely carry Hindi films. Even regular Bollywood theaters will be under pressure to free up screen space when Captain America: Civil War opens on May 6. Fan needs a really good second week and solid third weekend if it has any chance of beating Kapoor & Sons.

Other Hindi movies still in North American theaters:

  • Kapoor & Sons: Week 6; $13,352 from 12 theaters; $1,113 average; $2,647,874 total
  • Ki and Ka: Week 4; $8,074 from 12 theaters; $673 average; $914,993 total

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Opening April 22: Laal Rang

One new Hindi movie opens in the Chicago area on April 22, 2016. Laal Rang (“The Color Red“) stars my boy Randeep Hooda as the operator of an illegal blood bank.

Laal Rang opens on Friday at the AMC River East 21 in Chicago and AMC South Barrington 30 in South Barrington. It has a listed runtime of 2 hrs. 30 min.

After posting the best opening weekend of 2016, Shah Rukh Khan’s Fan carries over for a second week at both of the above theaters, plus the Regal Gardens Stadium 1-6 in Skokie, MovieMax Cinemas in Niles, Muvico Rosemont 18 in Rosemont, Marcus Addison Cinema in Addison, Regal Cantera Stadium 17 in Warrenville, and AMC Loews Woodridge 18 in Woodridge.

The South Barrington 30 also holds over Ki and Ka and Kapoor & Sons.

Other Indian movies showing in the Chicago area this weekend:

Bollywood Box Office: April 15-17

Shah Rukh Khan’s Fan was the first movie of 2016 to earn more than $1 million in its opening weekend in the United States and Canada. From April 15-17, 2016, Fan earned $1,338,753 from 308 theaters ($4,347 average).

The caveat to the celebrations is that, of the 13 films starring Khan that have released in North America in the last decade, Fan‘s opening weekend only ranks tenth. Additionally, Fan‘s opening weekend average is the worst of all Khan’s movies going back to 1999. Granted, Fan opened in 18 more theaters than Khan’s previous widest release, Dilwale, but that increase isn’t enough to explain such a low average. Musicals are Khan’s bread and butter, whereas Fan doesn’t have a single dance number.

That said, any movie starring Shah Rukh Khan makes a ton of money for theaters here. Among films showing in more than 100 theaters in North America over the weekend, Fan‘s per-screen average would rank third, behind new releases The Jungle Book and Barbershop: The Next Cut.

Ki and Ka closed out its third weekend with $34,175 from 38 theaters ($899 average), bringing its total to $892,159.

In its fifth weekend, Kapoor & Sons earned another $28,377 from 36 theaters ($788 average). Its North American total stands at $2,624,277.

Sources: Box Office Mojo and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama